We're happy to share with everyone the latest crag the Climb Philippines team has been working on. Monkey Wall, like the rest of the walls we're currently enjoying in Wawa, was first developed in the early to mid-90's. Its sustained section features beautiful gray and white streaks, which was what caught our eye during a hike to the peak. Upon closer inspection, we found that it had already been established. Ahhh....so THIS is the Monkey Wall!
For that (and so much more), we would like to give credit to the 'Talban bible and its creators, the first guidebook Rockclimbing in Montalban (published 2000), a collaborative effort of Roel Tan-Torres, Simon Sandoval, Ruben Flores, Iva Ybanez, Jong Narciso, and Carlos "Kuya Mackie" Makinano.
We've devoted a few weekends to scout the routes, add some anchors, and replace some iffy bolts. Still a work in a progress, with more space for further development. But in the meantime, willing climbers are welcome to try the lines out. Just always remember to CLIMB SAFE, and do be mindful of the reminders outlined below.
From Aling Norma’s eatery, follow the road going towards Wawa Dam. The road will split right after the giant swimming pool. Left path remains a rocky/muddy dirt road; take the curving cement road at the right that goes upward. This is also the jump-off point to Mt. Binacayan, one of the frequented peaks in Wawa.
It’s a good 30-45 minute hike from Aling Norma’s, depending on your cardio level. A decent “warm-up”, not so different from your favorite trek up to Uling.
A. 3 Monkeys and the Sun (Project)
12m / 9 bolts / Anchors: 1 locking biner and backup
Starts at the left part of the white slab, up to a compression boulder sequence.
B. Handlanger (Project)
15m / 11 bolts / Anchors: Hangers only
Potentially the hardest line as of yet, possibly with a dyno. Use long draw on the 5th.
C. I Got You Babe* (6c)
22m / 15 bolts / Anchors: Hangers only / 1996 FA Jong Narciso
Made for those with a good set of pinchers. Follow the flowstone unto a mini-rest before more tufa climbing. Original route ended at bolt #9, afterwards is the extended version. Must try.
D. The Gift* (7a)
13m / 8 bolts / Anchors: Hangers only / 1998 FA Kim Imao
A high first bolt at the ledge, then follow through on a single diagonal crack. Short and sweet!
E. Seven Nation Army (6a)
20m / 13 bolts / Anchors: Rings / 2018 FA Mio Gomez
Begin inside the big crack into a small overhang, and up the white stripe. Nice variety of movements, highly recommended. Use long draws on the 3rd and 7th bolts to avoid drag.
F. Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door* (5b)
18m / 10 bolts / Anchors: Hangers only / 1996 FA Choy Aquino, Jong Narciso
Literally, “root climbing” (unless you want it to become a 7b). All slab climbing after the ledge.
G. Sunshine** (5.9/5b)
60ft / 1997 FA Erwin Gozum
H. Headache** (5.6)
50ft / 1997FA Agmata, Castor
I. Set-up for the Gift** (5.7)
55ft / 1997 FA Jong Narciso
J. Skinless** (5.10/6a)
45ft / FA Kim Imao, Levi Nahayangan, Ferdie Bulan
What do the asterisks (*) mean?
All those with asterisk (single or double) were listed in the original guidebook, Rockclimbing in Montalban (2000). This means they were bolted 18 years ago at the minimum. Double asterisk means the information was lifted directly from the guidebook (just to give you an idea of what had existed before). These ** routes have not yet been checked / climbed during the recent visits in 2017- 2018. As a safety precaution, we do not recommend that you hop on these routes just yet.
- ALWAYS WEAR A HELMET, whether you’re belaying, climbing, or just chilling. The crag hasn’t been climbed in a long time, and the new routes may still have loose rock.
- This crag is good for a morning session, the sun can fry you by noontime.
- Wear approach shoes for the hike.
- Manage the group size when you visit. It's really only six routes for now (4 clean + 2 projects), plus there are crops around the crag. Let's minimize impact and practice LNT.
- Be proactive in checking the condition of the bolts and hangers of the old routes. Don’t risk it if you think a bolt isn’t in the best condition.
- Follow the usual SOPs: Register at Aling Norma’s Eatery before your climb, and pay the group climbing fee at the Barangay Hall.
- For all sorts of suggestion and feedback, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org