Rocky Face Recreational Area Rock Climbing
This sunny rock face was operated as a quarry in the 1920s. In 2013 it opened as a recreational venue operated as a municipal park by Alexander County. Rebolting is ongoing to upgrade aged fixed anchors. THe rock quality is variable and the cliff sheds loose rock regularly. A helmet is advised for climbers and belayers. The park is located on Rocky Face Church Road just outside the town of Hiddenite.
Rocky Face is a man-made crag. A former quarry in the early to mid 1900s. The earliest documentation of the quarry used for climbing or rappelling was in the 1970s. The US Army Reservists 3rd Brigrade, 518 Division out of Hickory used Rocky Face for rappelling training in 1975. Later, a few local climbers would discover the mountain. The ethics then, were strictly traditional, all but one bolt had been put in on lead. This bolt was placed by Ben Dunlap and Terry Wright in a rainstorm, with a hardware store bought drill and a homemade hammer. This was the second bolt they had ever placed. As of 1993, only one route saw the power drill, it was done from the ground up.
With permission from the first ascensionists (local climber, Steve Pope and others), many of the original routes have been retro-bolted for the enjoyment of generations of climbers. As an ongoing process, new routes for all levels of climbing ability are being established, creating even more energy around Rocky Face as a destination for sport and toprope climbing. The Carolina Climbers Coalition (CCC), CCC representative and Rock Dimensions owner, Ryan Beasley; along with locals Johnny OConnell and Travis Mabe have been important partners in helping to establish rock climbing as a major activity of the park.
To learn more about the Park and see a video from UNC TV NC Weekend. video.unctv.org/video/23651437...
From Interstate 40 in Iredell County, travel US 64 West approximately 14 miles. Turn right at stoplight on Millersville Road. Travel one-half mile to stop sign on NC 90 and turn left. Travel one-half mile and turn right on White Plains Rd. Travel to stop sign and turn right on Rocky Springs Road. Travel 1.4 miles and turn left on Rocky Face Church Road. Park is 1.2 miles on right.
From Interstate 40 in Catawba County, travel NC 16 North toward Taylorsville and turn east onto US 64. Travel to stoplight at Millersville Road and turn left.Travel one-half mile to stop sign on NC 90 and turn left. Travel one-half mile and turn right on White Plains Rd. Travel to stop sign and turn right on Rocky Springs Road. Travel 1.4 miles and turn left on Rocky Face Church Road. Park is 1.2 miles on right.
From NC 16 North in Wilkes County, travel NC 16 South toward Taylorsville and turn east onto US 64. (Follow directions above from Millersville Road) From US 64/NC 90 in Caldwell County. Travel east onto US 64. (Follow directions above from Millersville Road)
Weather station 9.1 miles from here
52 Total Climbing Routes
['4 Stars',1],['3 Stars',22],['2 Stars',26],['1 Star',3],['Bomb',0]
Classic Climbing Routes in Rocky Face Recreational Area
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Rocky Face Recreational Area
Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Rocky Face Recreational Area:
Featured Route For Rocky Face Recreational Area
Climbing festival at Rocky Face Park on November 1...
Rock Climbing Festival at Rocky Face Park. FREE. O...
Heading around to the right side of the Main Wall ...
Another view of the Top Rope Buttress and the Uppe...
View of Top Rope Buttress in 2010.
Looking at the Top Rope Buttress from below Gatewa...
The Toprope Buttress in the 80's. Photo credit goe...
Rocky Face Park, (Jan 2014)
By Jeff Jenkins
Jan 18, 2014
Second time there today , the park is very much like an outside gym, top rope and bolted lines even tie down bolts on large rocks on the ground if you bring a light weight belayer. Rounded out with a small pictured kiosk with lines listed and ratings at each area. Climbs actually start at 5.2 and go thru 5.12c so far. The county has hired developers so leave your drills at home all you bolting addicts. Great all day sun so its def a fall, winter, spring destination. There are restrooms , water fountain and covered picnic area , great for family style outings. My hat's tipped to Alexander County , hope all the state follows their example in maximizing all the assets at each individual location. Thanks too to John and Ryan for all their hard work , you guys are doing a great job for generations that you will never see!
By Mike Reardon
Jan 21, 2014
An additional thanks to Mike T and Ron F for getting the ball rolling on this area. Read below from the Access Fund website posted summer 2013.
Carolina Climbers Revive Climbing at Rocky Face
Central North Carolina has a newly opened climbing area, thanks to the work of Carolina Climber's Coalition (CCC) and Boone Climbers Coalition (BCC). "Rocky Face is an old quarry with routes that were developed in the 80s," says Mike Trew, CCC/BCC board member. Last year, Alexander County established the new Rocky Face Mountain Recreational Area, offering hiking, picnicking, and more. They sought out their in-state local climbing organizations for help to open and manage the area's climbing. CCC and BCC representatives jumped at the opportunity, and began an ongoing partnership with the county to promote and steward Rocky Face. Local climbers recently replaced many of the crag's aging fixed anchors, reviving more routes for climbers to enjoy. Rocky Face is about an hour north of Charlotte. A permit is required to climb
By David Gunnells
Aug 6, 2016
I would echo the comment about this being like an outside gym. You practically fall out of your car to the base. Top rope set-ups are accessible and super-quick. The climbs tend to have a lot of sloper grips and pinch grips - due to it being an old quarry I guess.