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Slow Children 

YDS: 5.10d French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 21 British: E3 5b

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 100'
Original:  YDS: 5.10d French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 21 British: E3 5b [details]
FA: FFA: Terry Lien, Jon Carpenter, Pat McNerthney, Jon Nelson
Page Views: 12,022
Submitted By: Jesse James on Apr 15, 2006

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Nearing the last corner section of Slow Children (...

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This splitter finger crack has its hardest moves at the very start and the very end, though is pretty continuous throughout. It follows a shallow corner that switches sides a few times.

Start by traversing or directly mounting a flake in the left-facing corner. You can place a good piece here(.4 camalot), then make a strenuous move to get to good finger locks in a right facing corner. A short stemming section is encountered before the final splitter crack in a left facing corner.

There are two finishing pitches to choose from. the left one, Timmy's Sandbox, is around 5.11-, and the right one may be 5.10.


The most popular way to get to this pitch is by taking godzilla, then Pitch 2 of city park. This dumps you right at the base.


LOTS of small cams!!! Nuts don't work in this crack very well.

I think I may have used 4 yellow aliens.

Photos of Slow Children Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Top of Slow Children. So classic!
Top of Slow Children. So classic!
Rock Climbing Photo: The start
The start
Rock Climbing Photo: Climbers on SC
BETA PHOTO: Climbers on SC
Rock Climbing Photo: Climbers on SC
BETA PHOTO: Climbers on SC
Rock Climbing Photo: heading in to the crux finishing moves of the rout...
heading in to the crux finishing moves of the rout...

Comments on Slow Children Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jun 18, 2016
By john stiles
From: Bellingham
Sep 17, 2006

one of the funnest pitches i've ever done! go do it!
By Russ
Jan 31, 2007

The freight train crux makes the experience complete!
I can not remember topping out without the train, you might want to hang out in the upper dihedral and wait for one to come so you may have the pleasure of doing the upper crux ...properly.
By Ryan Triplett
May 15, 2008

Not a typo, but as for the significance ... I'm not sure.
By michal
From: Everett WA
Oct 29, 2009
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

Sloe children is a supper classic climb that to me is perfect. two sets of small cams would be great. pink tri cams are great too.
By Aaron Collins
From: Santan Valley, AZ
Jan 13, 2011

The best route I've ever been on!!
By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From: Bend, OR
Jun 17, 2011
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

Superb pitch. And despite being a finger crack most of the way, the climbing is amazingly varied.

If this is at your limit, bring alot of small cams. One could throw a truckload of blue, yellow, and orange mastercams at this thing (with the occasional smaller and bigger). The crack is quite parallel, and nuts will work - but you'll be working for them. You also get a few no hands rests, fortunately.

Getting established in the crack was surprisingly balancely the way we did it - walking your feet along the ledge. And that first jam is just... out.... of ..... reach....


(60m rope is fine for rapelling this and P2 of City Park). Double ropes recommended for the last rap down Godzilla.
By Jon Nelson
From: Bellingham, WA
Sep 19, 2011

About the name of this route, it is "Slow Children", not "Sloe". The name was based on its proximity to City Park.

The 1993 Clint Cummins guide had the name right (, but Smoot and Cramer mistakenly thought the name referred to the rock band "Sloe Children", which had a hit at about the same time as the route went up.
(Update, Sept 26: Route name corrected.)

Terry and I cleaned the route off on a wet winter day in mixed rain and snow, and then we climbed it on a later sunny day in two parties. Terry had a gun-barrel wire brush that worked wonderful for cleaning the inside of the crack. Perhaps that's one reason the route stayed clean long enough to become popular.

I think it's fantastic that the route has seen so many ascents. Enjoy the finger jams!
By dscramer
Sep 19, 2011

In the guide Jeff and I wrote (1980s) and in Jeff's subsequent guide it was Slow Children. For some reason I thought it had to do with the band and changed it in Sky Valley Rock. I am pretty sure Smoot just followed my lead his latest guide.
By Jon Nelson
From: Bellingham, WA
Mar 26, 2012

The route "An act of strange boar" at Lookout Point is very similar to Slow Children, but shorter and slightly thinner. It's also right off the ground, so if you don't want to do the approach pitches for SC, you can quickly test yourself on Strange Boar.
By earl mcalister
From: Las Vegas, NV
Dec 16, 2012

This is the best pitch I've ever done, anywhere. The crack and gear is perfect (with some spice off the ledge), the scenes are beautiful, and the exposure is excellent. Can't recommend this enough.
By Cornelius Jefferson
May 19, 2013

The crack takes decent stoppers.BITD I took a 30 foot lob from the top moves onto one (damn train/firing range) and it held fine.
By James Ellis
From: Seattle, Washington
Jul 31, 2013
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

1. I took triples of blue and yellow tcus, and four orange tcus. I think I only used two of the oranges.

2. There are several spots to place nuts on the pitch, and I think you could protect all but one or two sections reasonably well with nuts.

3. Getting off the ledge is balancy and reachy. I can imagine for shorter folk it could be very difficult. Fortunately for those people there's a conveniently placed bolt hanger that you can stand on.

4. That last move out of the top dihedral is......feisty.
By Jon Nelson
From: Bellingham, WA
Jul 31, 2013

In response to Jellis above:
"2. There are several spots to place nuts on the pitch, and I think you could protect all but one or two sections reasonably well with nuts."

True. And nuts is all we had on the first ascent! (Though we put in a fixed pin at the start.) But I couldn't do it now with only nuts, particularly the last section. A small TCU is sooo nice for the last move.
By Jimmy Downhillinthesnow
From: Bozeman, Montana
Mar 16, 2016

First time I climbed this, I followed it. When my leader was about 20 feet up, it started to rain lightly. Sure enough, at the upper crux a BNSF freight came by and game him the train crux as well.

I've done this 3 times and still haven't figured out the last moves. One of the hardest 5.10 pitches I've done anywhere, and harder than Thin Fingers in my book. Bring lots of blue/yellow Metolius-sized. Oh yeah, it's AMAZING climbing with phenomenal views. Don't miss it.
By Jon Todorovich
Jun 18, 2016

Probably the best 5.10 on the planet

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