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Routes in Amphitheater

Cryptic Trip T 5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
Daddy, The T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Good Heavens T 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a
Holy Moses T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Land of the little people T 5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c R
Mummy, The T 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a
Open Book, The T 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
Out of sight out of mind T 5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
Prow, The T 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c
S. D. Modiano T 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Turkey Beard T 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
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Elevation: 2,727 ft
GPS: 35.871, -81.893 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 89,192 total · 606/month
Shared By: saxfiend on Oct 14, 2006
Admins: Aaron Parlier, Steve Lineberry
Getting weather forecast...
Access Issue: Seasonal Raptor Closure Details


The word "spectacular" could have been coined just so you could describe the Amphitheater. Combine long, moderate multi-pitch climbing, high-quality rock, fantastic exposure and take-your-breath-away views, and you've got some of the best climbing North Carolina has to offer. The Mummy and The Daddy are two of the highlights of the Amphitheater; both are must-do routes even if your lead level is much higher.

Getting to the base is a long, hard slog down a steep descent gully, so most climbers rack up before starting down. Stow your pack and other non-essential stuff at the big flat rock near where the gully starts (ask someone who's been there), then retrieve it on the walk-off from the top of the climb.

Getting There

From the Table Rock parking lot, head south through the campground and along the ridgeline trail. Continue past the Chimneys and past the first cut-off trail to the right (this leads to North Carolina Wall). Watch for a white quartz rock on the trailside and take the cut-off trail to the right. Continue down this trail as it steepens and look for a split-off to the left near a large flat rock. This turns into the descent gully; downclimb this steep gully to the base of the Amphitheater. The Mummy Buttress is to your left, the Prow and Open Book to the right.

11 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Amphitheater

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c
The Prow
Trad 4 pitches
5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a
The Mummy
Trad 3 pitches
5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a
Good Heavens
Trad 5 pitches
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
The Daddy
Trad 5 pitches
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
The Open Book
Trad 2 pitches
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
Cryptic Trip
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
Turkey Beard
Trad 2 pitches
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
The Prow
5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c Trad 4 pitches
The Mummy
5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a Trad 3 pitches
Good Heavens
5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a Trad 5 pitches
The Daddy
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b Trad 5 pitches
The Open Book
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Trad 2 pitches
Cryptic Trip
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Trad
Turkey Beard
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Trad 2 pitches
More Classic Climbs in Amphitheater »

Sun & Shade

Weather Averages

Days w Precip
Prime Climbing Season
Cameron Sumpter
Lander, WY
Cameron Sumpter   Lander, WY
as on 3/14/12 the rap station was in fine shape. looks like its been beefed up with two more individual lines of static line. 1 mallion and 1 aluminum rap ring are on the station. Mar 17, 2012
Just made my first trip to the Amphitheater last week (April 2012) and the hike in is long but the guide book (Select Climbs in NC) nails the approach. Getting out from the Mummy Buttress is another story. Hike your way back to the east and toward the waterfall (not a heavy waterfall). Take the trail that leads to the HIGH GROUND!!! There is a trail that goes under the falls and it is treacherous. You also have to do some minor climbing to get out, unless we were just really lost. 1 hour and 15 minutes to get in... about 1 hour and 45 mins to get out. Rock was shaded until about 2PM. Apr 16, 2012
So we hiked to the Amphitheater to climb "The Prow." not easy to find actually quite disappointed at the guide book. If you come to a point where the trail opens up at a rocky some what flat point, with very large boulders, and the trail turns right, you've gone too far. Oct 2, 2012
Re approach: if you rap the gulley between the mummy buttress and the main wall as mentioned in the North Carolina Selected Climbs book, I don't recommend using the rap station built on the SMALL rock at the edge of the drop off. There is a reliable tree a few feet above the rock and this is much safer. Should be possible with a 60m rope. Also watch for the rope getting stuck as you pull.

The Daddy was awesome. Highly recommend.
Oct 23, 2015
Winston-Salem, NC
Benandstuff   Winston-Salem, NC
So, it took me two attempts to get the approach to the mummy buttress gully correct. I followed the instructions in the turns out the Reggae wall is not in fact the back wall of the amphitheater with the waterfall near the top. It is a smaller wall you cannot see until you are down below it. If you come to an overlook with a "gully" on your right with a 10 foot wall near the top of the descent...keep going. There is a steep gully even further back that will take you around and back towards the "slot canyon" gully at the mummy buttress proper. Nov 21, 2015
Russ Keane
Asheville, NC
Russ Keane   Asheville, NC
This is a confusing place. But it's fun. Getting to and from the climb is half the battle (maybe more). Totally beautiful. I mean spectacular. The rock quality is superb. Good easy moderate routes. Jun 11, 2016
Allan Ange
Sylva, NC
Allan Ange   Sylva, NC
The white rock marking the descent trail into the amphitheater seems to be absent. Jun 3, 2018
Shelby, NC
stolo   Shelby, NC
Someone found the rock and placed it back by the trail. Jun 21, 2018
Michael Atlas
charlotte, nc
Michael Atlas   charlotte, nc
As of 9/28, the white quartzite trail marker for the amphitheater was there and the rap gully was in excellent shape. We did the linville triple in a little over 13 hours car to car by doing the mummy, then the daddy, and then the prow and by utilizing the rap gully. With a 70m, we linked the extended prow (started low) into 3 pitches, the mummy into 2, and the daddy into 3. I'm not 100% sure that linking pitches saves much time if you and your partner are already very efficient at swapping leads / gear as the extra thoughts required to minimize rope drag slows you down from time to time.

We had doubles of everything, but even with linking pitches, we found that we had more than enough gear by the time we finished each climb. You likely don't need more than singles for these climbs as although the pro you get it very good, it can be limited from time to time.

My recommendation is to not underestimate the time it takes to hike in and out. I didn't time it, but I would guesstimate that even if you have all of your gear sorted and knowing who is going to lead the first pitch, by the time you hike in, drop a bag off at the flat rock, hike to the rappel, rappel, and then go to one of the climbs, you are looking at 1.5-2 hours before you are tied in and ready to climb. The hike out from the prow (with exhausted legs and some minor gear sorting at the flat rock) took probably 45 mins-1 hour. Oct 1, 2018
The coordinates of the white rock are 35.873N, 081.888W, slightly under 1.25 miles from the Table Rock parking lot. Oct 28, 2018

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