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Palisades State Park

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A Taste Of Fontainebleau 
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Palisades State Park 

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Location: 43.6901, -96.5147 View Map  Incorrect?
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Administrators: Andrew Gram, Peter Gram, Greg Parker, Andy Busse, Mike Housiaux, Kristine Hoffman
Submitted By: Jon Cannon on Oct 16, 2006
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BETA PHOTO: Overview


The Split Rock Creek splits a band of Sioux Quartz just outside the town of Garretson, South Dakota, making for lots of climbing right off the water. Loads of picnickers will be strolling through the area during the summer.

The rock is not very good for friction but gets a wonderful pump due to the crimps and slopers. This place is good for experienced trad climbers as well as TRing. There are never ending crack systems through out the park. Great face climbs are Slandeross (5.12) , Debuant Farmers (5.12), King Olof (5.10) , Glimmer (5.10+) , Never Say Never (5.10) ,and Henry Aaron (5.7). The area saw bouldering development in 2009 and still holds potential for new problems. Great Boulder problems to check out are Contrivance (V5) , Necessary Contrivance (V4) , I Seam Stumped (V3) , Lithium CT (V2), and Head Hunters (V2).

Getting There 

10 miles north of Interstate 90, off the Brandon exit (Exit 406). 25495 485th Avenue, Garretson, SD 57030-6117

189 Total Routes

['4 Stars',3],['3 Stars',60],['2 Stars',59],['1 Star',32],['Bomb',2]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Palisades State Park:
Regular Route   V2 5+     Boulder   River Boulder
Grenada   V2 5+     Boulder   Bridge Boulder
Puppy Love   V3 6A     Boulder, 12'   Bridge Boulder
Hung Like A Horse   V3 6A     Boulder, 15'   A Taste Of Fontainebleau
Necessary Contrivance   V4 6B     Boulder   Bridge Boulder
I Seam Stumped   V4 6B     Boulder   Bridge Boulder
Contrivance   V5 6C     Boulder, 10'   Bridge Boulder
Garden Path   5.5 4b 13 IV+ MS 4a     Trad, TR, 50'   South Wall
Henry Aaron   5.7 5a 15 V+ MVS 4b PG13     TR, 65'   Chockstone Tower
Passive Pro-gression   5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 40'   Split creek cracks
Stepping Out   5.8 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c     Trad, TR   RattleSnake
The Bitch   5.8+ 5b 16 VI- HVS 4c     Trad, TR, 65'   Chockstone Tower
The Son Of A Bitch   5.9+ 5c 17 VI E1 5a     Trad, TR, 65'   Chockstone Tower
Cemetery Gates   5.10 6b 20 VII- E2 5b     Trad, TR   Harkor Tower
King Olaf   5.10 6b 20 VII- E2 5b     TR   King Rock
Glimmer   5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ E3 5b     TR   Harkor Tower
Debutant Farmers   5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ E5 6a     Trad, TR   Positron
Aloha   5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ E6 6b     TR, 65'   Chockstone Tower
Browse More Classics in Palisades State Park

Featured Route For Palisades State Park
Workin it

I Seam Stumped V4 6B  SD : Palisades State Park : Bridge Boulder
I seam stumped is the obvious line on the Bridge boulder with the the old stump right below the crack or seam. The Crux is the last few moves. Start by smearing with your right foot and left foot. ( DO NOT USE LEDGE TO THE RIGHT.) Grab the cling with your left hand and the right with the lower crack. Begin to work your way up the seam. Top out is good once you find balance again. ONE OF THE BEST BOULDER PROBLEMS IN PALISADES....[more]   Browse More Classics in SD

Comments on Palisades State Park Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Sep 21, 2013
By Palisades Guide Book
6 days ago

NEW PALISADES GUIDEBOOK available at the Great Outdoor Store in Sioux Falls starting April 21st, 2014. 100 pages, 260 routes, Color Route Photos, Area Descriptions,and more!

By MattZ
May 13, 2007

Palisades State Park is indeed worth visiting. The camping is great and there are many levels of routes available.

By Conor Raney
From: Pinedale, WY
Nov 12, 2010

Happy to see people start to explore this area more for bouldering. Want to get back and try some of the new stuff. Someone needs to put up a hard problem to attract a little more interest haha...I know it's hard but shoot, it'd be nice to have a hard problem in the vicinity.

By Amy Weed
Feb 8, 2011

Are there any sport routes in this area?

By Tane Owens
From: Pahrump, NV
May 26, 2012

It seems like there have been a lot of climbing additions to the park in the past few years. Is there any chance someone with current knowledge of the area can make additions or updates to the beta/park overview photo? This would definitely help me around the park, and I'm sure others would benefit from it as well.

By trisgo
From: Omaha, NE (at the moment)
Sep 27, 2012

I don't know, I guess it comes down to personal preference. I'd take Palisades over Blue Mounds anyday. There isn't as much climbing, but hearing the running water and being in the serene (I'm horrible at spelling)setting rather then a field at Blue Mounds is well worth the trade off for me. I usually go up there for the weekend and do Palisades on Saturday and Blue Mounds on Sunday.

By Remus
Jun 30, 2013

Any body feel that some of the grades can be rather stiff for some. Not all routes but some. Mostly Tr anyhow. Just wondering

By cslice
From: Colorado Springs, CO
Aug 7, 2013

I am taking some friends with kids climbing in the area. I live in Colorado but am originally from Sioux Falls. Which wall would you recommend for setting up some group top ropes? I'm looking for something that has good towrope climbs from the 5-5 range to 9 or 10. Thanks :)

By Mike Housiaux
From: Rapid City
Aug 8, 2013

The easiest wall to set up some TR would be the South Wall. Fun routes from 5.5-5.9. Good trees on top to set up on. Bring lots of webbing and cord. Hope this helps and safe climbing! Enjoy.

By Sam Smolnisky
From: Sioux Falls, SD
Sep 5, 2013

Many of the routes were put up in the 80's or earlier, thus the stiff grades. In discovering new routes, we have tried to keep the grades consistent with other climbs in the area, instead of giving in to grade inflation. Plus the old hands enjoyed a good sandbag here and there.

By Mike Housiaux
From: Rapid City
Sep 21, 2013

Bouldering or Rope Climbing only? Good luck with the guide.