The mountaintop fortress of Grim Batol.


The gates of Grim Batol.


The first inner gate leading to Grim Batol and guarded by Axtroz of the red dragonflight.

  • Population: Unknown (A mixture of Skardyn and the Red and Black dragonflights, including dragonspawn).
  • Ruler: Garshilan (Red dragonflight), Deathwing (Black Dragonflight)
  • Affiliation: Red dragonflight and Black dragonflight

Grim Batol is a mountain fortress located in the eastern Wetlands. It has great walls and spires that reach toward a steel-gray sky, but the stronghold’s bulk is underground. Founded by Wildhammer dwarves and later captured by orcs, a flight of red dragons now command Grim Batol. The dragons guard a secret power within the fortress and let no one near.[1] (WoWRPG 17)


War of the Three Hammers

After losing in a three way civil war between themselves, the Bronzebeards, and Dark Irons, Khardros of the Wildhammer clan lead his people north through the barrier gates of Dun Algaz. It was here that they founded their own kingdom within the mountain of Grim Batol.

After years of bitterness, Thaurissan, leader of the Dark Iron clan, launched a double-sided attack from his city in the Redridge Mountains against both Ironforge and Grim Batol in hopes of taking all of Khaz Modan. Thaurissan led his forces against Ironforge while his sorceress wife, Modgud, attacked Grim Batol.

The Bronzebeards were able to push back the Dark Iron assault which had been led by Thaurissan at Ironforge. As Thaurissan withdrew to Redridge, Modgud's forces began to break through the gates of Grim Batol. Modgud then used her sorceress powers to call for the shadows from the earth to attack the Wildhammers within their own fortress. The Wildhammers viciously fought back against the shadows and the Dark Iron forces. Finally, Khardros was able to push through the invading onslaught and slay Modgud.

Leaderless, the remaining Dark Irons began to hasty retreat to Redridge only to be intercepted by the Bronzebeard army which had come from Ironforge to assist Grim Batol. The remaining Dark Iron forces were crushed between the Wildhammer and Bronzebeard armies.

Following the total defeat of Thaurissan, the Wildhammers returned to their home in Grim Batol. What they had found was that the death of Modgud had left an evil taint in their fortress. The Wildhammers found Grim Batol uninhabitable and founded a new home in Aerie Peak.

Aftermath of the Second War

During the Second War, Grim Batol was the center of all refining operations for the Horde's navy. It was also the main base of the Horde's dragon breeding program, where Alexstrasza the Red was kept captive and forced to produce red dragons to be used as mounts for orc dragonriders. The Horde used the Demon Soul and Dark Iron chains to control the red brood. Grim Batol remained in orc hands long after the collapse of the Horde and the destruction of the Dark Portal, largely due to the power of their dragons. Eventually, thanks to the efforts of a band of unlikely heroes led by the mage Rhonin, Alexstrasza was freed. The dragon queen immediately set about incinerating every orc she could find, utterly destroying the power of the Dragonmaw clan (in Azeroth) and killing the orc warrior (former warlock/former shaman) Nekros Skullcrusher. The ruins of the orc caravan that tried to escape the fortress can still be seen strewn around the entrance.

Current Status

Grim Batol is currently being guarded by the Red Dragonflight. Something powerful is suspected of being inside, though whether the red dragons work to keep intruders out or whatever they are guarding in (or both), is unknown. The red wyrm Garshilan leads the fortress' defenses, aided by the young Acridistrasz and the Dragonspawn Baleflame.[2] (LoC 73, 74)

In the novel Night of the Dragon, it is revealed that Deathwing, the insane Black Aspect and ancient enemy of Alexstrasza, resides deep inside Grim Batol.

It is possible, at level 70, to ride past all of the dragons guarding Grim Batol (minus a few stationary ones by one of the gates, but an epic mount can easily outrun them). There is not much at the end, though. It eventually evens out into a cliff overlooking south-eastern Wetlands with a large, dwarven door that is very similar to Ironforge. The door is shut and apparently locked as there is no way to do anything to open or activate it; however any hunter can use the Eagle Eye spell to view what is behind the gate. This reveals there is a large wooden door behind the main gate and behind the wooden door there is nothing but a hill.

Grim Batol (dungeon)

This article or section includes speculation, observations or opinions possibly supported by lore or by Blizzard officials. It should not be taken as representing official lore.

Many players believe that Grim Batol will eventually be added to the game as an instanced dungeon, but so far there has been no word from Blizzard to support this theory. Some thought it would appear in the The Burning Crusade expansion, but that didn't happen. Some believed it would open in the Wrath of the Lich King expansion, that also did not happen. More likely, if it is added to the game, it would be a free zone along the lines of Zul'Gurub or Zul'Aman.

Most players now speculate that whenever the Red Dragonflight portion of the Chamber of Aspects is opened so will Grim Batol since it is under control of the Red Dragonflight, but still no word of release has been given.

Grim Batol (zone)

Grim Batol Zone

Grim Batol Zone

There is some implication in the novel Day of the Dragon that Grim Batol may be more than just the fortress in the Wetlands and may also include a zone (also known as Grim Batol) east of the fortress that the hill dwarves took back after the Second War. The hill dwarves were able to claim the mountain fortress and all of Grim Batol as theirs again.[3] (DotD 371) This area was known for its crags.[3] (DotD 164) It is also treated as its own zone in Lands of Conflict.[2] (LoC 73) In the Eastern Kingdom's map in World of Warcraft, there is an unfinished zone to the east of the Wetlands and Loch Modan. This subzone in the Wetlands could act as an entrance to the zone in the future.

In Lands of Conflict, Grim Batol is listed as its own independent zone, lying in the eastern Wetlands, just below the great falls of Loch Modan (you have to travel through the Wetlands to get to it)[2] (LoC 73), and mentions that the bulk of Grim Batol is underground. More Magic & Mayhem discusses a mountain range near Grim Batol called the Great Bulwarks.

In World of Warcraft

File:Eastern khaz.gif
In game it is a narrow, coastal zone east of the Wetlands and Loch Modan on the eastern coast of the Eastern Kingdoms. It appears on most world maps and is clearly demarcated, but lacks significant information. Perhaps it will never open as it might be just a sea wall of cliffs with no living creatures, but the Loch Modan map seems to suggest some flatter coastal land. It can be accessed via clever mountain climbing, but it is merely a bunch of hills with sheared, simple ground textures common to the connected zones (including the Great Sea).

Currently, the area in the Wetlands is populated by various elite level 60+ red dragonkin and Axtroz, a mighty red drake.

Blizzard Quotes

Back before the closed Beta, Tigole mentioned interesting details about Grim Batol.

2003-12-08 06:01 | Tigole
The eastern section of Wetlands is reserved for a special, max level quest event. The event is not currently in the beta. For those of you interested with the lore of that area, read the novel, Day of the Dragon. That's Grim Batol at the top of the hill there... You can also see the wrecked orc caravan >=]

This is probably referring to the quest that Horde players must undertake to get their Onyxia keys.

2003-12-04 07:00 | Tigole
The locked doors to Grim Batol lie at the top of the red dragon gauntlet in northeastern Wetlands. This is the one area of the Wetlands that is not yet populated with creatures. We have very specific plans for this area >=) For those of you familiar with Warcraft lore, you'll notice the remains of the orc caravan which the red dragon flight destroyed in *Day of the Dragon* not far from Grim Batol.

Most recently, after BlizzCon 2007, Bornakk had this to say concerning future development of Grim Batol:

2007-08-22 19:22 | Bornakk
I believe the same question was brought up in one of the developer panels at BlizzCon, unfortunately the answer to this is the same as it’s been in the past. Grim Batol is one of a number of areas we would like to bring into World of Warcraft at some point in the future, but we have to wait until it feels right to do so.

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