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climbing in halong bay

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anyone been there and can tell me of their adventures?

I'll be there for 3 weeks starting end of Jan '07.

Trying to find topos, guidebooks, partners etc.

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Here are some maps and topos given to me by Todd Skinner and Paul Piana...


A topo of the "Laughing Dog Wall" is included along with a very poor topo of the "Flying Fish Beach."


On the copy of my tourist map, you will see that I've also listed "Dynamite Fishing" which is a colonette similar to Rodeo at Cimai. After climbing it, we removed the bolt hangers to re-use elsewhere. "One Pillar Pagoda" is a spectacular needle with an incredibly thin and fragile appearing base, is also bereft of hangers.


The "Laughing Dog Wall" is the cliff I would recommend that you find and climb on. The routes are all of outstanding quality. Our routes are indicated by A., B., C., etc. A French team just returned from there and added the routes numbered (1., 2., 3., etc.) on Laughing Dog Wall. I gave the number of stars they indicated, and I'm sure that they are fine routes, because the rock on this wall is very good. As yet, I do not have them on up-dated topos but since you got this far, you should be able to sort it out. "Dragon Lady" is the most easily located, prominent feature, but the climbing is of lesser quality than any of the routes on "Laughing Dog Wall."


I had a tremendous problem trying to obtain a quality scan of the map and topos. The map will be of most use. With it, any boatman in Bai Chai should be able to get you to any of the climbs listed. Don't forget to obtain a small "basket boat" so that you may row from your motor boat to the base of the climbs! The topos are marginally useful, due to our incompetence with a scanner. I will re-type the route info on the "Laughing Dog Wall" topo and the "Flying Fish Beach" topo, below.


The Laughing Dog Wall (climbs listed from left to right):


A. *** Golden Pleasures .12a 9 clips. Outstanding pulling on edges. A gorgeous golden wall.

B. * Good Morning Vietnam .11b. 8 Clips. If you look closely, inside of a hueco on this route

there appears to be appears to be a sort-of pagoda-shape.

1. *** Born on the 23d of November. .13a. 8 clips.

2. *** Turner Joy. .12c. 8 clips.

C. ** Seventeen Kings .12b. Unusual linked pockets for a crack-like feature.

3. ** Triangle of Gold. .12b. 8 clips. 30m.

D. ** Green Coffee Girl .12c. One hard move near beginning.

E. *** Laughing Dog .12d. Superb flanges and rills. Located directly below a colonette that

resembles a laughing dog (if you use your imagination).

F. *** Bamboo Curtain .13a. Outstanding pockets, underclings. Powerful and fun.

G. ** Gecko Whiskey .12a. Short, powerful, fun. Can finish on rt H. May also finish on 5th bolt.

H. ** Dust Of The Earth .11d. Long, rising traverse. Crux right away. Climbs through huge


I. *** Dragon Money (Long Dong) .11b !!! Super Fun!!! Super Classic!! Simply outstanding!

Appears to be .13, but is much easier!

J. ** White Feather (Long Tr 'ang du K' ich) .12a. Classic and pumping. Follows a thin

"feathered" white streak. Shares anchor with Dragon Money.

4. *** Between Heaven And Earth. .12c.

5. *** I haven't the name for this one yet. .11c.

K. * Red Sails 5.9. Some bolts and threads, plus a few nuts or cams.

6. ** Tiger Heart. .11a.

7. *** Red Flower. .12a. 60 M rope required!!!!!

8. ** Full Metal Plaquette. 13m (shorter route)

9. ** Pointed Hat. .11d.

10. *** Vampirella. .10d.

11. *** Accu Puncture. 5.9.


The Flying Fish Beach (Climbs listed left to right):


This is a lovely beach which is completely submerged at high tide. There is a tunnel or arch leading from this beach through the island! Across the bay is another rock which I believe is named something like "The Pear" which can be seen pictured on post cards. There is a nice beach at its base, though the wall above isn't as nice as the Flying Fish Beach walls.


1. ** Bridge Walker 12a. Short, 25-30 foot-high bulge. (Located 300 feet left of rt. # 2.)

2. * Fish Wings .11d. Lots of bridging in shallow corner.

3. * Giang (Autumn River) .13b. Crux near 4th clip.

4. ** Bac Ho (Uncle Ho) .12a. Fun, pumping. Shares anchor with #3.

5. ** Squid Legs .12a. Possible to eliminate sharp boulder problem at start by pulling on nut.

6. *** Water Puppet .13d. Outrageous, cool underside of arch. Beautiful reflections!9








Sorry about the quality....I hope you can read them!


Shammick Byszewski was there as well and put up some routes... you can contact him at: retroboltth99-at-yahoo.com



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Oh Yeah...Shammick may be in Thailand right now....so don't be surprised if it takes a month to hear from him.


ps... you always find exactly what you're looking for. wink.gif

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ooooooooooookay. Those grades are a tad high for me frown.gif. I'm only a 5.10 climber at best. Say, I live in Vancouver too. If you care to meet up and tell me about your adventures there, PM me.

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I climbed there in November of 1999 and put up a few new routes that will one day be discovered by some adventurous person. Couldn't really tell you where they are other than on an island called "three peach beach" translated to English. I'm sure everything has changed a bit since being there, but one thing I can say is to watch out for sharp items on the beaches (glass, needles, etc.) and don't climb on the rock that is less than vertical despite how inviting it looks from below. It is extremely sharp and dangerous. The overhanging light colored rock is where the good climbing is.


Have fun and don't forget to learn some of the language before you go. It's easy and it makes a better impression on the local people.

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