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South Side
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Rat's Ass 

YDS: 5.8+ French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c

Type:  Trad, 3 pitches, 300'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.8+ French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: Stan Wallace, John Ferguson, Jim McEver, Ron Cousins - 1973
Page Views: 8,246
Submitted By: saxfiend on Mar 31, 2007

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (104)
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Pat Price coming up Rat's Ass. Circa '97.


A challenging climb with a thin crack in a stemming corner. Linking P2 and P3 is the way to go as long as you have a 60-meter rope.

P1 - Starting on low-angle slab, scramble up to a crack and continue through a right-facing corner with a fingertip-sized crack. Belay at a rounded ledge with good gear in the widening crack. 5.8, 120'
P2 - Continue up the crack on easier ground, moving up and right until the corner ends and find a good spot to belay (or continue up and right to the anchors). 5.5, 170'
P3 - Climb up and right on good friction using cracks and eyebrows for pro until you get to the new upper rap anchors for Gemini Crack. 5.5, 60'


Starts just left of Second Coming. Rap from upper Gemini ring anchors to the Sentry Box Ledge, then a second rap to the ground.


Small to medium nuts and cams. No fixed gear.

Photos of Rat's Ass Slideshow Add Photo
P1 of Rats Ass, 5.8
P1 of Rats Ass, 5.8
At the belay getting ready to start pitch 2
At the belay getting ready to start pitch 2
2nd Pitch of Rats Ass
2nd Pitch of Rats Ass
About half way up pitch 2 of rat's ass
About half way up pitch 2 of rat's ass
P1 of Rats Ass, 5.8
P1 of Rats Ass, 5.8

Comments on Rat's Ass Add Comment
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By Danny Inman
From: Arvada
Apr 1, 2007

This route is a classic, tips and stemming with rests when you need em.
By saxfiend
From: Decatur, GA
Apr 1, 2007

Great route and a heady P1 lead by Danny, very thin fingertips in places. P2 is easier climbing but still a lot of fun on lead. A must do!
By Floridaputz
From: Oakland Park, Florida
May 2, 2007

This is one of the best 5.8's on the South Face. The first pitch is a right leaning inside corner. It appears blank from the deck. However, as said, the finger locks are sweet 120ft (5.8+). I like to climb up 30 feet and set up the belay at the bottom of the crack. Both this climb and 2nd coming have a low angle slab that pushes the belay out from the face. This creates a outward pull that can lead to a zipper of your gear. make sure you use a directional on these climbs. The 2nd pitch is long 180 Ft (5.5).
By Devin Armour
From: Asheville, NC
May 14, 2008
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Good route on a busy wall. Hit it after a rainy night but it was dry by 10. Pulling over the bulge on the second pitch was a high point.
By AWBivins
From: Savannah, GA
Oct 13, 2010

I felt like gear placements were the crux on this route. After watching my last nut placement pop out I was pretty much free soloing. Make sure you bring plenty of small gear.
By Jeff Mekolites
From: HOTlanta, GA
Jan 3, 2012
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Best done in 2 pitches. First to the obvious belay ledge. Second to the rap rings.
By Richard Vazquez
May 30, 2012
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

This is a fun route but on the second pitch be carefull because theres a lot of loose rocks.
By Jeff Gregory
From: Columbia, South Carolina
Nov 18, 2012
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

There's an old (chopped?) bolt site on the right face as you end the 5.8 section (120ft) and move into easier ground. Just FYI. It helped me solidify the "so-I-guess-I'm-setting-anchor-here" decision after running a bit slim on gear...having no experience on the route before.

This route was such a fantastic experience for me with the thin fingers.
By Tyler Phillips
Mar 23, 2014

I agree with Jeff, this can be done in 2 pitches. Head over to the new rings above Gemini. A fun climb with a great crack. Slabby- trust those feet!
By Jonathan Dull
From: Boone, NC
Apr 1, 2014

First pitch finger crack is classic! Linking the second and third pitch is the way to go. Two 60m ropes needed to reach Sentry Box Ledge.
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