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Shovel Point

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A Dream of White Sheep TR 
A Study in Scarlet TR 
Balance of Power TR 
Cornered TR 
Dance of the Sugar-Plump Faeries TR 
Did Plato Love Trees? T 
Ego-itis T,TR 
Gold Plated TR 
Great Barrier Roof, The T,TR 
Great Yawn, The T,TR 
Narcoleptic Epic T,TR 
Out On A Limb T,TR 
Rise Over Run TR 
Ross's Crack T,TR 
Sacred Biscuit TR 
Soldier of God TR 
Straight, No Chaser TR 
Straw House TR 
Tree Route, The TR 
Wake Up and Smell the Coffee TR 

Shovel Point  

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Location: 47.33971, -91.1876 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 32,599
Administrators: Kris Gorny, Chris treggE, James Loveridge, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: nodin on Apr 12, 2006
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The more moderate of Tettegouche's two sea cliff crags, Shovel is more popular with boy scout troops, church groups and top ropers. This notwithstanding, more than a handfull of full value classics are to be found here. Must-dos include Dance of the Sugarplum Fairies, Gold Plated, Rosses Crack and others.

This spot is popular with tourists as well and they will likely watch you climb and ask you questions.

You are encouraged to stay on the trails and use the new statepark placed anchors (the biggest bolt hangers ever!). Be kind to the trees as well...

Getting There 

Park at the statepark rest stop and hike northeast following the signs.

Climbing Season

Weather station 13.5 miles from here

20 Total Routes

['4 Stars',2],['3 Stars',14],['2 Stars',3],['1 Star',0],['Bomb',1]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Shovel Point:
Out On A Limb   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Trad, TR, 50'   
The Great Yawn   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 70'   
Rise Over Run   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     TR, 1 pitch, 70'   
Dance of the Sugar-Plump Faeries   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     TR, 1 pitch, 60'   
A Dream of White Sheep   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     TR, 1 pitch, 60'   
Did Plato Love Trees?   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a PG13     Trad, 3 pitches, 200'   
Cornered   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     TR, 100'   
A Study in Scarlet   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     TR, 120'   
Ross's Crack   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 60'   
Gold Plated   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b     TR, 1 pitch, 50'   
Sacred Biscuit   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     TR, 120'   
Narcoleptic Epic   5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a     Trad, TR, 70'   
Browse More Classics in Shovel Point

Featured Route For Shovel Point
Tony Young approaching the roof section

Straw House 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c  MN : Rock : ... : Shovel Point
Excellent work, Mr. Harkness, for giving us this line. It's the best at the cliff, and not deadly for the grade (probably a little soft). It hits the best position at Shovel Point, the rock is good, and the moves are surprisingly easy for the feature that you climb. It's a small miracle that the rock is just featured enough in this spot as to allow such a magnificent line....[more]   Browse More Classics in MN

Photos of Shovel Point Slideshow Add Photo
Can't remember which route, scan of a print, sprin...
Can't remember which route, scan of a print, sprin...
Shovel Point.
Shovel Point.
Derrik Patola --Giant Anchors!
Derrik Patola --Giant Anchors!
View from the top
View from the top
Shovel Point, August 2011.
Shovel Point, August 2011.
Shovel Point on a cloudy February morning.
Shovel Point on a cloudy February morning.
Shovel Point as seen from Palisade Head.
Shovel Point as seen from Palisade Head.
Setting up a belay on I think Ross's Crack.  Sprin...
Setting up a belay on I think Ross's Crack. Sprin...
Can't remember which route, spring 2004.  Amazing ...
Can't remember which route, spring 2004. Amazing ...
Zach Vavricka on Only the Lonely
Zach Vavricka on Only the Lonely

Comments on Shovel Point Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Aug 23, 2013
By Little Chamonix
From: Cumbria.UK
Jan 25, 2009
This crag was opened out by Paul Ross and assistants while working for Minn Outward Bound School about 1973/4 .At that time here was not even a trail out to the cliff . There was a massive amount of loose rock on most of the climbs when first ascended.At this time about 12 climbs were first ascended up to 5.10, some for the use of students and some for their own personal fun.
By Brian Weinstein
Jan 26, 2009
Was that the story for Palisade as well?
By ferrells
May 4, 2011
Great new hangers now at the tops of the most often climbed pitches!
I am honored to be part of a community that was able to make this happen. Let the regrowth begin!
By Matthias Holladay
From: Durango, Colorado
Sep 8, 2011
"The more moderate of Tettegouche's two sea cliff crags, Shovel is . . ."

I'm sorry, but despite how large Superior is, it IS a lake, hence the North Shore's cliffs are lake cliffs--NOT sea cliffs.

Go to the Redwood Coast or Acadia for true sea cliff climbing here in the USA!
By Dave Rone
From: Eau Claire, Wis
Sep 8, 2011
Your observation is about as meaningful as which came first, the chicken or the egg. Climb on Palisade Head or Shovel Point and you know what sea cliff climbing is all about.
By Matthias Holladay
From: Durango, Colorado
Sep 18, 2011
You are right and I apologise for being a stickler for semantics. And please don't get me wrong, I'm sure it is especially lovely, committing, and fun---I'd be honored to climb there someday as I truly LOVE cliffs by water.
But the water on the ocean sometimes has big waves, and I mean big ones, and the air and the roar create a briny aroma which permeates everything...
By josh wabaunsee
Sep 19, 2011
salt air? nope

big enough body of water to generate its own weather? check

big waves? define big, i do know on a rough day it makes me nervous to turn my back to the lake as i stand on the shore.

Hardest of the hardcore surf the lake in the winter.
By Garrett Genereux
Apr 24, 2012
I was up at Shovel Point this past weekend, and while having some fun on Soldier of God we noticed some peregrine falcons switching spots on a nest just around the corner from us. When I spoke to park staff about it, she said that they aren't sure how many nesting pairs there are on Shovel Point this year and that they were getting ready to start putting up definitive route closure signs soon. I would guess that it is possible that Out on a Limb through Soldier of God will be closed through nesting season.
By Matthias Holladay
From: Durango, Colorado
Sep 9, 2012
Define big, eh? Well, whilst new routing on sea cliffs on The Redwood Coast years ago (on the cliff itself proper, not "standing on the shore," my belayer was inundated by a rogue wave which rolled in from the Far East, all the way across the North Pacific Ocean, knocked him almost unconscious & off his stance. Had he not been anchored, I would have been pulled from the tenuous moves I was making.

So sorry, as fantastic as your area is, and it does look wonderful, it is still a LAKE cliff. Perhaps with "nailing and bolting ... not allowed," no wonder you are a bit testy about your especially beautiful place.

That would be deplorable! TR-ing a new line from the rim and not being able to bolt it for a some real adrenaline on the sharp end...or scoping an amazing traverse just above those glorious wave-lets, and not even be able to pound a KB or bolt...unless you covertly did it and then did not document it, except via word of mouth...that would be pleasant...

Oh, and having done many new routes on actual sea cliffs, I think I know what true sea cliff climbing is all about, thank you. ;-D
By Colin R
From: Ottawa, ON
Dec 8, 2012

Remember this isn't a surfing web site so your points are moot as far as I am concerned. Do rogue waves inspire you to climb better? Probably not I am guessing. I am also going to guess that the scenery, location, ambience, exposure and most of all the quality of rock are what matters most and this place looks like it has all of that and then some.

If they want to call it a sea cliff because it resembles one pretty much to the T then why not just let them?

PS - Ever heard of the phrase "inland ocean"?
By Evan Johnson
From: Minneapolis, MN
Jan 23, 2013
@Matthias Holladay:

big = "Annual storms on Lake Superior regularly record wave heights of over 6 metres (20 ft). Waves well over 9 metres (30 ft) have been recorded." - wiki
By Ryan Steel
From: Twin Cities, MN
Aug 23, 2013
I understand the no-chalk policy. However, is it acceptable to use chalkless chalk or organic chalk? I'm about to climb up at Tettegouche for the first time, and I just want to make sure that I don't upset anybody, hurt the rock, or upset the peregrines and others in the local habitat (and I don't really want to start/continue the chalk vs no chalk debate, I'm just asking a practical question).

Any thoughts or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
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