It was my third time in Wadi Rum, but the first time on Pillar of Wisdom. Why? Well mostly because I was always sure there is more walking than climbing and because I'm getting older I prefer climbing over walking. It turned out that I was really wrong because there is definitely a lot of climbing on that route. Mainly easy climbing, but with a few spicy parts like 5+ traverse, in the middle of the wall, or 6b section at the very end of the route!
Description from Tony Howard's : A superb route on a good rock giving open and continuously enjoyable climbing and saving the crux for the very last moves. 350 metres in total, with 250 metres on the pillar. Verdict of subsequent ascentionist, “worth three stars.”
So after all I'm not surprised that The Pillar of Wisdom is one of the biggest classics of the Wadi Rum. To be honest after I came back home I started to wonder which team had bigger balls...Howard, Colonna and Taylor who made a first ascent of The Pillar in 1986 or maybe Baker, Shaw, Taylor and Howard who did first recorded ascent of Hammad's Route in 1984.
Even though the crux part of The Pillar of Wisdom is bolted in my opinion it is not easy. It's safe but not easy. Even my friend told me once "I'm always doing the move, but I always feel like I can fall". Well, I felt exactly the same. Also IMHO I think that even if you do A0 it still will be hard to get through the final section, but it's also possible I'm wrong because I was just tired after the whole day of climbing with the backpack... Apart from that the descent by the Hammad's Route is totally different story! I can't imagine how they were walking on those unprotected slabs back in 1986. Now we were using good shoes with Vibram rubber at the bottom, we were shitting our pants on some steep sections. And there is no protection that will keep you safe from falling! Big respect to all of them! This route is for sure three stars and I totally recommend it! It shows the true spirit of climbing in Wadi Rum!
As always big thanks to weld.pl for the support!