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So-So Grotto

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Gargoyle, The 
Gulag, The 
Main Wall 
Satellites, The 

So-So Grotto Rock Climbing 

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Location: 40.79552, -123.52377 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 4,484
Administrators: Rick Shull, Lurker, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Lurker on Jan 29, 2014
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Relatively new climbing area. The rock is (metamorphosed?) granite, a nice change from the ubiquitous limestone of the North Coast. Rock quality goes from excellent to so-so, hence the name. As with any newer spot (or most areas in Humboldt), BE AWARE OF LOOSE ROCK.

Currently holds a smattering of bolted and gear routes, as well as a large and primarily undeveloped boulderfield. The routes are generally long, and could use a little more traffic. The Grotto hosts by far the best trad climb in the area, the 140' long Gnar-Gnar.

The majority of routes (on the main wall) face generally south, making this a fall/spring destination, although good conditions can potentially be found year-round.

Getting There 

The directions in the Bigfoot Country Climbing guidebook are absolutely wrong. Following the directions below should get you there fairly easily. 4WD/high clearance recommended for the last 1/2 mile, although you can just walk it as well.

If heading east on Hwy 299 from Arcata, take a right on Underwood Mountain Road/5N60, just outside of the small town of Burnt Ranch. After 3.1 miles, take a right on 5N27; another 1.1 miles, take a right on 5N10; another 0.4 miles, take a left on an unmarked road; another 0.7 miles, park at the huge clearing/landing.

Continue hiking down the road for ~5 minutes and look for a fairly obvious trail on the left. Follow the trail downhill for another 5 minutes, crossing over a small pond. Just after the pond, you should arrive on top of the large chasm that is the Grotto. Head down the trail on the left side. At the bottom of the trail, the large crag on your right is the Main Wall.

A nice campsite can be found just down the road from the old logging landing/parking area.

Climbing Season

Weather station 3.0 miles from here

16 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',4],['3 Stars',10],['2 Stars',1],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in So-So Grotto

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for So-So Grotto:
Gothic Edifice   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 65'   The Gargoyle
Gnar-Gnar   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Trad, 140'   Main Wall
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in So-So Grotto

Featured Route For So-So Grotto
Rock Climbing Photo: Bo on the finishing hand crack of Gnar-Gnar.  The ...

Gnar-Gnar 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b  California : Redwood Coast : ... : Main Wall
Best trad route in the Humboldt area? 140 feet of goodness...airy, steep, and relentless. Starts on an obvious flake system in the middle of the wall. Traverse up and right on the flake for ~40', to the first crux bulge. Route is mostly hands after this point, with another bulge crux about 2/3 of the way up. Bring ALOT of long runners....[more]   Browse More Classics in California

Photos of So-So Grotto Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: The Grotto
The Grotto
Rock Climbing Photo: The trail, hiking back towards the car.
The trail, hiking back towards the car.
Rock Climbing Photo: The Grotto
The Grotto

Comments on So-So Grotto Add Comment
Show which comments
By Lurker
From: Westwood
Mar 22, 2014
Gonna try to get some photos this weekend. Usually get so busy climbing I forget about the camera. Pretty amazing spot tho!
By Benjamin F
From: Crescent City, CA
Mar 22, 2014
We got excellent photos of Gnar Gnar and Skullfuck today. Will post them soon.
By Matthias Holladay
From: Durango, Colorado
Mar 22, 2014
Thanks for the fotografs!

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