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Stone Mountain South Face
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Unsorted Routes:

U Slot 

YDS: 5.7+ French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b PG13

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 140'
Original:  YDS: 5.7+ French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b PG13 [details]
FA: unknown
Page Views: 6,121
Submitted By: saxfiend on Nov 16, 2006

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (76)
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Having fun on U Slot


One of a number of ways to get to the Tree Ledge for the big climbs, this is an interesting route in its own right. Be ready for some of that hairy Stone Mountain runout. A good warmup for things to come!

Starting up a left-facing corner and hand crack, the climbing is well protected until you're about two-thirds of the way up. From there, a 30-40' runout section will get you to a shallow overhang, where you can thankfully place a cam before pulling the balancy move onto more friction to a short finish at bolted rap anchors on the Tree Ledge.


Starts just above the boulder field at the base of the mountain, about 30' right of Block Route. Scramble up to a left-facing corner with trees at the base. You'll need two ropes to rap down.


Medium gear; bolted anchors at the top.

Photos of U Slot Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: U-Slot topo
BETA PHOTO: U-Slot topo
Rock Climbing Photo: Climber Joe on U-slot.
Climber Joe on U-slot.
Rock Climbing Photo: Follow the rope line for the route we climbed on U...
BETA PHOTO: Follow the rope line for the route we climbed on U...
Rock Climbing Photo: U slot from the approach scramble.
BETA PHOTO: U slot from the approach scramble.
Rock Climbing Photo: Climber Joe starting U-slot.
Climber Joe starting U-slot.
Rock Climbing Photo: Plugging a piece before pulling the "slot&quo...
Plugging a piece before pulling the "slot&quo...
Rock Climbing Photo: A good view of the arete/flake before the slight r...
A good view of the arete/flake before the slight r...
Rock Climbing Photo: Another line up U-Slot. A bit run out between the ...
BETA PHOTO: Another line up U-Slot. A bit run out between the ...
Rock Climbing Photo: The rope shows the basic line you want to take whe...
BETA PHOTO: The rope shows the basic line you want to take whe...
Rock Climbing Photo: The base of Stone Mountain, these are some of the ...
BETA PHOTO: The base of Stone Mountain, these are some of the ...

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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jun 4, 2017
By Adam Kimmerly
Mar 26, 2007

Not knowing where the route actually went, I aimed up and left from the starting crack toward what I thought looked like a "U" slot in the overlap. I plugged a cam below and left of the notch and pulled the overlap with a big high-step and a good left-hand crimp. A bit heady and with a bad slab fall if you blow that move, this variation isn't any harder than the 5.8 rating given the standard route.
By George Heib
Oct 2, 2010
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b R

Selected climbs says to use the arete (sp) and climb that up and then straight to the lower portion of the overlap. We used the dihedral and protected there before heading up. There is a very small u shape on the left side of the main block. It makes the route more difficult and I really thing the run out brings it very close to a ground fall if you don't protect in the narrow water groove. For a 5.7 it is a very heady runout and I don't think many people that know much about slab should have any business on this route's runout. I honestly think one bolt in between would make this a much more enjoyable classic climb, but again, if you go straight up the feet are there and it can protect after the runout. I think I slipped once on the whole route but wow this was a very big wake up and introduction to Stone. So much that our group realized this was a different kind of slab as supposed to LG and we thought it best to rap after this climb to train up a bit more. What a fun climb though and a great view from the belay station. That one little bolt would put this as a super classic in my book, but then again, almost ever starting route at the base's first bolt is what: 30-35ft up. Gotta love NC's very unique ethics.
By Mike Holley
From: Boone, NC
Oct 20, 2011

Nice Climb and good way to access tree ledge. There are numerous ways to climb this route but taking the low line, using the crack, seems to be the easiest and offers the most pro. Do not let the mantle onto the large ledge near the top freak you out of this line because it protects like non other!

  • I think you need to link up two ropes if you want to attempt a standard TR*
By cmscheip Scheip
Dec 13, 2011

Mike you are absolutely right, you need two ropes if you want to set up TR or rappel down from the tree/anchors.

I have made this mistake before :/
By chris mcguigan
From: belmont, nc
Jan 29, 2012
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13

Learned today if you want to climb the route in the pic to the right of the tree on top of the traditional line bring some tri-cams and cams for flared cracks. Dont let the line pull you off to the left too far much like the guy in the pic.
By Jake Jones
From: Richmond, VA
May 7, 2012
rating: 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b

Flexibility helps to get a right foot up on the sharp part of the slot. I thrutched it up there doing kind of a lieback to get a toe up and then rocked my weight onto it. Easy runout to the closest solid tree to build a belay. For a less heady slab lead, but a slightly harder move onto the roof/bulge, try Block route to the left. I didn't find this route to be PG13 probably because I had some Metolius offsets. I think the yellow/orange 2/3 went in the shallow flaring crack that leads you to the bulge. Without protecting that crack, it could be PG13 but it is very protectable. Plenty of pro off the ground and I don't think I went more than 20ft or so without placing a piece. That's not PG13 for Stone- unless you're counting the distance from the "crux" to the closest tree to belay from which is about 5.3.
By Will Bradford
From: Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Feb 22, 2015

Note on needing two ropes to get down from tree ledge:
If you get up to tree ledge and find yourself needing to rap down with one rope, it is possible to do so using the anchors for U slot and carefully making your way climber's left about 30 feet laterally and ~60 feet down to reach the belay station for a neighboring route (not sure the name) about 40 ft off the ground. A 60 m rope will JUST BARELY reach so make sure you tie knots in the ends. Would strongly recommend bringing two ropes to rap from, but this is a possibility if you have no other choice.
By Steve Lineberry
From: Charlotte, NC
Feb 23, 2015

Yea, i think you are referring to the mid anchors on block route.
By Will Bradford
From: Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Mar 25, 2015

You are correct- they're the first anchors for block route.
By Nate Thompson
From: Columbia, SC
Apr 24, 2016
rating: 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13

I've climbed this route twice in the past two weeks and I could not decide which direction over the "roof" was on-route. I believe the correct route is actually to the right after following the initial crack up over the depression in the "roof" since you land just below the rap rings in this scenario. Lambert and Shull also outline the route in this way in their book. However, the more pronounced "u-slot" which perhaps is the namesake of this route on the left is way more fun. I can confirm the right foot high step with two crimp holds to get over the ledge - super fun move. At any rate I hope this alleviates some confusion.
By Colin Taggart
Jun 4, 2017

I found the top section after the overhang to be a bit dirty, which is scary after 30-40 feet since your last piece. Easy climbing, not harder than the hardest slab bits lower on the route, but I found it to be the headiest part.

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