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Little Finger 

YDS: 5.5 French: 4b Ewbanks: 13 UIAA: IV+ ZA: 11 British: MS 4a

Type:  Trad, 3 pitches, 600'
Original:  YDS: 5.5 French: 4b Ewbanks: 13 UIAA: IV+ ZA: 11 British: MS 4a [details]
FA: ?
Page Views: 24,747
Submitted By: Brian Aitken on Jan 17, 2008

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (96)
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seconding little finger (first pitch)


No real crux moves, pretty straight forward slab/crack climbing. Bring some snacks and beverages to hang out at the base when you're all done - makes a great spot for dinner and a swim, just make sure to pack it out.


Start at the lowest point of the cliff scramble up right 20' above the water - follow the crack system...


standard trad rack - don't recall any fixed gear. People generally say the route goes between 5.5 and 5.7, so I've rated it 5.6 - I don't recall thinking it was difficult at all, except that my toes were hurting something fierce when I was done...

Photos of Little Finger Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Roger's Rock , Lake George
Roger's Rock , Lake George
Rock Climbing Photo: Climber on Little Finger
Climber on Little Finger
Rock Climbing Photo: TJ following me up the last bit of the direct fini...
TJ following me up the last bit of the direct fini...
Rock Climbing Photo: Near the end of P3 of Little Finger.
Near the end of P3 of Little Finger.
Rock Climbing Photo: Roger's rock Lake George NY
Roger's rock Lake George NY
Rock Climbing Photo: This sure makes it look steeper than it is!  This ...
This sure makes it look steeper than it is! This ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Definitely G rated, this is everything I got in on...
BETA PHOTO: Definitely G rated, this is everything I got in on...
Rock Climbing Photo: Amazing first pitch!
Amazing first pitch!
Rock Climbing Photo: Little finger from the water
Little finger from the water
Rock Climbing Photo: Start of first pitch, nice shaded area to belay fr...
Start of first pitch, nice shaded area to belay fr...
Rock Climbing Photo: Roger's Rock approach . About 10 minutes before we...
Roger's Rock approach . About 10 minutes before we...

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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Aug 30, 2017
By Puzman puziss
Jun 29, 2009

5.6 it's not. The guidebook rates it at 5.5, and except for a short crux section at the beginning of P3, most of the climbing is much easier than that. Gear is good for most of the route, though there is some pretty hollow rock on P2 and the beginning of P3. Definitely gets hot- lots of sun! Position above the lake is spectacular- one of my favorite climbs for the views alone!
By Gunkiemike
Aug 21, 2009

Two ropes make the rap much easier. With one rope you'll be tunneling into the woods to find the next slung tree.
By Eli Kramer
From: Saratoga Springs, NY
Sep 14, 2009
rating: 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a

Agreed, two ropes if you can. There is a fixed anchor (two pitons) at the end of the first pitch. I didn't use any gear bigger than a .75 Camalot, though you could probably place a #1.
By al piner
Oct 24, 2009
rating: 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a PG13

Fun climb with adventurous approach .We took canoes and ended up in 50 degree Lake George when we fell out going ashore to the rocks .Tip: I put my life jacket on my pack because I can swim and it cannot . It worked , no diving for the rack ! A windy rainy October morning but the sun came out and we were semi dry by pitch two .

Pitch one was wet and slippery due to morning rain but was still within its 5.5 rating . Off the third pitch anchors we made it down on two double rope rappels with 60M ropes.The crux was paddling back for a half hour into a 20 mph headwind !
By doligo
Jun 14, 2010

Very fun route. As the book says, there is a real danger of burning the feet of your soles - I did mine! If you don't feel like paddling, you can hitch a ride on a motorboat from Hague Marina. Tourists love it!
By Puzman puziss
Oct 12, 2010

Did the route for the 3rd time this past weekend, this time leading the Direct Finish on the 3rd pitch. Guidebook calls it 5.7+, which feels about right. Protects well with small-medium nuts and cams. A beautiful clean line, straight up the crack to bolt anchors. Spices up an otherwise very easy route. Highly recommended.
By Kevin Heckeler
From: Upstate New York
Jun 20, 2011
rating: 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a

Can't stress enough how much small gear this route will eat up. P1 is a long pitch and while you can (and I did) run it out a bit, by the book G pro placements will likely mean depleting much of your rack. P1 nothing bigger than a #1, but did use a #3 to protect the start of P2, a #1 as a first piece in the crack below the small roof/bulge at the top of the belay for P2, and a #2 on P3. You might be able to climb through these sections to different (smaller) gear, but I felt pretty locked in and the spots I chose seemed 'right'.

Also can't stress how awesome this climb is. Also did the first two pitches on a neighboring Screaming Meaney (5.7 pitches) with awesome moves on the second pitch. All the climbing we did ranked better than Chapel Pond slab, which is to say just how spectacular this location is. 5 star climbing by any measure.

Beware that early season (like my second trip yesterday revealed) means a lot of debris from budding trees in the crack. Spent a lot of time cleaning holds and the crack when placing gear.
By Jon Po
From: Mahwah, NJ
Aug 24, 2014

Direct finish felt easy for Adirondack 5.7+ Lots of hollow rock on p2.. It's good to belay 15 or 20 below the direct roof because the gear is more solid. I ended up down climbing 15 or so..
By petzl logic
Sep 1, 2014

Rule #1 bring small gear

Rule #2 read rule number 1 (there are quite a few abandoned cams right now)
By Ian Dibbs
Sep 4, 2014

I am surprised that more haven't exclaimed ..... the sun !!! The route is positioned to receive, long, powerfull sunshine, and there is a strong possibility you will get fried between 10:00 and 4:00. If it is sunny be prepared !!! And yes, you will probably have an audience from boaters, some even "offer" encouragement.
By J. Serpico
From: Saratoga County, NY
Oct 28, 2014
rating: 5.3 3+ 10 III 9 VD 3a

One thing no one has mentioned. The anchors appear to be flat bolts, the type you can rap off of without rings. I didn't know these existed, and my group ended up having a bit more challenging descent than climb. We opted for the rings to the right, rapped to nowhere, and then ended up on a tree with a hidden bolt after ascending back up 40ft. I guess most people know there are flat bolts besides me, but in case you didn't, it's good beta.

As far as the climb. I love slabs so this should be taken with a grain of salt, but I've now led all three pitches over a 12 year span, and I can't even determine where this is 5.5. It's easier than Chapel Pond Slab and it's easier than a lot of 5.4 slabs I've been on. Gear is outstanding once you clean the fall leaves and pine needles out, and there are hands 95% of the time. Coming off the 2nd belay there is a little bit of steep climbing and the gear is below you, but beyond that I think 5.5 is optimistic. All that said, it's a fun day and a fun climb in a great setting. I'd highly recommend it. I don't, however, think it's better than CP Slab.

Next time, I'm definitely going with the 5.7 and some of the adjacent route, which looks fun.

Oh and the sun....the sun even in late October is brutal. I cannot imagine climbing this mid summer on a sunny day.
By Bill Kirby
From: Baltimore Maryland
Jul 1, 2015

The rappel is straight forward. There are rings at the top of pitch 3. Two 60M ropes get you about 20 feet below the top of the second pitch. The second rap gets you about level with the top of the first pitch and those rings get you to the ground. 3 rappels total. All stations have rings.

I would say the 5.5 rating is correct. I felt Little Finger was harder than Chapel Pond Slab. Placing gear on Regular Route is casual where my calfs felt it whether placing or cleaning gear on pitch 3 of Little Finger.

Bought doubles .2-.75, one .1, #1 and #2. Left the #3
By Andy Munas
From: Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
Aug 31, 2015

I brought 4 purple linking cams which were super handy. Didn't bring the #3 Camalot. Could have left the #2 Camalot also. Basically quadruple up in the 0.3 - 0.5 range as other people are suggesting.

We made it to the ground (from the top of the 5.5 finish) in two double 60 meter raps. Such a fun route. Must do.
By Gunks Jesse
From: Shawangunk Township, NY
Oct 11, 2015

Brought (1) .2, doubles .3-.75, (1) 1. Plus set of offsets and FULL set of standard nuts. 14 draws/slings total. Only really needed (2) 60 cm slings at the traverse on P3. Didn't need the 120 cm at all, but used them folded down.

Definitely never needed anything larger than a 1 and found a single placement for the 1 on each pitch.
By Benjamin Thompson
From: Saranac Lake, NY
Aug 10, 2016

Fun climb! Did this yesterday (8/9/16) and forgot the sunscreen...bad idea. Anyway as for gear this thing ate up nuts like there was no tomorrow. I think I only placed two or three cams total. Bring a double or maybe even triple set of nuts if you like placing passive gear over plugging cams
By Lauren LittleRedClimbingHood
From: New York City, NY
Sep 5, 2016
rating: 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a

This was a lovely day in a lovely place, but the rock quality is a little suboptimal for a popular, more-or-less straight up-and-down climb. There are a good number of suspicious features like very hollow flakes and loose jugs, and there's not really anywhere to hide from the person climbing above you. Happily, nothing fell while we were there except someone's wallet (he got it back). The gear gets a "G" rating, but I would hesitate sending a new leader up because the placements and even the two gear anchors required more thought than typical cruiser 5.5G, due to rock quality. Depending on your comfort level, extras in small cams can be helpful, but if you don't have quadruple 0.4's, go ahead and bring #1, #2, and #3 because there are some placements that you can make work. The #3 on P2 isn't textbook but would probably hold.
By Mikey C
From: Saranac Lake, NY
Feb 5, 2017

Sunscreen is aid
By El Duderino
May 22, 2017

An awesome climb in a great location. We rented canoes from the DEC campground at Rogers Rock ($10 parking, $20 rental) and casually paddled over, moored our boat, and started up the crack. I think the first pitch is a pretty good first lead assuming they've mock led before: good exposure, lots of pro and easy climbing punctuated by a few committing moves. The climbing throughout is interesting. It's definitely not a pure crack climb and involves some slab skills, but there's often a good fingerlock in a pod not far away. Climb 180ft to 2 fixed pitons. They are rather far apart from one another, so bring a cordalette. The second pitch has a few tricky moves early on, so put in that Jesus nut. Be careful at the top of P2. There are several fairly large and very hollow flakes that I'm fairly positive could very easily come off with a strong tug. I see this has been an issue for the past few years, so perhaps they're more stable than I think, but this season's freeze thaw cycle may have exacerbated the problem. Be sure to save a few smaller pieces to anchor the solid rock under the roof of P2 and I would not place any load bearing pieces on those flakes. The third pitch, I thought, was the easiest and best of the whole route, despite the traverse under the roof to the cracks, which most people seem to say is the crux. Once you get back into the crack, it's cruiser to the finish. I'd say leave the #3 at home as I placed it once over the whole route and that placement was pretty superfluous. It ate up nuts and smaller pieces, though. Definitely bring the sunscreen as you're likely to get fried, especially in the height of summer. I'd say that this is a shoulder season climb. Rap off the two fixed bolts at the end of P3. Tagging a line may be a pain in the butt on the way up, but I reckon it's worth it to simplify the rappel. We had the whole wall to ourselves on a beautiful spring day and it was another great ADK experience.
By Cidamon GD
From: woodbury
May 29, 2017
rating: 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a PG13

will be wet after rain, bring two ropes, bring some smokes, a few jokes, maybe a toke

p1: start at large blocks in finger width crack system leading slab with minimal difficulty, maybe a 5.5 to belay station (2 pitons) directly above. small nuts and cams a must. big butts and moves a certainty.
p2: continue crack system to bowl-like ledge under tiny roof and bulge. make your own anchor in a nice nest-like location. short pitch.
p3: 2 variations - v1 continue to climbers right around bulge and up crack system, very wet after rain, easy moves, great protection, working your way diagonal to rap station with two eye bolts. v2 continue straight above p2 over roof and bulges. although rated a 5.7+ this only has 2 real 5.7 moves with bomber protection. all other moves are 5.4 - 5.5. after bulges route can cut diagonal to rap station. very run out 5.3 slab above bulges, very limited protection.
By Auto-X Fil
From: NEPA and Upper Jay, NY
Jul 24, 2017

Excellent route! The climbing is sustained at 5.3-5.4, except for a couple moves low on P1 and at the start of P3, which are more like 5.5, and the final 4th class romp at the end of P3.

The 2010 Adirondack Rock guidebook shows canoe access closer to the climbs than the main boat launch - this is now gone and replaced with campsites and no drive-in access. You have to paddle all the way from the main launch, which is still a pretty short canoe trip. Beware wind and wakes!

Gear is excellent, especially small to medium nut placements. The loose flakes at the top of P2 are tricky and scary, but if you tiptoe over them, there is good gear under the roof if you have cams or tricams that will fit. A #2 Camalot and yellow Mastercam worked well for me, and I got a pink tricam into the crack below the roof, deep enough to anchor solid rock below the flakes. Other than those flakes, gear placements are abundant and bomber. Swapping leads with a new lead climber and giving them 1 and 3 would work well, especially if you got a Jesus nut in the start of P3 for them.

The climbing is great, with more variety than I expected. There's plenty of positive holds and pure friction to go along with finger-locks and the occasional hand jam. It's one of those routes where it's always a little easier than it looks from below, especially P3.

Rappels are straightforward if you have two 60m ropes - I don't think two 50m would work.
By Hobo Greg
Aug 24, 2017

The direct finish is awesome. Do you even direct, brah? Great warmup cuz the feet are similar to the .7s and .8s, but you have hands (fingers, rather) everywhere.
By Tina Roberts
Aug 30, 2017

Does anyone take their own small motorboat out to the climbs? Or just kayak/canoe or tourist motorboat? If so, how early could one launch?

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