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Dibba Climbing, Wadi Khab El Shamis, Musandam, Oman

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Dibba, border town between the Emirates and Musandam, the Omani enclave to the north of the Peninsula. From here, heading north up the main wadi and before reaching Wadi Bih, there is a series of small, interesting and well-equipped sport climbing areas: Nant Bidy, Blind Spot, The Narrows, The Ranch. The routes are very close to the road, so you can move from one route to another or from one sector to another to stay in the shade. The only problem is crossing the border, which has become complicated in recent years, particularly for residents of the Emirates. You have to obtain prior authorization, usually by booking a hotel in Dibba, or benefit from the organization of a sporting event such as the Wadi Bih Run. As a result, we're rarely there, and that's a shame.


Technical summary

Access to the place

From Dubai, take the E611 north, then, before Ras Al Khaimah, turn east onto the E87 towards Dibba. Arriving in Dibba, follow the sea to the border post. Then take the main track up the wide wadi. Nano Bidy is first on the left, then Blid Spot. At the 1st sharp left-hand bend, The Ranch and then The Narrows.

Itinerary description

Course Les voies

They are in order of entry into the Wadi Khan El Khamis.


The 1st sector from Dibaba. From the parking lot, it's a short walk to the entrance to the gorge (obvious).

Main Slab

Departures from the wadi bed on the left.

Searching for Darkness and Light (26m, V+)

Warm-up route with 1 step at mid-height. 1st pitch of the corner route. We can continue on a large equipped route:

L2 (6a, 42m)

Exit the belay to the right by traversing, then climb straight up or slightly to the right. An overhanging and very airy passage at 2/3 before joining the R2 on a ramp. Be careful, the rock moves...

L3 (6b+, 20m)

Climb the ramp to reach the dihedral. Very well equipped, but the second part is really hard: slippery holds, overhanging passage.

L4 (6b, 20m)

Difficult belay exit with 2 overhanging steps, thin holds. Easier afterwards. Very fine slab finish.

Disco Dancer (20m, 6b)

Very fine, sustained route completely to the right. Scrapers and mini-reglettes.

Rock It (20m, 6c)

The must of the sector, a big pitch at the start with a delicate reta, then a slab passage in the middle. Sustained finish on gravel.

Hanging Garden

Departures from the top via a ramp. Very difficult routes from 6b to 7a/7b, overhanging, untested.


Park on the roadside. The routes are on the right, on the small cliff.

The Strand (15m, IV+, 7 quickdraws)

An easy route, but perhaps worth a 5a.

East Karakoram (25m, IV+, 11 quickdraws)

Original route with a nice traverse before finishing on a more vertical slab. Worth a 5a here too.

Lily Feet (20, V, 7 quickdraws)

Here too, a traverse to the belay shared with the neighbor on the left. Could be worth a small V+.

Daisy Chain (15m, V+, 7 quickdraws)

A difficult and tricky pitch to get out of at the start, worth more than V+ (6a?). Then easier.


In the bend, park at the foot of the routes. The names of the routes don't always correspond with the official topo, so you'll have to go back to confirm them.

Route 6a (25m)

To the right after the double bend. Long, thin route in a very steady 6a.

Cowboy Up (6c, 15m)

In the center of the right wall. Very nice rock. Athletic start, a fine step halfway up and an overhang to negotiate with mini holds higher up. Very nice length.

route 6b+ (25m)

Just to the right of the previous route. 1st part in V+ to reach an overhanging dihedral. Rather complicated exit on the ridge. Strong finish.

6a chimney route (20m)

In the second bend, to the right. Original route, points quite far apart. Permanent opposition.

route 6b+ (15m)

To the right of the chimney. very fine start on polished rock. then a large overhanging passage with good holds to exit in athletic recovery. Fine finish on sharp pico.


Park left or right in a recess. Tracks on either side of the road.

Razorback (20m, V+, 8 quickdraws)

Beautiful slab route with a finer passage in the middle. Sustained V+.

Lone Ranger (18m, V, 7 quickdraws)

Easier than its neighbor. A small overhang at the end.

Snake Farm (15m, V+, 5 quickdraws)

Rated V but worth at least V+. Some overhang and dirty rock, good holds sometimes round.

Leap Frog (17m, 6a, 5 quickdraws)

Rated V+ but worth 6a. The end is especially exposed, with the belay difficult to reach.

Map & topo

Topo The Ranch in PDF (Climb Fit Middle east)


22 février 2013 (Blind Spot)

20 janvier 2013 (The Ranch)

19 janvier 2013 (Nant Bidy)


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