Friday, December 10, 2010

The Scoop on Finding Rock to Climb Near Dahlonega

The following is a part of a series on "Everything You Ever Needed to Know about Dahlonega's Outdoor Sports."

Rock Climbing Mount Yonah
Rock Climbing at Mount Yonah.
Climber: Summer. Photo: Syndah Swails.

The closest real rock climbing to Dahlonega is about 45 minutes away at Mount Yonah in Cleveland.  My wife and I have been there numerous times and have gotten to know the those slabby granite cliffs very well!  Many of the bolted sport routes are very easy and beginner friendly, which is good if you're a beginner, but not so good if you are looking to advance your skills.

In addition to the sport routes, there are a number of multi pitch trad routes, as well as a couple of short 5.12s. As a result, Yonah tends to attract a diverse mix of climbers ranging from the very green to the seasoned trad climbers just looking for some slab climbing.

About an hour and a half from Dahlonega is Currahee Mountain in Toccoa, which offers even more granite slab climbing.  There are actually one or two walls with some near-vertical sport routes, but on the whole Currahee is slab.  Almost all of the routes are bolted, and there are many more routes with medium-high difficulty ratings as compared to Yonah.

As a climber, I've naturally done some bouldering and know how to boulder.  Still, I wouldn't consider myself a "boulderer" as I would much rather be ascending a massive cliff than trying to nail a hard problem again and again only 3 feet off the ground.  But from what I have heard, the bouldering opportunities are far more plentiful in the Dahlonega and greater North Georgia area than are the opportunities for true rock climbing.  Based on what I have heard and read on the internet as well as the chalk I've seen on some of the rocks, the area around the top of Blood Mountain (north of Dahlonega just a few miles) has a large boulder field with problems to be worked.  The access hike to those boulders is several miles long, so a much more popular destination is Rocktown, about 2 hours to the west of Dahlonega.

Dahlonega definitely doesn't have a strong climbing community, but if you are into rock climbing and are planning to move to Dahlonega, rest assured that there are a few opportunities to get your hands full of chalk!


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Greg Heil is the Editor in Chief for He's been writing and publishing online since before blogging existed.

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