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Shortoff Mountain
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Unsorted Routes:

Dopey Duck 

YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI British: HVS 5a

   
Type:  Trad, 3 pitches, 350'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.9 French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI British: HVS 5a [details]
FA: Tom Howard and Jim Okel
Page Views: 8,430
Submitted By: Danny Inman on May 29, 2007
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You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (59)
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Luke catching air on the Duck, Shortoff, NC.
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  • Description 

    P1-(100') Two options: (a) 5.8 : scramble to the top of the large detached block (roughly 20' off the ground) and climb the crack to a belay alcove about 10' above a dead stump in the crack (b) 5.9 : Take the first pitch of Toxic Shock, this is a highly recommended and more direct start that follows a right-leaning crack to the same belay as mentioned above. This "finger-crack" is deceptively steep and sustained for the 100' to the belay.

    P2- (100') 5.9: From the belay, follow the crack up a short ways and cut left at the first opportunity to a shallow right-facing dihedral. At this point the holds are jugs and the face is dead vertical, however, as one climbs higher the holds become smaller and the face gets steeper to just past vertical. The face begins to turn back down just below a small roof, pull the roof on monster jugs and head to a large ledge to belay. This pitch is definitely in my top 5 of the best 5.9s that I have done anywhere.

    P3- (150') 5.6 Climb a short headwall and follow the least lichenous way to the top.


    Location 

    From the bottom of the descent gully take a right and follow the trail to the base of the cliff at the first opportunity. The route begins either just left of or on top of a large detached block with some rhodo growing between it and the wall.


    Protection 

    Standard rack up to #2 Camalot. Emphasis on finger-sized cams.



    Photos of Dopey Duck Slideshow Add Photo
    Elizabeth pulling some of the last moves on the crux pitch.
    Elizabeth pulling some of the last moves on the cr...
    Party finishing up pitch 2.
    Party finishing up pitch 2.
    BirminghamBen cruising the crux pitch of Dopey!
    BirminghamBen cruising the crux pitch of Dopey!
    Dopey Duck 5.9, Shortoff, NC follows the steep lichen free path through incredible horizontals.
    BETA PHOTO: Dopey Duck 5.9, Shortoff, NC follows the steep lic...
    Mike Holley cruising through the pumpy horizontals on the second pitch of Dopey Duck. Steep!!
    BETA PHOTO: Mike Holley cruising through the pumpy horizontals...
    Dopey Duck, Shortoff, NC.
    Dopey Duck, Shortoff, NC.
    Mike starts up the second pitch of Dopey Duck.
    BETA PHOTO: Mike starts up the second pitch of Dopey Duck.
    John and I at the First belay ledge!
    John and I at the First belay ledge!
    Barry in the Business, killer climbing
    Barry in the Business, killer climbing
    Comments on Dopey Duck Add Comment
    Show which comments
    Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated May 28, 2013
    By Rob Dillon
    May 30, 2007

    The Duck rules!

    Toxic Shock is a pretty good way to start, if you're both leading 5.9.

    A 60m got me to the top on p2 last time, but I could feel it.

    By Nick Stayner
    From: The Magic City
    Jun 5, 2007

    I've never placed a piece in the "finger crack". Great horizontals every few feet!

    By Jeff Mekolites
    From: HOTlanta, GA
    Oct 10, 2007
    rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI E1 5a

    I saw a quote online supposedly from Doc Bayne...something to the effect of "if that thing was anymore 5.9, it would be 5.11..."

    By Luke Alford
    From: Atlanta, GA
    Nov 19, 2007

    That was absolutely an awesome route, definitely a must do for Shortoff. I also liked toxic shock as an aesthetic first pitch, though many folks seem to disagree. Jeff, thanks for catching that shot of me taking the ride. That's the best looking picture I've ever seen of me climbing, err... falling.

    By Jeff Mekolites
    From: HOTlanta, GA
    Nov 19, 2007
    rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI E1 5a

    Luke, I have more pictures from that weekend...I will get a disk to y'all.

    By Mike_ClimbNC
    From: Boone, NC
    Mar 26, 2008
    rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a

    Amazing route. It's a shame I didn't get out to do it sooner.

    By charlie collins
    Nov 3, 2008

    thanks for the toxic shock suggestion for the first pitch. it was really nice. the whole route was amazing.

    By cshuey77
    From: Asheviile,nc
    May 27, 2010
    rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a

    N.C must do!!

    By Ryan Williams
    Administrator
    From: London (sort of)
    Oct 21, 2011
    rating: 5.8+ 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c

    Can't believe it took me so long to do this thing. Excellent!

    We did it in two pitches to the big ledge and then soloed the last "5.6" pitch. No real 5.9 moves on this climb, but it sure packs a pump. We did the Toxic Shock start which also felt more like stiff 5.8 to me... either way, a 5.8 climber would probably not do well on the second pitch, hence the 5.9 grade.

    By DrewF
    Nov 16, 2011

    I agree with Ryan's last post. I was sort of nervous about climbing it because of all the talk about the rating being possibly sandbagged. I would call it 5.9 for the pump. Toxic shock was an awesome suggestion for the start, great crack to climb up. Entire route takes good gear and was the best climb I did at the gorge.

    By Dustin Stephens
    Jul 27, 2012
    rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a

    Spectacular!

    By Mike Holley
    From: Boone, NC
    Sep 16, 2012

    Phenomenal Route! If you have a chance, get on it! This route has got it all, super fun from beginning to start. The second pitch is fantastic, no shortage of great holds and excellent placements, though making placements will surely pump you out so plug and go! Great exposure, great pro, great moves, Great Route!!

    Make sure to bring a handful of c3's for the second pitch!!

    • *Must DO**

    By sanz
    From: Raleigh, NC
    Nov 5, 2012

    Fun route. No hard moves, but for a while, those horizontals aren't quite as juggy as they look! Definitely packs a pump. Also recommend the Toxic Shock start. I do disagree that this is "the" 5.9 at Shortoff... I thought Construction Job was better.

    By Neil Rankin
    From: Greensboro, NC
    Apr 22, 2013
    rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a

    Do the more aesthetic first pitch of Toxic Shock to the ultra classic 2nd pitch of Dopey.

    By Drew Hayes
    From: Charlotte, NC
    May 28, 2013

    I find myself daydreaming about this route all of the time. The second pitch is absolutely perfect rock climbing.