This Rock requires a bit of a hike, but is well worth it for its pleasant shaded atmosphere, and the number of moderate slab routes (5.8-5.11mumble) it offers. All of the routes can be relatively easily top roped, and most are bolted.
Approach Time: 10 - 20 minutes.
Start from the Castle Rock State Park parking lot, and start down the Saratoga Gap trail (the entrance is about 15 yards to the left of the latrine) for about 200 yards to a side trail which splits off to the left up the hill at a sign post.
Follow the left trail up the hill through a number of switchbacks until you see a the first smaller unmarked trail to the right (there is a log along the right side of the main trail which separates it from the smaller trail and a sign informing you that this is not 'the' trail.) Take this right trail, and if you see a series of nice looking boulders on your left (the largest with a small cavelike formation called The Graveyard Boulders and Pyramid Rock) you have gone too far.
Take the climbers trail for about 100 yards to a moderate clearing (this used to be part of an old road.) There are two small trails (ok, they look more like goat paths than trails) on the far side of the clearing. One leads up and to the right of Chew Tooth Rock, while the other leads down directly to the top of The Underworld. Top ropes for most of the climbs here can be set up from one of 2 sets of bolts accessable from here.
Weather station 4.5 miles from here
8 Total Routes
['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',1],['2 Stars',5],['1 Star',2],['Bomb',0]
Browse More Classics in Underworld Rock
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Underworld Rock:
Hair Dresser 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad, Sport, TR, 1 pitch, 80'
Hit Man 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport, TR, 1 pitch, 70'
Poop Shoot 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Sport, 1 pitch, 60'
Featured Route For Underworld Rock
Hair Dresser 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a CA
: San Francisco Bay
: ... : Underworld Rock
On the severly long and pockety southest face, climb the left side of the slab. Climbing begins in a flakey crack system and then heads directly up the left side of the face. Climbing is simple until the first bolt is reached, which is about 15 feet from the top. Once clipped in, a committing handless slab smear will scare the hell out of a 5.9 leader. The long move is fun, but climbing on the route other than that doesn't get this route any more stars....[more] Browse More Classics in CA
Local Information for Underworld Rock
Latest Regional Forum Messages
By Brian Quiter
From: Oakland, CA
Sep 13, 2004
One minor inconvienence surrounding the Underworld is that almost all climbs share the same anchors atop the rock. That means if another party is there, you've just done the hike for nothing... unless you're creative.
Equalize an anchor with a 6' sling from the tree branch atop the rock and the last bolt of Underpass. With this anchor (as long as you stay right of the other party) you can toprope or lead Poop Shoot and anything right of there.
By Bryan Howell
From: San Francisco, CA
Apr 21, 2008
Is the anchor situation still the same now, in good ol' 2008? Anyone been there recently who can shed some light on this?
By Jennifer H
Aug 3, 2009
Yes, the anchor situation is the same now (in 2009). Luckily this rock doesn't seem to get as much traffic as other areas in Castle Rock.
By Samantha H
Sep 8, 2014
Is rappelling off the top anchor the only way to get to the base of the rock?