One of the thickest limestone strata of the world
height of approximately 2400 meters
located 40 ain northeast of Iran
about 1200 meters high above the City of Bisotun
1320 meters above sea level
The length of the collection of rock walls is about 30 kilometers
the 752 meter deep Cave of Parau is located
to all the climbers participating in this magnificent festival, and particularly, to the foreign rock climbers and members of the international organization of High Mountains (GHM), who have enhanced the quality and level of this athletic event.
Dear friends, We have the honour of hosting you in a country with 7000-year-old culture and civilization, and is considered as one of the most historical countries of the world.
This Festival will be organized by Groupe de Haute Montagne which is an international organization based in France, I.R.Iran Mountaineering and Sport Climbing Federation, and the Alpine Club of Iran, from October 16 to October 23, 2010 in collaboration with the Government Office in Kermanshah (ostandari), the Cultural Heritage Organization, and the Red Crescent Society.
It is a pleasure to have the honor of hosting you in the beautiful Iran, in the spectacular Kermanshah, and in the unique Bisotun, and we believe that you already appreciate the value and significance of this enormous wall.
Our splendid Iran, which enjoys such heavenly gifts and invaluable natural assets, mountains, rock walls, caves, and plains, also is home to a plethora of talented adroit mountaineers, rock-climbers, cave- and desert-trekkers, that a number of them as representatives of this huge community will accompany us in the festival.
We hope that holding the International rock-climbing festival in Bisotun not only will introduce attractions of this unparalleled wall and expand tourism, but it also will provide a valuable opportunity to establish friendships, exchange experiences, and share technical knowhow. These are the objectives to which Iranian Mountaineering and Sport Climbing Federation pays special attention; specifically, we are willing to expand relations and interactions with the GMH in a variety of fields.
Kermanshah, and the beautiful city of Bisotun, captures the eyes of every spectator like a shining jewel. On the one hand, there are civilized and historical antiquities such as Darius the Great Inscription of Behistun and Achaemenid drawings and carvings; on the other hand, there is the great rock-wall of Bisotoun with a height of 1200m and a width of 5km, as the highest and the widest wall of Iran. The powerful hands of Iranian rock climbers have opened tens of routs on this enormous wall.
Bisotun or Bisotoon Mountain, with a height of approximately 2400 meters, is located 40 ain northeast of Iran. The southern side of this mountain is in its entirety a vertical rock formation that faces the Hamadan-Kermanshah Road. This huge formation is about 1200 meters high above the City of Bisotun which itself is 1320 meters above sea level. The length of the collection of rock walls that extend from the City of Bisotun to close to the city of Kermanshah is about 30 kilometers. Close to the city of Kermansh, this massif joins the Parau Cliff and Taagh-e-Bostaan. Hence, it can be included that this area offers excellent rock climbing opportunities. This mountain contains one of the thickest limestone strata of the world in which, the 752 meter deep Cave of Parau is located
The bisotun mountain is a rich habitat that contains all sorts of wildlife such as leopard, ibex, and birds, as well as trees such as juniperus. Hence, the native hunters and wood gatherers have been skillfully climbing the Bisotun rock walls in a manner that surprise the visitors.
Naser Al-Din Shah, a king from the Qajar Dynasty, who ruled Iran between 167- 118 years ago, while traveling to Karbala, located in today>s Iraq, wrote in his diary about the incredible manner the local mountain scramblers had climbed Bisotun to create a fire on top of the mountain at night.
Henry Rawlinson (1810-1895), an English orientalist who was able to decipher and read the inscriptions carved on Bisotun rock wall, received help from a local youth to make plaster forms of the inscriptions. Also, the first modern mountaineers who started climbing Bisotun about 40 years ago, had witnessed a local wood gatherer who was climbing the wall utilizing wooden wedges in rock crevices. In March 1969, some of the members of Abarmard Mountaineering Club were the first to climb the Bisotun wall with modern techniques and aims (such as sport and entertainment). The members of the group who undertook this climb were: EbrahimBabayee, KiumarsBabazadeh, GholamhoseinVahabzadeh and BijanSadeghi. RafikMinasyan and MohamadArzi played a support role to the main team. The route the team took to climb Bisotun was subsequently named the Abarmard Route. Today, this route is sometimes called Harry Rhost Route, after the name of the Austrian climber.
The first two winter ascents of Bisotun were undertaken by two independent groups in February 1982 climbing the Abarmard route: 1. Kermanshah Group (MohamadBagherEivazi et al); 2. Tehran Group (MohamdMovasegh, Abbas Mohammadi, DariushBabazadeh and VahidAsgari) .
In the eastern, southern, and western foot of BisotunMoutnain, is located the vast Bisotun meadow through which Gamasiab River passes. This fertile plateau is one of the ancient agricultural centers, and a cradle of civilization. This area contains some unique monuments, the most significant of which is Bisotun Inscription. This inscription is the most extensive carved inscriptions of the world as well as the oldest form of Persian literature belonging to the Achaemenid period. UNESCO has recongnized this site as one of «human heritage» sites of the world. This monument was created on the orders of Darius the First, an Achaemenid King (ruling Persian Empire between 486 and 521 BC), to provide a narrative of his conquests. The carved narrative is 22 meters in length and 8.7 in width, and is in three languages of Dariush>s domain: Old Persian, Ilami, and Babilonian. Next to the narrative, there is a stonecutting of Faravahar (the ancient Persian God) as well as King Dariush and the leaders of the defeated rebellion against Dariush. This stonecutting is 48.5 by 3 meters.
The Bisotun region contains a collection of historical monuments and objects that include: stonecuttings, inscriptions, statues, temples and carvanserays that belong to long and diverse historical periods: cavemen, Medes, Achaemenids, Ashkanies, Selukids, Sasanids and the post-Islamic period of Iranian history.
The karvanseray that is scheduled to house the guests of Bisotun Rock Climbing Festival belongs to the peridod of Shah Abbas II, 16th Century Safavid Iran.
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