The Hole at Rodellar – Rodellar, Spain - Atlas Obscura

The Hole at Rodellar

Rodellar, Spain

An arresting arch punched straight through a mountain provides one of the most scenic spots, and challenging climbs, on the planet. 


A lot of places get labeled a hole in the wall. The historic Old Absinthe House in New Orleans qualifies as a hole in the wall. The Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum might be called a hole in the wall theater by others. Some people even carve holes into rocky mountainsides to live in, like the famous “Hole in a Rock” home in Moab, Utah.

But no metaphor can compare to the real thing, and that’s exactly what one finds at Rodellar in the mountains of Spain.

The region of Rodellar is a haven for rock climbers from all parts of the world, featuring some of the most challenging and unique rock climbing areas on the planet in Spain’s Sierra de Guara mountains. Most striking of them all is “The Hole” at Rodellar, which is quite literally a hole in the wall.

Only the wall, in this case, is a massive mountainside, and the proverbial hole is a more-than one hundred foot-high arch seemingly purposefully carved through the rock.

And purpose is what it attracts, with hundreds of the hardest of the hardcore in the climbing community making the pilgrimage to Rodellar annually to climb up, down, and upside-down in its many and varied unique formations.

It doesn’t get more unique than a hole carved straight through a mountain, providing stunning vistas on either side of the climber as one makes his way up an increasingly challenging vertical-to-horizontal climbing surface.

The faint of heart need not fear, however – looking is just as good as climbing for some visitors to this remote and arresting landscape, complete with the famous hole as well as several other arches, bends, and rocky backbones.

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July 2, 2012

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