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Summary

An alternative to getting harassed at the Sipi's main crag, the routes aren't as good, but still worth a trip, especially if looking for some easier routes and want the option to only tope rope.

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Description

Chema is a small crag located amongst beautiful farms, friendly people and virgin rock. The rock quality is poorer, which is probably why it hasn't been climbed or developed further. If you don't want to lead climb, you can scramble to access the belay chains and setup top-ropes on all the routes except Friends Remain Friends, which requires a rap in to setup.

There are seven bolted routes for top rope, four of which are bolted for lead climbing. The six lead climbs are only 10m, one top rope climb is 25m. Grades range from 17-25. Rock is conglomerate, loose and poor quality. View is amazing. No toilets or showers in this bush, but locals have pit latrines you can use. Trad climbing in this area does not look possible as rocks are mostly slab and quality is generally poor for pro.

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Access issues

Park at the general store in Chema run by Colin. Access is free. Parking is 3k per car. Consider hiring someone at the general store to guide you back to the crag for another 2k. It is a bit hard to find your way through the maze of local farms and houses and paying a few shillings for parking and guidance on the approach can go a long way with in positive relations with the local community.

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Approach

Head out of Sipi Falls. You’ll pass Chebonet and then arrive at the small town of Chema just less than ten minutes from Sipi's center. Park on the left at the general store operated by Colin: 0758 985 619.

1.35916667, 34.38916667 Colin’s shop sells bread, some produce, and water as well as other food/snacks climbers might find useful. If you want to hire a guide contact Backson 0705 528 981 or Peter: 0779 971 682. Free access for climbers to the rock has been promised by both Peter and Backson in cooperation with Sipi River Lodge (unofficial). Some small donation to the local community would be appreciated, but don’t feel obligated. Backson and Peter run a 83 meter abseil nearby for about 50 USD, but they are also climbers and they know the area and can help with local access should anyone try to prevent you from climbing. Hike down into the valley from the road past the coffee factory, which smells fantastic, and down the to the falls. Head right to the rock once you reach the falls. Colin or one of the guides can show you the way. In total, the hike from your car to the crag is about 15 mins or so. Depending on the trail you take, the last 100m is a very steep scramble down to the rock.

Coordinates of the belay area are: 1.3601077,34.383892. There are numerous ways to get to the belay area. Best pay someone 2k to walk you back. Have a friendly chat and try to keep up good relations with the local community.

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Where to stay

You can camp near the crag by asking locals for permission and paying a small fee. Or, stay in Sipi Falls which has lots of options.

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Ethic

Access is free to climbers, but this depends on climbers supporting the local community as much as possible. So, buy local, stay local, support the local economy as much as possible.

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History

View historical timeline

This was bolted in July 2015 as an alternative to the tension at Sipi's main wall.

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Some content has been provided under license from: © Matt Battani (Matt Battani)

Routes

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Grade Route

FA: Pierre Gay Perret

FA: Pierre Gay Perret

You must build and anchor above the cliff, rap over the side and swing in to access this chain to set the top rope for Friends Remain Friends.

FA: Pierre Gay Perret

FA: Pierre Gay Perret

FA: Pierre Gay Perret

Activity

Check out what is happening in Chema.