At the Jinping-I hydropower station the excavation height on the slope of the left bank is about 530 m. The stability of the excavated slope is very important because of the complicated geological conditions. To analyse the process of deformation evolution of the left abutment slope during construction, a comprehensive monitoring system was employed, which combined surface deformation observations, multi-point extensometers and graphite rod extensometers. This paper describes this monitoring system and analyses the deformation development with slope excavation. We also established a 3D numerical model of the slope and simulated the whole process of excavation using the finite-difference method. Results from both monitoring and numerical simulation show that the deformation depth in the left bank slope of the Jingping-I hydropower station is over 150 m owing to large-scale excavation unloading, far greater than that of general engineering slopes. The 3D limit equilibrium method and the strength reduction method are applied to evaluate the stability of the excavated slope. The calculated factors of safety indicate that the left abutment slope is stable and safe as a whole, which is in agreement with the deformation monitoring results.