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Crowders Mountain

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Crowders Mountain Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Location: 35.2404, -81.2694 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 129,194
Administrators: Ryan Williams, Aaron Parlier, Steve Lineberry, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: EricD on Feb 1, 2008


86° | 66°

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You & This Area
Best climbs for YOU in this area
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Doug Reed on FA of Black Flag Direct 5.13?


Crowders Mountain is a state park located in western North Carolina. In fact, it's not too far from South Carolina. The rock is of a quartzite that is similar to the rock found around the state. Its easy approach and proximity to Charlotte make Crowders a popular place on the weekends, and not just for climbers (which leads some locals to call the place "Crowded" Mountain).

The rock quality is pretty good and offers something for everyone. There are numerous top-roping opportunities as well as sport and trad with ratings ranging from 5.5 to 5.13. Cliffs generally face east or west, so finding sun or shade is pretty easy (depending on the time of day), though the thick foliage can make finding sun more difficult.

Lambert and Shull's Selected Climbs in North Carolina is a great book for the area; however, it is not comprehensive. There is plenty to do here, however, since it's easy to top-rope quite a bit.

Keep in mind, this is a state park. Permits are required for climbing and rangers regularly visit the crags and check up on climbers. Permits are free and easy to fill out, so please do this to avoid hassles. Also, there is a gate that opens and closes daily. Please be aware of the time and make sure you leave before closing time.

Getting There 

Crowders Mountain is about 30 miles west of Charlotte.

Take I-85 to Exit 13 and make a left off the exit. After this, it depends on where you want to climb. Directions are different for the Hidden Wall and the rest of the areas. Please go to the respective areas to find directions to them.

Climbing Season

Weather station 5.4 miles from here

203 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',3],['3 Stars',66],['2 Stars',82],['1 Star',48],['Bomb',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Crowders Mountain

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Crowders Mountain:
Gastonia Crack   5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 80'   Main Climbing Areas : Practice Wall
Caterpillar   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 80'   Main Climbing Areas : David's Castle Wall
Finger Crack   5.8- 5b 16 VI- 14 VS 4c     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 50'   Main Climbing Areas : The Fortress
Pleasant Dreams   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 50'   Main Climbing Areas : Middle Finger (backside)
Ooga Chocka   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 70'   Main Climbing Areas : David's Castle (backside)
Holy Guacamole   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   Resurgence Walls : Trundlasaurus Wall
Overhung and Underrated   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, TR   Resurgence Walls : Trundlasaurus Wall
Opinionated   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 60'   Main Climbing Areas : Red Wall
Main Event   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 75'   Main Climbing Areas : Wrestling Wall
Dewey Used To Love It   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   Resurgence Walls : Trundlasaurus Wall
Plane Above Your Head   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   Resurgence Walls : Plane Above Your Head Wall
The Wall   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 60'   Main Climbing Areas : Practice Wall
Rawlhide   5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 40'   Resurgence Walls : Rawlhide Wall
Top That Direct   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   Hidden Wall
Master Beta   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   Main Climbing Areas : Red Wall
Burn Crack   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Trad, 1 pitch, 40'   Main Climbing Areas : Practice Wall
Electra   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 50'   Main Climbing Areas : David's Castle Wall
The Gimp   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 75'   Main Climbing Areas : Red Wall
Energy Czar   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   Main Climbing Areas : David's Castle Wall
Desperately Seeking Juggage   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, TR, 1 pitch, 30'   Main Climbing Areas : Red Wall
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Crowders Mountain

Featured Route For Crowders Mountain
Rock Climbing Photo: Cleaned up and fun. - butcher of baghdad

Butcher of Baghdad 5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a  North Carolina : Crowders Mountain : ... : David's Castle Wall
'The Butcher' rarely sees any repeats because of it's sustained, sharp crimp, face climbing style.Start on 'Energy Czar'. Trend up and right after the third bolt. Two options here.(5.12)- Staying right of the bolt line was the original intention of this reachy crimp option. (5.11+)- Staying slightly cliff left of the bolted line yields a technical, crimpy, but less reachy alternative to the (5.12) variation.Originally this route shared an anchor with INSTANT KARMA DIRECT(5.10d) but this anchor i...[more]   Browse More Classics in North Carolina

Photos of Crowders Mountain Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Picadilly Prow  5.11
Picadilly Prow 5.11
Rock Climbing Photo: FA of Rain Dogs 5.10 near King's Pinnacle back...
FA of Rain Dogs 5.10 near King's Pinnacle back...
Rock Climbing Photo: practice wall
practice wall
Rock Climbing Photo: base of the practice wall. nice hangout
base of the practice wall. nice hangout
Rock Climbing Photo: practice wall, BIG CRACK anchor. 5.4
practice wall, BIG CRACK anchor. 5.4
Rock Climbing Photo: Trundlasaurus Wall is the Black Cave area. That's ...
Trundlasaurus Wall is the Black Cave area. That's ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Sometimes Crowders Mountain is not so crowded.  Cr...
Sometimes Crowders Mountain is not so crowded. Cr...
Rock Climbing Photo: Lover's Lane 5.11
Lover's Lane 5.11
Rock Climbing Photo: Burn Crack  5.10  barefoot
Burn Crack 5.10 barefoot

Comments on Crowders Mountain Add Comment
Show which comments
By Joshua McDaniel
From: Johnson City, TN
Jul 3, 2011
Crowder's Mountain is a really interesting place to climb if you're in the area. The comment in the description that its quartzite is like that of other areas in NC is a bit off. There's really nothing in NC that quite compares. I've never climbed at Seneca WV, but the rock looks similar to these formations (on a smaller scale of course).

Crowders really has a little something for everyone. There's lots of of top-rope options. There's some moderate to difficult sport climbing. There's even a handfull of trad climbs. The low elevation makes climbing at Crowder's feasible during the winter. The main aspects of Crowder's are kind of a southeast (Hidden Wall, Practice Wall, David's Castle, and Red Wall) and west (Middle Finger, Two Pitch Wall) facing. Gumbies Wall/Fortress wall and Backside of Middle Finger sort of stay in the shade during the day.

Don't get me wrong, Crowder's is hot during the summer. However, if you hit Middle Finger or Backside of Middle Finger early in the day and then head to David's Castle or Red Wall late in the can chase the shade. Or do so in reverse during the winter to chase the sun.
By Edward Medina
From: Ridgway, CO
Jan 18, 2012
I've set to work 'organizing' a lot of the content in this location. I'd like to give credit where credit is due and thank Eddy Ramirez for all the hard work he has put into the photo-topos, route sorting, and descriptions. In an attempt to remove duplicated areas and routes I've consolidated all of Eddy's content into the existing areas. This preserves all the existing material (in some cases consisting of entries, photos, etc. directly from the FA party). I know Eddy feels very personally invested in this crag and I also know he doesn't agree with the way I've combined the content. We've had a few phone conversations since the 're-organization' and he has requested that his submissions be removed from the database. I'm hoping he'll reconsider. I know many people have benefited from his work, and I hope they will be able to continue benefiting. Nonetheless, I strongly feel that the change was necessary. MountainProject is built on the strength of the organization of the climbing areas represented herein, and the duplicated areas were not in keeping with their established model.
By Steve Lineberry
From: Charlotte, NC
Jan 19, 2012
Eddy, I also thought your content was excellent but I didn't enjoy having duplicated areas/routes. I like mountain project because of the level of scrutiny the site and administrators provide, unlike where the route db is a huge mess. Please reconsider keeping your excellent contributions to the consolidated areas/routes.

By Russ Keane
Dec 9, 2013
This place is surprisingly good. The rock is very nice: Kind of a "coral" feel and shape to it. Grippy and interesting. It seems hollow and flakey, but in the end nothing is really going to break off, and the climbing is varied and fun.

There are a lot of routes here, and it's rather pretty.
By Ezra Ellis
From: Hotlanta
Mar 10, 2015
Have to disagree with the above posters, I would only climb here if you are a local, or can't climb somewhere else.
After 15 years climbing, I have never seen worse rock quality , or more garbage strewn around the base of the climbs (probably from the tourons, not the climbers).
Stay away unless you like trash!
By molony
Jul 9, 2016
I think I may have left a chalkbag at David's Castle Wall about a week ago. It's brown and black fabric with a pink Organic Climbing patch. If anyone finds it, I'd appreciate it if you messaged me.
By Chris Little
Jul 27, 2017
A little short warning. Somebody said something about vandalism of Burned Crack. The indiginous fauna of the area (rednecks) can be a real hazard. Once a bunch of us were sitting at the bottom of the Red Wall and a beer bottle landed right in the middle of us. We jumped up and ran to the top, but there was no one there. Another time, I was at the top of David's Castle pulling up my rope. Somebody with a distinctive twang yanked on it and said "Pull me up!" They almost pulled me down. My truck was broken into down at the gate, and the rangers assured me that it happened a lot. I think a warning like this should be included in the description above.

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