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Routes in Chopping Block

A Sioux Named Boy S 5.13c 8a+ 30 X- 31 E7 7a
Baba Cool S 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
Chopping Block T 5.3 3+ 10 III 9 VD 3a X
Glimpse Into Paradise V7 7A+
Great Chimney AKA The Great Dihedral, The T 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Meat is Murder S 5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
Tender Vittles S 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
Twelve White Sticks S 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
Valdez Overhang S,TR 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
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Type: Sport, 60 ft
FA: Ian Preszler, Dave Brumbaugh, Ron Yahne-1989
Page Views: 7,452 total · 36/month
Shared By: Chad Berger on Sep 19, 2001
Admins: Andrew Gram, Peter Gram, Greg Parker, Mike Madsen, Mark Rafferty

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Located on the Chopping Block. Hike up from the small parking area just as your leaving the Rushmore memorial. Follow obvious trail. Wrinkled Rock is on your right and the Chopping block is on your left. as the trail curves around the Chopping Block, scramble up to base of the routes. Baba Cool is the left most route on the face.Paul Piana describes it as " A perfect Route. All time classic. Climb this one! " He is right. I'd say it is a very solid 10A.


6 Bolts then a 2 bolt anchor. You will probably want to rap off to save your rope.
It's not 10a. Aug 19, 2002
In my opinion Bab Cool is 10a. Even though Vern Phinney in his guide book has it rated as 9+. But then most of the 9+'s in Vern's book are 10a. The 10+'s are also 11a Aug 19, 2002
Baba cool, way cool! I must climb. Cool side pulls with nice crystals. Dec 22, 2002
I agree with that it is 10a although it was pretty hot when I did it so that may have had a little to do with it. Mar 10, 2003
Chad Berger
Westby, WI
Chad Berger   Westby, WI
I've climbed 10A's all over the country and I think that its on par with alot of other 10's that I've climbed. I also think that Wisconsin Beef is also really, really close to 10A. I think its listed as 9+ in the guidebooks. Mar 20, 2003
It's 10a, onsight, if you climb it a few times it may not feel like 10a anymore ... Dec 18, 2003
Wow, Baba Cool is a great outing. Must do for an intro Mt. Rushmore lead. Word Up!!! Oct 4, 2004
At one point in time The Black Hills was a place where 5.9 was not a forgotten grade. There are a bunch of 5.9's on pine tree rock that are hard for the grade. Wasp is another hard 5.9. Now the black hills is turning into the land of bolted cracks. If you want to climb bolted cracks move to France, chizelmonkey. Oct 4, 2004
Beware as all of the bolts on this route are loose and can't be tightened. Why hasn't the Coalition fixed this one? This does not make sense to me as there are very new Fixe Open Shuts and bolts for the anchors. Nov 29, 2005
The bolts are not loose on Baba Cool. The hangers are loose on the bolts which allows them to spin; the bolts themselves are quite solid. I do intend to fix this situation and of course would accept the help of any anon. cowards on this project who would like to do something besides complain. Dec 3, 2005
Yo Ron, I'll help. Never bolted before, so it's new to me. Always willing to learn a new skill, fact is I just learned the "Texas Sling". Gimme a call 3819800. It warms up, we fix Baba. -E Dec 8, 2005
Chris treggE
Madison, Beersconsin
Chris treggE   Madison, Beersconsin  
Superb route. Jay and I (mostly me I think, right Jay?) wanted to climb this on the last day of our trip to the Hills this summer. After being out there maybe 4-5 times in the last several years and each time wanting to climb this but not getting to do it, the climb had obtained a mythical quality for me. Well the sky was threatening and it was starting to thunder and sprinkle but hell with it! Gotta climb it. The rain was coming in from the other side of the Block and the route mostly stayed dry, and was quite a cap to a great trip. "Climb this one!" indeed. Oct 15, 2008
best route for it's grade in the hills. if not the best route in the hills. Jun 7, 2009
Jay Knower
Campton, NH
Jay Knower   Campton, NH  
I climbed this route on my first climbing trip over ten years ago. I remember thinking then that it was one of the best routes I had ever done. I got back on it yesterday and I had that feeling reaffirmed. Baba Cool is one of those all time classic routes. Yesterday it made me realize that if this is what climbing can be, then I always want to be a climber. Jul 23, 2009
Corey Morris
Landstuhl, Germany
Corey Morris   Landstuhl, Germany
The very best sport climb I've been on for it's grade... Dec 31, 2011
Doug Lintz
Kearney, NE
Doug Lintz   Kearney, NE
Don't pass this one up. Superb climbing and position. Aug 20, 2013
Fort Collins
Gregory   Fort Collins
Would be a classic in any area, simply amazing! Sep 23, 2013
Chad Koch
Mission Hill,SD
Chad Koch   Mission Hill,SD
As has been stated by many others here, this climb is fantastic! Everything you could ask from a route...steep, balancy, great moves, just an ultra classic route.

I am on the fence about the 10a consensus, though. I'm not sure if it was the fact that we had just come back from two days on Devils Tower or not, but it felt like 5.9+ to me, even onsight. On the other hand, I don't have much experience on .10's in the area, so my opinion may change as time goes on. Sep 24, 2014
Wilson On The Drums
Woodbury, MN
Wilson On The Drums   Woodbury, MN
way to go on the onsight chad! Sep 25, 2014
Chad Koch
Mission Hill,SD
Chad Koch   Mission Hill,SD
Thanks Willie! Sep 26, 2014
Andy Eiter
Madison, WI
  5.10a PG13
Andy Eiter   Madison, WI
  5.10a PG13
Beware, if you're pushing your grade; the first bolt is an intimidating 20' up. May 29, 2018
All the hardware has been replaced as of 10/19/18 by the BHCC. Oct 23, 2018

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