Ship Rock is located on the Blue Ridge. It offers an excellent selection of routes at all grades, most of which are very high quality and quite protectable. Its northwestern exposure means that it comes into the sun late in the day, making it an excellent spot for the warmer months. Due to its number of excellent moderates and proximity to Appalachian State University, it's pretty popular. The rock is a bomber metamorphic (quartzite?) scored with numbers of awesome horizontals that make great holds and take excellent gear. A "standard Shiprock rack" may consist of a set of stoppers, doubles on cams from 00 TCU-.75 camalot, and singles of #1/2 camalots. See individual descriptions for more info.
Ship Rock is approached via the Rough Ridge parking area on the Blue Ridge Parkway, located ~2 miles north of the Linn Cove Viaduct. From Rough Ridge, walk south down the parkway for 1/3 of a mile. Cross a bridge, pass a roadcut, and look right. A trail should become apparent immediately after the roadcut.
As of 3/7/07, the NPS is closing the clifftop of Shiprock. Everything above Anguish/Harpoon is off-limits, and all descents of the main tier must utilize the Boardwalk rappel. Go to carolinaclimbers.org for more info.
By John Braun From: Hendersonville, NC Nov 5, 2013