An 870-Stair Approach: This Limestone Climbing Is Insane

Follow along as Jonathan Siegrist climbs some of the most difficult routes in China.

Within China’s southern Guizhou province is a vastly diverse world of rock. Specifically, Guizhou’s Getu Arch — an amalgam of limestone arches covered in pockets, spires, and steep overhangs with mindbending roof moves. And Siegrist attempts to climb it all.

The approach is over 870 ancient stone steps. There’s nowhere to go except up. Siegrist and his climbing partner Greg Kerzhner lace up. The route the duo climbs on the Great Arch (5.13a/9a) is near vertical at first, and then it gets weird.

There’s edging, sideways kneebars, and some pretty impressive on-wall acrobatics. Plus, it’s probably one of the coolest cave sport climbs you’ll see in a while. Says Siegrist in the film, “It’s one of the most unique landscapes in the world … these crazy dots on the landscape in every direction that just go on forever.”

“China” was filmed and directed by Tara Kerzhner and produced by Arc’teryx.

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Mary Murphy

Mary is based out of GearJunkie's Denver, CO office. She has a degree in English and Journalism, and been writing professionally for over five years. Her outdoor interests span from running to sport climbing, from landscape photography to skiing to pack-paddleboarding. If she's not writing, you can most likely find her at the top of a fourteener, or in a local bakery.

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