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Shelving Rock

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Shelving Rock Rock Climbing 

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Location: 43.55552, -73.60298 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 35,271
Administrators: Jim Lawyer, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Benjaminadk on Aug 10, 2012  with updates from Ryan and Jesse Morse-Brady
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Lake George from the route Breaking Bad


Shelving Rock is a destination cliff on the east side of Lake George. Shelving has seen a ton of development in the last few years and is not included in the paper edition of Adirondack Rock. However, ADK rock has kept up on their website.

The approach is short 5-20min depending on which wall you go to. The views of Lake George are first class. There are over 75 routes ranging from 5.5 to 5.12+. Many of the climbs are modern trad (gear and bolts). There are also many straight up sport climbs. Some walls get direct sun and some are shady giving the climber options depending on weather conditions.

This cliff is awesome if you are climbing anywhere near Lake George it is well worth it.

Note: Helmets are recomended for climber and belayer. Lots of choss was cleaned during development but occasionally more loose rock is encountered.

Getting There 

From exit 20 of the Northway (I-87) head north on Route 9 for a couple minutes, then take a right onto Route 149. Follow Route 149 into Washington County and turn LEFT onto Buttermilk Falls Road. Follow this straight out until it becomes dirt. Continue until the Upper Hogtown Parking Area (Sleeping Beauty) is directly ahead. Turn left and go downhill on a dirt and paved road for a couple miles. Look for the Shelving Rock hiking trailhead on your right. Continue past this to the next large parking lot on the left. The parking lot is U-shaped, and will have a small sign with the number four. Look for a path across the road (right hand side) and slightly north of the parking area. The parking lot is just under 14 miles from 149. Total drive time from the highway is about 40 minutes, depending on how gentle you are to car on the dirt sections.

Climbing Season

Weather station 8.1 miles from here

60 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',3],['3 Stars',22],['2 Stars',21],['1 Star',11],['Bomb',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Shelving Rock

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Shelving Rock:
Devo   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 1 pitch, 95'   Neanderthal Cave
Breaking Bad   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Sport, 70'   Neanderthal Cave
The Gong Show   5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   Main Wall
Doodle Bug   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a PG13     Trad, Sport, 100'   Main Wall
Snake Charmer   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 100'   Main Wall
Rock Lobster   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   Main Wall
Caribou Barbie   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, Sport, 90'   Politico Wall
Hackett Corner   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, Sport, 100'   Main Wall
Diva   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Sport, 95'   Neanderthal Cave
Three Degrees Of Separation   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, Sport, 100'   Carhartt Wall
Monty Python   5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b     Trad, 2 pitches, 180'   Main Wall
The Cenotaph   5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b     Sport, 75'   Carhartt Wall
Wake and Bake   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 2 pitches, 170'   Main Wall
Johnny Tsunami   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Sport, 90'   The Big Wall
Two Pots to Piss In   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, 50'   Ark Wall
Oracle   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 70'   Ark Wall
Die By The Drop   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Sport, 90'   The Big Wall
Two Evil Deeds   5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b     Trad, 70'   Ark Wall
Claim Jumper   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 100'   Main Wall
Rusty Lumberjack   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Trad, Sport, 100'   Main Wall
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Shelving Rock

Featured Route For Shelving Rock
Rock Climbing Photo: Suzy Williams on lead  Beautiful view of Lake Geor...

Breaking Bad 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c  NY : Adirondacks : ... : Neanderthal Cave
Starts on easier climbing and quickly gets harder through a long sustained section in a right slanting corner. Pull through the difficulties to a stance and make one more move to the anchors....[more]   Browse More Classics in NY

Photos of Shelving Rock Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Surprisingly, this is from the bottom of the big w...
Surprisingly, this is from the bottom of the big w...

Comments on Shelving Rock Add Comment
Show which comments
By Kevin Heckeler
From: Upstate New York
May 30, 2013
There A LOT of climbing here and much of it is listed on the Adirondack Rock goodies page fwiw...

Don't know if I'd give it 4 stars when compared to other 4 star ADK areas, but it's certainly a quality climbing area with some (rare) all sport routes.
By Gunkiemike
Aug 25, 2013
CORRECTION - the turn onto Buttermilk Rd is a LEFT (i.e. north) turn off Rt 149.
By Benjaminadk
From: San Pedro, California
May 15, 2014
Thanks Mike.
By JVB Project
From: Berkeley CA
Aug 18, 2014
Make sure that you drive past the official ADK shelving rock sign. Not the little ones for the falls or hikes.
By Dan L.
From: Saratoga Springs, New York
Sep 14, 2014

I lost a Metolius Master cam (size 5, the black one) doing a demo of how cams work. Its right near the base of Devo and Deva. If you can get it unwedged, my phone number is 203-727-8205.

Have a fun and safe climb.


By Spiro
Aug 31, 2015

Anyone have any info on the camping situation near Shelving Rock? Looking for a site, ok with a short drive if there is some place nice near by.


By Benjaminadk
From: San Pedro, California
Sep 19, 2015
On the drive in you will pass a handful of designated camping sites. At best you will get a fire pit and an out house. Other than that I believe camping is permitted on state land as long as you are 100 feet from trails, roads and waterways. Someone correct me if I'm wrong. I can't think of the closest state campground with full on showers other than Battlefield in lake george village. I'm not super familiar with fort Ann but there may be something closer. The pluses of camping near the crag are huge though...saves driving in all the way in there everyday and being so close to the lake for a swim is a major plus. Maybe someone local can chime in with more info that's all I can think of to say...actually there must be a couple rv parks on 149 that allow tents that are a little closer. Really someone could pitch a tent off the path right in front of the cliff if they wanted so long as they followed the above DEC rules.

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