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Cathey's Creek Crag

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Cathey's Creek Crag  

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Location: 35.2273, -82.8034 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 18,520
Administrators: saxfiend, Edward Medina, Ryan Williams, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: esingleton on May 31, 2012
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BETA PHOTO: The tree of life.

Tread lightly and carpool. Leave no trace! MORE INFO >>>

Cathy's Creek 

Cathy's Creek is quite the anomaly for Pisgah forest. It is overhanging and stays dry in a thunderstorm. The area is in the shade for most of the day. The climbing is powerful and gymnastic. A great resource for Pisgah climbers and those traveling through town. Please respect the wild and natural state of the area. Keep your dogs on a leash and pack out what you pack in.

Nathan Brown and Eric Singleton began working on establishing routes in the Winter of 2012 after being shown the area by local Brevard College Students and climbers, Bennett Anderson and Davis King. Bennett and Davis had been scouting the area for several months before reaching out to Nathan and Eric for help in establishing the area.

This crag is the realization of a dream Pisgah climbers have had for generations. To have overhanging, pumpy routes focusing on pure difficulty is truly a treasure and we must treat it like one.

Routes were done top down and ground up, making it one of the few transitions cliff in Pisgah, allowing different ethics and styles to exist side by side. So each route has its own, unique character. You may get on a line and find yourself fist deep in a crack stemming your brains out or you could get on a line and find yourself with two fantastic slopers and a knee-bar.

Please respect the natural beauty of this area. Yes it is a crag but it is also part of a National Forest and should be kept pristine! Practice Leave No Trace ethics at all times.

This is not an excellent cliff for beginners or children. There is lots of loose rock and the routes are technically and physically difficult. Even the sport lines have some small run outs. Just keep in mind this is a North Carolina Crag established by North Carolina climbers and use your best judgement at all times.

Getting There 

Located above Cathy's Creek Falls. Please park sensibly and do not obstruct the forest service road. There is parking for 10 cars if you don't mind walking a few hundred yards up or down the road depending on where you park. CARPOOL CARPOOL CARPOOL.

P.S. This crag may be hard to find if you lack a basic sense of direction. Park at the concrete bridge past the falls

Climbing Season

Weather station 3.7 miles from here

21 Total Routes

['4 Stars',4],['3 Stars',13],['2 Stars',3],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Cathey's Creek Crag:
LNT   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   The Cave
Risk Radar   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     Trad, 55'   The Cave
Junk Show   5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b     Trad, 1 pitch, 90'   The Cave
Old Crow   5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   The Cave
Jack in the Pulpit   5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a PG13     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   The Gateway Wall
Cathy's Corner   5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a     Trad, 1 pitch, 55'   The Cave
Crown Royal   5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 40'   The Sport Wall
Browse More Classics in Cathey's Creek Crag

Featured Route For Cathey's Creek Crag
Nathan Brown on the FA of Black Snake

Black Snake 5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b  NC : Cathey's Creek Crag : The Cave
Either start directly under first bolt and lieback up to "the plank" or start slightly right and climb out good holds to first bolt. Make powerful moves then clip 2nd bolt and pull over right onto the to face/corner system. Stem up to large roof, exiting left to gear and jugs (the holds can be seepy here but it doesn't impact the difficulty too much). Get high stance to clip 3rd bolt out right. Pull awkward move around corner to a stance. Watch rope drag here. Stem and pull up and left past jugs...[more]   Browse More Classics in NC

Comments on Cathey's Creek Crag Add Comment
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By andjoely
From: Menlo Park, CA
Jun 1, 2012
Most of the routes stay dry in the rain so it's one of the better spots in the area to climb on rainy days. It's definitely a high quality and locally significant small crag. I really enjoyed the incredibly pumpy climbing there.
By Mike Reardon
Apr 16, 2013
First off, thanks to Nathan Brown and Eric Singleton for making this place happen!
If interested... Check out cedarrockguide.com for a copy of your "Cedar Rock and Satellite Crags", outlining 200+ climbs the Cathey's/ Cedar Rock area. The book covers all 7 faces of Cedar in full detail, Victory Wall, Cathey's Creek, Pilot Rock, Fish Bowl Crag, and an abridged John Rock. You can order online or message me for a $23 copy. Enjoy!
By nbrown
From: western NC
Dec 12, 2013

A relevant topic to this area which is apparently now being used for drytooling practice. I know the place has more than its fair share of choss, but there are a few worthwhile routes that deserve not to be ruined by this practice. I ask that those considering this to at least have enough imagination to create their own tool-friendly routes, and not destroy other people's hard work. Show some respect please!
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Jun 16, 2014
It would be easier to enjoy this resource if the original poster had put more time into providing actual directions to the crag rather than sermonizing about climbing ethics.
By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Jun 25, 2014

I was able to find the falls after driving back & forth a bit, but the location of the crag was still a mystery & with the June foliage in full bloom and checking out a few dead ends it ended up being a waste of time. A few sentences of added details about the exact location of the crag would have really helped.

Having put up over 500 routes myself, I understand the work involved, but if you are going to post up a crag, at least give decent directions, or fair warning that a crag may be hard to find.

By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Jun 27, 2014
Not hardly a troll, just frustrated with trying to find what appeared from the description to be an easy to find crag. What exactly does "above" mean, up the hill on the north side of the valley, upstream, or uphill on the south side? Like I said, a few sentences about the exact location of the crag would really help. Something like X.X miles west of the intersection of Cathey's Creek Road and US 64 is a bridge across Cathey's Creek, park on the north side of the creek, a faint trail leads from ___ going ___, etc. (some details of the location relative to the falls or road or something). While it may all be plainly obvious during the winter when the leaves are gone, in the summer when the jungle is in full bloom, you could be 10 feet away from something and not see it. Despite my advanced age (climbed at Lookingglass in the 70s & did Peregrine 9 years before the FA), I still lead 5.12 and my teenage son leads 13, so I think we could climb the routes there. While it may be another 30 years before I make my way back there again, it would be a big favor to other visitors to add just a bit more details to the description for the crag location.
By esingleton
Oct 13, 2014
Will be correcting the bolts on Crown Royal to keep them from spinning. Second bolt on treehugger has an X so I will also inspect that and make the proper corrections along with replacing the missing hanger on Old Crow. 10/13/14
By JasonP
From: Clemson, SC
3 days ago
Enter the trail through the obvious trailhead by the concrete bridge just upstream of the falls. Follow the trail on the right that heads in the downstream direction. The falls will be within 100 yards or so on your right the whole time. The crag is approximately 10 minutes from the trail head and only a couple hundred yards up the hill from the creek.

Now anyone with a basic sense of direction can find it.