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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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Type: Trad, 350 ft, 3 pitches, Grade II
FA: Bob Gillespie, Bob Mitchell, Steve Longenecker, 1971
Page Views: 26,398 total · 184/month
Shared By: Jethro Bodine-Clampett on Jan 6, 2007
Admins: Aaron Parlier, Steve Lineberry

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Access Issue: Seasonal Raptor Closure Details

Description

Start: On the left side of the Amphitheatre near the bottom, not far from where the wall turns outward to face the gorge.
Pitch 1: Begin with low-angle climbing, then move into a slightly overhanging crack system with good holds to a two-person sized belay (5.6+).
Pitch 2: Begin by veering slightly left on the slab with a nice low-angle crack system (5.3). Finish on a huge ledge. Belay near the right end of the ledge (see topo photo).
Pitch 3: Move out right from the belay and then straight up an easy, mossy, yet exposed slab to the top (5.3).
Variation: Move out left from the belay at some thin cracks and climb through a short chimney to join up with the last part of the mossy slab (5.5).

Location

Hike/Slide down the center of the Amphitheatre gully. See route description "Start" above.

Protection

Full standard rack, it is helpful to have extra mid-sized cams or hexes for the first pitch.
Note: As with many Linville routes, nuts, hexes and tricams work very well here.
I thought this route got a 5.5 in the guidebooks I have! Grade aside, a wonderful route on a spring day. Climbed this route solo on a spring day with a brand new pair of shoes, worn out jeans, and the sun on my back to keep me company. My best day of climbing in my life was an afternoon solo linkup of the Daddy, the Mummy (onsight solo), and the Prow (onsight solo). The exposure was vast, the people I met along the way friendly, and the climbing movement natural, pure, and unmarred by unnecessary "convenience" modern hardware. Consider yourself lucky if you are close enough to experience the beauty of this place; it is unique and beautiful. For roped climbers, a set of hexes would most likely be more effective than cams; the cracks are highly featured inside and irregular. Jul 17, 2007
saxfiend
Decatur, GA
saxfiend   Decatur, GA  
I don't know how the Kelley book lists this one, so maybe that's where the 5.6 came from; the Lambert/Shull guide does rate it at 5.5. I haven't climbed it, so can't speak from experience.

Regarding the gear, I found plenty of good cam placements (as well as tricams) on the Daddy just next door. Jul 17, 2007
Josh Gray
Loveland, CO
 
Josh Gray   Loveland, CO
 
I found that the cracks on the first pitch were almost too featured (lots of jagged quartzite crystals) I didn't have any smaller sized hexes so I used cams,tricams, and nuts equally, if you use a 60 meter rope you can do this in two long pitches, just belay on the small ledge in the middle of the "2nd" pitch Dec 18, 2008
Ben Sachs
5.5
Ben Sachs  
5.5
This climb is easy and very safe...not PG13 or "5.6+" as the description implies Jun 18, 2009
Matt Coffey
Raleigh, NC
  5.5
Matt Coffey   Raleigh, NC
  5.5
Great climb. The pink and red tricams are bomber all over this route. Jun 23, 2009
Christopher Snipes  
  5.5
The worst part of climbing the amphitheater is the Amp Gully trail!!

The Mummy is a great climb and is an enjoyable 5.5 If you have a 60m rope, you should bypass the first belay and move on to the second. It's a bigger ledge and offers some fantastic mid climb views of the gorge and The Prow. From there, you can finish the route. I would definitely recommend the pitch 3 variation and skip the 5.3 lichen covered route.

Climbed it over 4th of July 2010. Very few crowds, nice weather, and good climbing.

The hike back to the bag stash along the Rim Trail is also very nice albeit very close to the edge in some spots!!! Jul 5, 2010
This route has amazing placement for any type of gear you choose to bring along. The climbing is fun and easy. The whole route can be quite easily done in two pitches rather than 3 as long as you manage your rope drag on the linked 2-3 pitch. Oct 20, 2010
Mike Holley
Boone, NC
 
Mike Holley   Boone, NC
 
Great quality climbing! The most exposure of all three classics down there! First two pitches are fantastic crack/face climbing with tons of pro and the upper pitch is unreal (especially if you can time it just right to catch the sunset). Another great moderate down in the Gorge! Mar 13, 2012
todd w  
April/2012: There's a rappel station (thick cord, quick links & rap ring) attached to a block inside the dark, narrow gully directly behind the mummy that you can see in the photos. You can get to it by walking the obscure trail along the amphitheater rim--start at the flat rock. The trail could use some clippers. Apr 12, 2012
Robert Hutchins  
  5.5
"PG13", really? For a climb of this nature, I'm not sure how much better gear you could wish for. Great climb, would be 4 stars if not for the relatively uninteresting final pitch. If pitches 1 and 2 are combined this makes one of the best moderate single pitches in the gorge. Dec 3, 2013
Jethro Bodine-Clampett
Hixson, Tn
  5.5
Jethro Bodine-Clampett   Hixson, Tn
  5.5
Robert H., PG13 is the "top" rating you can assign to protection on here. Feb 11, 2014
Edward Medina
Ridgway, CO
Edward Medina   Ridgway, CO  
Jeff,
Actually leaving the safety field blank is interpreted as the 'safest' rating. Feb 13, 2014
kyle howe
Knoxville, TN
 
kyle howe   Knoxville, TN
 
Classic climb. Loved the exposure. Cracks on around the 2nd pitch are pretty shallow, tricams work well here. Ran it out about 30 or 40 feet - sometimes it's just better to climb on. If you link pitch 2 and 3, be mindful of rope drag. I was not, and topping out was really difficult due to all of the drag I managed to accumulate. Apr 24, 2014
Always a fun outing - did it this past Saturday - hard to tell what a "5.5" is" - I think that 5.6 might be more fair for your average Joe - the holds are super big but it is indeed steep - there is literally gear "everywhere" so PG-13 is really not apt - all climbers should be careful. It can be done in 2 pitches but making it into 3 pitches is more adventuresome. Have fun! Apr 28, 2015
Curtis Baird
  5.7
Curtis Baird  
  5.7
First time on the Mummy, CLASSIC!!!!! Not PG-13 at all. Good gear all over the route. I am still trying to figure out how this climb is 5.5. It felt every bit of 5.7 and was definitely harder than the Daddy. Regardless, it is long, steep, and exposed making it a great route!!!!!! Definitely doable in 2 pitches if you have a 60m rope. May 12, 2015
Titus
 
Titus  
 
We did this in two pitches and set up the first belay about 30-40ft below and right of the normal second belay ledge (small ledge, one small pine). The rope drag was not terrible from there, and that ledge gives an AMAZING view and feeling of exposure. Amazing route, absolutely loved it! Rap webbing and rings are in acceptable condition at the time of this writing. Sep 25, 2016
Josh Levell
Denver, CO
  5.5
Josh Levell   Denver, CO
  5.5
Not sure why this is rated a PG-13. More placements than you need on this route Jan 23, 2017
Benandstuff
Winston-Salem, NC
Benandstuff   Winston-Salem, NC
To answer JCLevell and any future confused climbers, it is a PG-13 because the original poster did not realize that leaving the safety rating blank means it has adequate protection. See comments above.

EDIT: Now fixed. Thanks Jethro! Jan 30, 2017
Jethro Bodine-Clampett
Hixson, Tn
  5.5
Jethro Bodine-Clampett   Hixson, Tn
  5.5
Fixed the protection rating. Be confused no more. Jan 31, 2017
Michael Whalen  
  5.6
Did this climb about a week ago as a 3 person team on twin ropes. We accidentally combined the first and second pitch which nearly maxed out our 60m but it worked just fine. We weren't sure if there was a way to walk off so we planned to rap down, however at the top there is a nice path that heads back up towards the top of the ridge and comes out the same location with the white square stone.

The approach was long and in the massive draw it was dense vegetation and scrambling. Worth it once you get there though. Awesome climb. Jul 3, 2017
Kennedy Carey
  5.6
Kennedy Carey  
  5.6
Set an all time record for longest approach - took us just under 4 hours to find the route. If you are 100% sure where it is it would probably take 45 minutes from the parking lot. Otherwise the route was great and had some of the best views I've ever had climbing. Did it in 2 pitches. Belayed at the ledge under the death flake. May 2, 2018
Michael Atlas
charlotte, nc
 
Michael Atlas   charlotte, nc
 
As of 9/29/2019, the rap station was in good shape (2 cords / slings in excellent condition and 1 which is partially worn through) and it appeared that somebody generously donated another sling in the past weeks / months. We linked the mummy into 2 pitches with a 70m and shoulder length and above slings, which made the rope drag not too bad. My partner stopped at the tree ledge which I think is 75% or so up the actual 2nd pitch and then I took it up to the top.

  • FYI - We accidently dropped a cheap walkie talkie about 3/4 the way up the route and watched as it shattered into 10+ pieces. If you find any batteries or pieces of black plastic, can you please dispose of them properly? We did a scan of the area around the mummy and managed to grab 3 or so.
Oct 1, 2018

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