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Blue Ridge Parkway

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Across The Road Boulders 
Albright Trail Boulders 
Dripping Rock Overlook 
Forest, The 
Greenstone Overlook 
Humpback Rock Picnic Area 
Love Gap  
Mile 47.5 Pull off 
Mile Post 6.25 Crag 
Mile Post 6.5 
Mile Post 6.6 Crag 
Mile Post 7 
NPS Crag  
Old Howardsville Turnpike 
Raven's Roost 
Roadside Boulder 
Twenty Minute Cliff 
Weather Ball Boulders 

Blue Ridge Parkway Rock Climbing 

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Page Views: 17,935
Administrators: Jake Jones, Shawn Heath, Aaron Parlier, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Andrew Cassidy on Mar 24, 2011  with updates from Andrew Cassidy and 1 more

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Jon Hamilton 12.2 Boulder, Blue Ridge Parkway Beta...


This page is for the first 30 miles of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Long known for it's great traditional and top rope climbing at Love Gap (contains cliffs up to 200 feet with a few multi-pitch routes) and Raven's Roost, respectfully, the Parkway came in vogue again when the father son pair Barry and Brendan Condron went looking for bouldering potential at The Forest based on an old area. The area turned out to be a gold mine. After sharing the information with other Charlottesville climbers, development of the parkway's greenstone bouldering entered a golden age. Most of the rock is only a short hike off the parkway with some of it such as the 12.2 boulder being essentially on the road.

Taken from
Most of the rock in the first 25 miles or so on the parkway is greenstone. Greenstone, more specifically greenschist, is the metamorphic child of basalt, but can climb a bit like sandstone at times. Greenstone can be a bit soft and fragile at times, but at others very solid. Greenstone has a lot of sharp edges and flakes on it, and can be painful to climb on at times. It may not sound that great from the way I'm describing it, and there are a lot of boulders that are just as bad as it sounds, but we've been very lucky and found many boulders that are solid and not too sharp. Greenstone definitely isn't the prettiest or most solid rock I've ever seen, but I'm certainly not about to complain about having so much of it so close. For more information on greenschist, you can read the Wikipedia page on it:

On some spots on the parkway, bands of Old Rag Granite run through. As the name implies, this is the same rock that you will find when climbing or hiking on Old Rag. Old Rag granite is very featured and grainy/sharp, but is generally fairly solid to climb on.

Parkway Bouldering Guides and videos

Love Gap Guide

Climbing Season
The parkway can be climbable all year. Love Gap is south facing and offers from great winter-time trad. The Forest is generally 10 degrees cooler than the city of Charlottesville, so even on 90 degree days you can be climbing in 80 degrees. If we have a mild winter, the parkway is PRIME. However, the roads get closed for snow. Check the link below to see if the roads are open.

Getting There 

Best access from Rockfish Gap/Afton Mountain... and head south on Blue Ridge Parkway.

Climbing Season

For the All Locations area.

Weather station 5.0 miles from here

104 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',12],['3 Stars',23],['2 Stars',44],['1 Star',14],['Bomb',1]

Classic Climbing Routes in Blue Ridge Parkway

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Blue Ridge Parkway:
Life After Greenstone   V9 7C     Boulder, 20'   The Forest : Greenstonia (Ridgeline)
The Seance   V9 7C     Boulder, 16'   AVO : The Seance Area
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Blue Ridge Parkway

Featured Route For Blue Ridge Parkway
Rock Climbing Photo: The juiciest line on the parkway

Life After Greenstone V9 7C  VA : Blue Ridge Parkway : ... : Greenstonia (Ridgeline)
SDS in the left corner of the large overhang that is somewhat up an arete. Move up the steepest part of the rock moving left at the top. SPOILERS: this was done in a kneepad. It probably isn't necessary, but that's the beta right now. This is in between the greenstone roof and greenstone grease....[more]   Browse More Classics in VA

Photos of Blue Ridge Parkway Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Parker Reed 12.2 Boulder, Blue Ridge Parkway Beta ...
Parker Reed 12.2 Boulder, Blue Ridge Parkway Beta ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Jon Hamilton 12.2 Boulder, Blue Ridge Parkway Beta...
Jon Hamilton 12.2 Boulder, Blue Ridge Parkway Beta...
Rock Climbing Photo: Emma Walker 12.2 Boulder, Blue Ridge Parkway Beta ...
Emma Walker 12.2 Boulder, Blue Ridge Parkway Beta ...
Rock Climbing Photo: pedlar district
pedlar district
Rock Climbing Photo: Life After Geenstone (V9). A king line of the park...
Life After Geenstone (V9). A king line of the park...
Rock Climbing Photo: parkway apples
parkway apples
Rock Climbing Photo:
Rock Climbing Photo: Humpback Rock
Humpback Rock
Rock Climbing Photo: View from '20 Minute Cliff' overlook
View from '20 Minute Cliff' overlook
Rock Climbing Photo: View from near Dripping Rock Overlook
View from near Dripping Rock Overlook

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By Andrew Cassidy
Apr 23, 2013

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