Sign Up  |   Log In:Login with Facebook
REI Community
Stone Mountain South Face
Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Anchor Rode T 
Another Alternative T 
Autumn Speaks T,S 
Banana Breath T 
Between The Ways S 
Block Route T 
Blood On The Tracks T 
Bombay Groove aka Yankee Go Home S 
Captain Crunch T 
Closer to the Heart T 
Crystal Lizard T 
Direct Start to Arch T 
Dirty Crack T 
Dixie Crystals T,S 
Dream On T 
Dream Waves T 
Electric Boobs T 
Entrance Crack T 
Face Value T,S 
Fantastic T,S 
Father Knows Best T 
Fleet Feet T 
Fuddy Mucker/Deception Crack - 5.9 T 
Grand Funk Railroad T 
Great Arch, The T 
Great Brown Way T,S 
Great White Way T 
Impossible Dream T 
Mcgrady's route T 
Mercury's Lead T,S 
No Alternative T 
P.F. Flyers T 
Pandora's Way T 
Peer Pressure T 
Pulpit, The T 
Purple Daze T,S 
Purring, The T 
Rainy Day Women T 
Rice Krispies T 
Scimitar S 
Sermon, The T 
Storm in a Teacup S 
Strawberry Preserves T,S 
Taken For Granite T 
Toilet Bowl T,S 
U Slot T 
Wahoo Start T 
White Way Direct T 
Yardarm T 
Zoo Love T 
Unsorted Routes:

Block Route 

YDS: 5.8- French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 14 British: VS 4c PG13

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 150'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.7+ French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b [details]
FA: unknown
Page Views: 4,675
Submitted By: saxfiend on Mar 12, 2007

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (86)
Your todo list:
Your stars:
Your rating: -none- [change]
Your ticklist: [add new tick]
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [0 people like this page.]
Belaying from bolts on Block Route. The route can...


Like most of the approach climbs for the main South Face, Block Route is a fun and extended route worthy of climbing even if you're not just trying to get to the Tree Ledge. If you want to get a feel for what it's like to climb high above your last gear at Stone Mountain, this is a good place to start. Block Route actually has ample pro placements for good stretches, and the runout sections are easy climbing. The somwhat tenuous block move toward the top is probably the only reason the guidebook gives this a 5.8, and it's well protected.

If you want to do Block Route in two pitches, there are belay anchors halfway up. But unless you're using a 50-meter rope (not a great idea anyway), there's no reason not to combine pitches and save yourself some time.

Starting below the left end of the overlap that extends just below the Tree Ledge, follow a grassy vertical crack and other seams up to belay anchors at a small tree. Belay here, or clip the anchor for pro and continue up to a left-facing dihedral. At the end of the dihedral, make a big move up and right onto the block, then finish to the tree ledge on easier ground, ending at the base of the Great Arch.

A bit of history: Block Route was originally considered the first pitch of the Great Arch.


Block Route is the furthest left of the Tree Ledge approach routes, about 30' left of U Slot. Rap on two ropes from the U Slot anchors; if these are busy, use one of the other bolted rap stations further down the Tree Ledge.


Cams and nuts up to #3 camalot or equivalent. Bolted belay anchors halfway up; sling trees for an anchor at the top.

Photos of Block Route Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: My dad and I climbing to the tree shelf.
BETA PHOTO: My dad and I climbing to the tree shelf.
Rock Climbing Photo: Unknown climber in position to climb over the bloc...
Unknown climber in position to climb over the bloc...
Rock Climbing Photo: start of block route. follow grassy seam to the le...
BETA PHOTO: start of block route. follow grassy seam to the le...
Rock Climbing Photo: RadDawg barely visible behind the block. Photo by ...
RadDawg barely visible behind the block. Photo by ...
Rock Climbing Photo: at rap anchor. clip for pro, then up & right to ne...
BETA PHOTO: at rap anchor. clip for pro, then up & right to ne...
Rock Climbing Photo: Unknown climber on top of the block.
Unknown climber on top of the block.
Rock Climbing Photo: topo for block route. great view's already!
topo for block route. great view's already!
Rock Climbing Photo: Aerial view of two climbers on the Block Route. Ph...
Aerial view of two climbers on the Block Route. Ph...

Comments on Block Route Add Comment
Show which comments
By saxfiend
From: Decatur, GA
Apr 4, 2007

Fun route, easier and not as runout as U Slot to the right.
By Sean Cobourn
From: Gramling, SC
Aug 2, 2007
rating: 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b PG13

Fun for sure, but hardly 5.8. One move wonder at step across move. This move is well protected.
By Ross Purnell
From: Palmyra
Apr 9, 2010

This is more fun, and more mellow than U slot by a long shot. It has a single 5.8 move, the rest is easy climbing.
By Mike Holley
From: Boone, NC
Oct 20, 2011

Its all been said, definitely the simplest way up to tree ledge as well as the best protected. However its still worth a go with the a crux move that leaves the first timer tickled.
By Jay Shultis
From: Blacksburg VA
Nov 7, 2011
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c PG13

Great route with varied climbing through crack, slab and the mentioned mantle/stem move. Must do as a Stone Mountain first timer, due to it's direct link to the base of the Great Arch! Three BOMBER pieces below the crux! Keep in mind that there is a ~35 foot run-out on easy ground between gear. Not recommended as a first lead, confidence on slab will make the run-out seem small. Aside from the crux, it's probably ~5.4 or less the whole way.
By Will Wilson
From: Morganton, nc
Feb 11, 2013
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c PG13

The first time you pull the block it feels scary as hell. i like putting a locker on my pro below it.
By Jonathan Dull
From: Boone, NC
Feb 18, 2013

You can plug a "bomber" yellow or red C3 in the corner before you pull the crux (block) move. Extend it with a long runner and your essentially on top rope for the crux move.
By Crushin' Prussian
From: carrboro, nc
Nov 10, 2013
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13

I agree an easy way to get to the tree ledge. Great way to warm up your Stone Mountain army-crawl technique that you'll be using the rest of the day.
By Nathan Stegenga
From: Central, SC
Oct 8, 2015
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13

Easy, very direct access to the tree ledge. Definitely a big runout between bolts and the C4 #3 slot, but no more than 5.5 or 5.6 slab. The pull over the block is balancy for sure, but just trust your smearing right foot and haul/mantle yourself over. Bomber offset nut placement before the crux move, which felt more like a 5.7 move on lead.

Double ropes needed for rappel from U-Slot anchors.
By Benandstuff
From: Winston-Salem, NC
Nov 9, 2015

This is a great climb that gives you a little taste of Stone at the runout. The block move is...well, I hear there are a lot of ways to do it. I opted to go up to the dihedral to only place gear, then down-climbed to make the mantle onto a bigger foothold near the lip of the block. But I can see how you could also stem from the dihedral with the slightly better hand holds.

The Definitive
Climbing Resource

Inspiration & Motivation
to Fuel Your Run

Next Generation Mountain
Bike Trail Maps

Backcountry, Sidecountry
& Secret Stashes

Better Data. Better Tools.
Better Hikes!