Type: Trad, 200 ft, 2 pitches
FA: Jim McEver, David Broemel - 1973
Page Views: 13,262 total · 92/month
Shared By: saxfiend on Mar 31, 2007
Admins: Aaron Parlier, Steve Lineberry

You & This Route

144 Opinions

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One of three routes starting from the Sentry Box Ledge, Gemini Crack is an excellent line with a thought-provoking but well-protected crux. Though officially it's a two-pitch climb, there's no good reason not to do it in one long pitch. Don't miss this classic if you're climbing the South Side.

P1 - Starting on the Sentry Ledge, climb a right-facing corner until you're just below a pair of left-angling vertical cracks on steeper ground. Move right to the cracks and follow them up and left (crux). When these cracks peter out, continue a short distance on easier terrain to a good horizontal gear belay (or to combine pitches, continue up to the anchors). 5.8, 100'
P2 - Continue up through eyebrows and some runout easier ground to the new ring anchors below the old Gemini rap tree. 5.6, 80'


Starts on the Sentry Box Ledge just left of Zodiac. An alleged 3rd class scramble (more of a 5.easy free solo) will get you to the ledge. Double-rope rap from new ring bolts just below the old belay tree gets you back to the Sentry Ledge, then a single-rope rap to the ground.


Medium gear; cams, tricams and nuts.


Decatur, GA
saxfiend   Decatur, GA  
Leading Gemini was the high point of my latest trip to Looking Glass. The twin cracks section is strenuous, but there's great pro and good stances to place gear when you need them. Combining pitches makes for a nice long climb and using double ropes makes things easier. Apr 1, 2007
Rob Rives  
Really great route, good pro, and easily linked into a single pitch. I felt this was a hair easier than First Return. Aug 6, 2010
Ryan Williams
London (sort of)
Ryan Williams   London (sort of)
I think this is the easiest of the 5.8 ledge routes. Do in one pitch. Oct 27, 2011
Definitely gonna want two ropes to get down from this...thought we had a 70m, turns out it was 60...still not sure if 70 would get you down or not (I don't think so). But, on the bright side you can always downclimb the first 30m! (like we did, actually wasn't too hard and didn't take all that agonizingly long) Mar 13, 2013
Charlotte, NC
b.t.miller   Charlotte, NC
If you're on Sentry and haven't done this route, then by all means send this. A very nice climb that is thought provoking but never precarious.

P1 and P2 really can be easily linked. In fact, if you're careful with your slings (using long slings in the right places), the rope drag is very reasonable. I believe we had about 180-185' of rope out when we reached the Gemini rap anchors at top.

P1 (and P2 linked) - After about 30-40' the initial right corner crack will fizzle out and you'll traverse climber's right to the bottom of the Gemini Crack system -- this traverse is a very cool move with slopey holds and delicate matching feet - classic Looking Glass! Once you make the short traverse, you can protect the start of Gemini. 0.4 BD slots into a climber's right horizontal beautifully. We also threw in a 0.5 BD in the right-most Gemini Crack, then put these two pieces on a sliding X and sent away! Make a couple of very fun moves in the cracks and you'll be rewarded with a solid 1.0 BD cam placement right before you pull out of the crack system. The last couple of Gemini crack moves are really cool--- there is an obvious pinch at the top of the two cracks. Use this pinch in combination with a high left foot. Pull the pincher hard and roll up on high left foot.

Once you leave the Gemini cracks, you'll see an obvious horizontal to climber's left that would eat gear for a belay (and maybe even eat you!). We just kept going to link the pitches. NOTE: gear is fairly sparse above Gemini cracks. Maybe 3-4 placements over a 90' stretch. Thankfully the climbing gods were generous with a very moderate pitch thru the runout.

GEAR: the P1 right facing corner gobbled up our Red Tricam and refused to give it back. If you're able to get it free, then enjoy the nearly new piece. Placed on 05/03/2014. May 5, 2014
Jed N
Raleigh, NC
Jed N   Raleigh, NC
Followed flake/crack up too far where it blanks out and becomes harder then 5.8. I had to down climb to start of twin cracks. If you look at route from ground prior, shouldn't be an issue. Aug 7, 2014
Russ Keane
Asheville, NC
Russ Keane   Asheville, NC
Classic route for sure. It had some true crack climbing features, and as mentioned the protection is really good. Not that tough for 5.8. The second half offers a cool link-up, if no one is on First Return. Head left to that second pitch and finish up the prominent water groove, accessed via this slabby/stem-fest up a cool dihedral feature.

Do this in one long, beautiful pitch about 180 feet, with such wonderful varied movements. "I recommend!" Oct 2, 2016