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Routes in Snake's Den

5.9X TR 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Bookends T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Dark in Bad T,TR 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13
Freddie's Dead T 5.2 3 8 II 8 D 2c PG13
Mist T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Scrambled Brains T,TR 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Sunny Daye T 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a PG13
Unknown 5.3 T 5.3 3+ 10 III 9 VD 3a PG13
Unknown 5.9 T,TR 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Wasp Flake T 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c PG13
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Elevation: 3,666 ft
GPS: 35.758, -82.359 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 8,869 total · 109/month
Shared By: ARowland Rowland on Nov 17, 2011
Admins: Aaron Parlier, Steve Lineberry
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This area is small, has mediocre quality rock, and is generally only worth mentioning because it's so close to Asheville. The cliff has a south-facing aspect but the base of the climb is well shaded. Climbs are mostly in the 5.4-5.9 range. It is possible to walk off the top, but it's not a short walk and there's no trail to speak of, so rappelling from trees at the top may be a better option. The highest parts of the cliff will require 2 ropes for a rappel

Gear is typical for NC.

There are rarely many climbers there, but on a nice day there may be plenty of hikers parking in the same area.

Getting There

To get there, take I-26 exit 15 and turn eastbound towards Barnardsville on NC 197/Barnardsville Hwy. After 6 miles, turn right onto Dillingham Rd. After 2.2 miles, keep left at the fork to stay on Dillingham Rd. After 3 miles the road turns to dirt, and a further 4 miles puts you at the base of the rock.

There is a gate shortly after the road changes to dirt that is sometimes closed in the winter. You can try calling the Forest Service District Office at (828) 682-6146 to make sure you can get in before you make the trip.

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Classic Climbing Routes at Snake's Den

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c PG13
Wasp Flake
Trad 2 pitches
5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a PG13
Sunny Daye
Trad 2 pitches
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Wasp Flake
5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c PG13 Trad 2 pitches
Sunny Daye
5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a PG13 Trad 2 pitches
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b Trad
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a TR
More Classic Climbs in Snake's Den »

Weather Averages

Days w Precip
Prime Climbing Season


Two good rap bolts are in place above Book Ends. Mar 13, 2012
Kelley's second edition has a topo with route names , grades and locations. This is not an easy place for beginners to climb as there are no bolted anchors to work with except at the route mentioned. It would be a good location if a few anchors were in place. Approach consists of parking far enough away from the rock to get your car door open. Jan 13, 2014
Erik Henley
Erik Henley   Kingsport
This area is decent to take new climbers to teach the basics of top roping. There are bolts on one route but the last move to get to them is a little difficult.

Most of the area is fairly easy climbing and the rock provides decent grip. Watch out for snakes and bats. Make sure you look before you place.

I would take anyone new to climbing here due to the ease of access to the area and the progressive difficulty in climbs. Sep 5, 2014
New anchor to the right of the Bookends anchor. It works for the climb called Redneck. 5.8. As well as the 5.10 to the left of Redneck. May 20, 2015
This is an excellent place for a day where you don't want to hike. There are easy gear belay places on the left half of the cliff, so no need for bolting. This is a great place to teach trad lead on some of the easier climbs and to introduce people to climbing in general.

Wear a helmet, especially if there are other groups, since the walk-off trail runs along the edge of the cliff and there are a lot of loose rocks up there. Apr 1, 2016
Scrambled Brains was recently retro bolted. If you respect the past present and future of NC climbing, you will not retro bolt routes. It's simple respect. May 28, 2016

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