COVID-19 Climbing Guidelines: The Red River Gorge in the Daniel Boone National Forest, Muir Valley, and all RRGCC-owned property - which includes Miller Fork Recreational Preserve, Bald Rock Recreational Preserve, and Pendergrass-Murray Recreational Preserve - request that you follow the guidelines outlined on each website if you choose to climb during this time. See links above for more details about each climbing area.

Mariba Fork

Grade Trad Mixed Sport Total
5.4 10 - - 10

Directions to Mariba Fork

From the parking lot of the Junior Williamson Rest Area in Slade, turn left (north) on KY 11, drive 0.1 miles under the Mountain Parkway overpass to a "T" intersection with KY 15. Turn left (east) and continue for 1.5 miles, then turn right (north) on KY 77. This highway is also known as "Nada Tunnel Road", and you may see a street sign so designated at this intersection. Drive 4.4 miles through the tiny town of Nada, through the tunnel, and over the steel bridge (stay right after you cross the steel bridge) to the intersection with KY 715. Stay to the left on KY 77 (KY 715 curves to the right) towards Fortress Wall and Phantasia. Stay on KY 77 for about 8 miles until you see Flecher Ridge road on your right. The road angles sharply back to the right. Turn right on this road and drive for about 1.3 miles. Look for Forest Service signs on your left. Shortly after you see the Forest Service signs on your left, look for a field directly after the wooded section ends. Park on your left and hike along the field keeping the wooded section on your left. You will be following an old barbed wire fence. After about 10 minutes the field will meet up with a wooded area. Continue on a trail through the woods, angling slightly left, until you reach the cliff's edge. Head left and look for an obvious dark and narrow corridor heading down to the base of the cliff. Continue down through the corridor and hike down to a creek. Cross the creek and head uphill to the base of the wall which the routes listed in this guide are on. You should come out of the rhodos somewhere near Laceration.

Wall Sun: Unknown

Click the column heads to sort. Hold shift to sort on multiple columns.
Route Spray Name Type Grade Quality User Stars Length Picture


Laceration Trad 5.4
3.83  (30) 50ft


Reach the Beach Trad 5.9
4.00  (15) 75ft


The Mayor Trad 5.10a
2.40  (5) 45ft


Synergy Trad 5.7
3.40  (15) 130ft


Leo Trad 5.5


Rock Lobster Trad 5.8
2.00  (1) 75ft  


Heartbreak of Psoriasis Trad 5.4
2.50  (2) 60ft  


The Gauntlet Trad 5.10a


One Thing Leads to Another Trad 5.8
5.00  (1) 100ft  


Second Thoughts Trad 5.8


ray said on October 26th, 2003
Be sure not to try and exit the wall by following the trail left of Synergy. We tried this and ended up having to get a 15 minute ride back to our cars from a friendly local family.
Anonymous said on March 14th, 2004
the anchors need new slings, or better yet short chains w/ quick links.
Anonymous said on January 5th, 2005
Mariba Walkdown- 37.9002N, 83.5739W, Mariba Laceration Area- 37.9004N, 83.5724W
Anonymous said on January 5th, 2005
Parking area GPS- 37.9004N, 83.5791W
enoch308 said on April 6th, 2005
There is a good reason for these GPS coordinates. It is a bit of a hunt to find. The entrance is cool. But make damn sure you get a fix on how you are getting out, or you will spend a lot of time rhodo thrashing with a full pack of gear and rope uphill trying to find your way back. Needs dry weather.
Anonymous said on September 19th, 2006
Anybody know about the lone renegade sport route I saw at Mariba this weekend, left of "Synergy"? Bad style for the wilderness it is located in.
Ascentionist said on September 19th, 2006
It's been there at least 4 years.
climbhigh said on September 21st, 2006
amazing place !!
Josephine said on May 7th, 2007
i don't understand how everyone's getting lost. i have very little directional sense and it was not hard to locate at all. guide book directions were perfect. it was definately the most BEAUTIFUL hike i've been on yet. made me feel like i was a wondering hobbit. it had rained for several days before and most of the routes were wet. make sure to go there at a dry time. if you're bored on a rest day, this would be a beautiful place just to hike around and explore
Anonymous said on October 17th, 2007
I need to know if we were in the right area. After following the guide book directions which seemed relatively easy we came out of the rhodos at two bolted lines on a less than vertical face. to the right of the bolted lines there was a nice looking dihederal crack with what looked like a bolted anchor/fixed gear at the top near a ledge. We were a little confused and started to think we were in the wrong area b/c there shouldn't be any sport routes there....???? A little confused, please help!!
ynot said on November 5th, 2007
The little rock cairn in the creek was nice for trail finding. Was that you Jo? Reach the Beach was stellar. I agree with the star update. What a great handcrack.
Josephine said on November 6th, 2007
nope. can't claim credit for that, ynot. truth be told, i'm not very a very carin person. ;-) glad you found your way
Anonymous said on April 21st, 2008
Has the crack system/dihedral between the direct start for The Beach and The Mayor been climbed before? My buddy and I did it this past weekend and found no anchors under the large over-hang about 80'-90' up? It's about 5.8 and a quality climb. There is now fixed pro under the large over-hang to descend from.
cliftongifford said on April 22nd, 2008
Beautiful area! We hiked out a totally different way than we came in... it luckily worked out wonderfully... I didn't see any sport routes though, I guess I was just looking for cracks!
corduroy said on May 5th, 2008
why arent the two sport lines and dihederal discussed above on Oct 17th '07 listed as climbs for this area - they are only feet away from synergy
corduroy said on May 5th, 2008
ok - before anyone else asks about the two sport routes i just asked about - search the forum - the subject is discussed in much detail
45percent said on January 16th, 2009
The directions in the guidebook are good, although I suspect the old barbed wire fence it describes has been replaced by a new fence right at the edge of the forest. At any rate, plan to bushwhack a bit if you're not the trespassing type.
Cleveland said on August 5th, 2009
Does this wall stay shaded at all? Thinking about going there Sunday and Temps will be in the 90's. A little shade would be nice. Any info would help.
Anonymous said on August 6th, 2009
It does stay pretty shaded. Be warned: I went out there a couple weeks ago and got a bunch of chigger bites from walking through the field, very unpleasant. The trail is a little tricky to find and refind after going around a fallen tree on the trail
Josephine said on August 7th, 2009
as a head's up, if it has rained recently most of the routes will be dripping wet.
Cleveland said on August 7th, 2009
when was the last time it rained there, if it's been dry for a few days will the rock still be wet?
jrathfon said on October 25th, 2010
Edge of the field and the barbed wire fence for when you are exiting the walkdown and get lost in the downed trees in the dark: 37.89932N 83.57562W
jrathfon said on October 25th, 2010
Let's get that ~ 5.8 dihedral left of reach the beach in the route list, it looks stellar!
Anonymous said on May 4th, 2011
as of now. (May 2011)The trail right after the field is totally blocked by fallen trees, be prepared to walk around, or climb over. Another option is to walk straight past the trees and rappel into the valley, but only do this if you know the area. next time i go i will leave some webbing and rings on a nice tree.
Feanor007 said on October 2nd, 2011
3 parties for 8 total climbers at Mariba yesterday. So much for only 12/year. Any beta on gear routes on the cliffs across the creek from Laceration, et al.?
Wolf said on June 2nd, 2012
I talked to the man who owns the field you hike through on the approach. He's fine with people walking through his field, but he asks that people please stop rolling down the barb wire for the fence to get in, because then his horses get out and he has to go get them.
Wolf said on June 2nd, 2012
If you go around the fallen trees to the right, you are most likely to encounter the cliffline farther to the right than previously. If you do this, then the first dark and narrow corridor you will encounter while heading to the left is not the way down. It cliffs out 40-50 feet above the ground and is dangerous.
rjackson said on September 10th, 2012
Finding the crag is not so hard, but finding routes other than Laceration, Reach the Beach, The Mayor, Synergy and Leo will be full on adventure, and it looks like climbing them will more than likely give you a ground-up experience. Also, be prepared as there's a bit of distance between routes, this ain't no sport crag...
rjackson said on September 10th, 2012
And what is up with the route between Reach the Beach and The Mayor?
dustonian said on July 13th, 2015
Trail through the notch, across the creek, and up to the crag is in good contition once you find it. There is currently a fairly high barbed wire fence blocking your way at the end of the field. You can easily step over it if you're tall enough, or go around it by the red-blazed tree about 50' before the field ends on your left.
dustonian said on July 13th, 2015
Also, anyone done the cool short splitter crack left and around the corner from Synergy?