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Leda

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Ancient of Days 
Anubis 
Battered Women 
Blood Covenant 
Bone-Yard PickN 
Brass Monkey 
Chip Away 
Cracked Actor 
Cumberland Blues 
Eagle Wings 
Fanfair 
Free to Think 
Girls Only 
Good and Plenty 
Gotten Goat 
Grail Saga, The 
House of Giza 
Immortal Altar 
Jody's Route (aka The Chris' Route) 
Knock on Rock 
Lock Down 
Lolita's Deluge 
Margin Walker 
My Little Patina 
Oh So Sweet 
Old Foot 
One and Lonely, The 
One Percent 
Optimus Prime 
Ox Crack 
Playground Medley 
Psychotic Reaction 
Relapse 
Smoke 
Speedway Boogie 
TJ's Demise 
University Route 
Varmint 
Vogen Slab 
Walk By Me 
Unsorted Routes:

Rest Day:
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Leda 


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Location: 35.2356, -85.2265 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 27,643
Administrators: saxfiend, Brad "Stonyman" Killough, Kristine Hoffman
Submitted By: saxfiend on Nov 17, 2006
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10+ trad line in middle area

Description 

Convenient location, easy approach, nice rock, a mix of trad and sport climbs -- what more could you want from a climbing destination? Well . . . in the case of Leda -- longer routes and more of them. But this little roadside crag is still a worthwhile destination when you have limited time or T-Wall is closed for hunting.

The history of climbing at Leda is not well documented, and little first-ascent information is recorded in any known guides. For years, the only guide to the place was some photocopied pages that referred to the routes by letters of the alphabet. The most recently published Dixie Cragger's Atlas shows the routes by their actual names; this is mostly based on a handwritten guide by Matt Sims. Probably the most current resource (other than this site, of course) is Micah Gentry's PDF guide, which can be found here. This appears to get frequent updates by the author; it also includes Lower Leda, located just down the road.

Like other crags in the Chattanooga area, Leda is a sandstone cliff. The rock quality is mostly very good, and a nice variety of routes can be found here. Many of these are sport lines, with a number of easy routes ideal for the climber making his or her first lead. Probably the most popular route at Leda is Jody's Route, also known as Chris' Route, an outstanding 5.10c/d either way you choose to call it.

There's also enough good trad climbing at Leda to make bringing your rack worthwhile. Nice routes to scope out include Ox Stone Crack (5.8+) and Cracked Actor (5.10).

Leda is on privately-owned land, and a one-time liability waiver is required. A short distance along the trail is a climbers kiosk placed by the Southeastern Climbers Coalition, where you can find the form to fill out and deposit in a holding box.

Editor's note on ratings: My experience of climbing at Leda is that many, if not most, of the easy to moderate routes are harder than the grade in the DCA. In some cases, I've taken the liberty of giving these routes ratings that I think are more in line with what you'll encounter at other local crags such as T-Wall or Foster Falls; in each case, I've also listed the rating given in the book. Anyone who disagrees with this rating method is welcome to contact me, or better yet, give it your own consensus rating.


Getting There 

From downtown Chattanooga, go north on U.S. 27 toward Dayton. Take the Chickamauga Dam exit; going left from the exit, drive almost three miles to the second traffic light. Turn left here onto Montlake Mountain Road. After passing a sharp hairpin turn, go up the hill to the second of two pulloffs on the right. Park here and hike back down the road a short distance to a trail leading up to the crag. The trail is steep but nice and short.

The roadside pulloff has limited parking, so if it's full, go back down the hill and park and hike back up. Further up the hill from the pulloff is a golf course/country club type facility; do not under any circumstances park there!


40 Total Routes


['4 Stars',1],['3 Stars',17],['2 Stars',21],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]
['<=5.6',1],['5.7',5],['5.8',4],['5.9',8],['5.10',12],['5.11',6],['5.12',4],['5.13',0],['>=5.14',0],['',0],['<=V1',0],['V2-3',0],['V4-5',0],['V6-7',0],['V8-9',0],['V10-11',0],['V12-13',0],['>=V14',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Leda:
Fanfair   5.7 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Anubis   5.7 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b     Sport, 1 pitch, 40'   
Walk By Me   5.7 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Speedway Boogie   5.7+ 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Ox Crack   5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c     Trad   
Free to Think   5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c     Trad, 1 pitch, 60'   
House of Giza   5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Old Foot   5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 75'   
TJ's Demise   5.9 5c 17 VI HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Optimus Prime   5.9+ 5c 17 VI E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch   
Girls Only   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Cracked Actor   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   
Smoke   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Oh So Sweet   5.10- 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a PG13     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   
Lolita's Deluge   5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ E3 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Jody's Route (aka The Chris' Route)   5.10c/d 6b+ 21 VII+ E3 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   
Lock Down   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   
Varmint   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- E4 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   
Margin Walker   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- E4 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   
Psychotic Reaction   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   
Browse More Classics in Leda

Featured Route For Leda
Cracked Actor 5.10a

Cracked Actor 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ E1 5a  TN : Leda
Probably the nicest trad line at Leda. Great pro all the way makes some of the dicey moves more mentally bearable.Start as for Free to Think, bouldering up through the juggy roof to a ledge. Move left to the obvious crack in the left face; follow this feature as it turns into a short, awkward off-width. After negotiating the off-width, continue up the thinning finger crack, saving some reserves for a juggy but pumpy roof move at the finish....[more]   Browse More Classics in TN

Photos of Leda Slideshow Add Photo
Warm hands on a chilly January morning.  Nice fire by Chattanooga college kids.
Warm hands on a chilly January morning. Nice fire...
Comments on Leda Add Comment
Show which comments
By TKHouse
May 12, 2010

Since Dr. Topo went down, I was wondering if anyone had the .pdf guidebook mentioned in the area description. I did some searching and couldn't find it elsewhere online. I've got the DCA, but it would be nice to see some updated info on lower Leda.

Thanks!

By lid
Jun 7, 2010

Topo PDF

By TKHouse
Jul 29, 2013

I haven't confirmed this personally, but per a post on the SCC website, parking at the main Leeda cliff (in the road pulloffs) is now reserved for emergency vehicles.

seclimbers.org/modules/Forums_phpbb3/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=130>>>

Not sure if parking lower down the road is permitted or not. Be careful heading up or down the road, people fly through there!

By Swamp Cookie
From: da Bayou
Jul 31, 2013

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By Khowe765
From: Knoxville, TN
Aug 3, 2013

Yes, to confirm, all pulloffs are for "Emergency Parking Only." There is a small paved pulloff up the road directly across from the first entrance to the Montlake neighborhood, we saw a few climbers park there.

By Bobby Hutton
From: indiana
Dec 4, 2013

The SCC recently added a trail from the upper parking around the hair pin corner down to the right side of LEDA next to University route. For more info.
www.seclimbers.org/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=61>>>
www.seclimbers.org/modules.php?name=Content&pa=showpage&pid=>>>