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Vermont Rock Climbing 

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Submitted By: Andy Laakmann on Nov 27, 2006  with updates from Max Forbes and 1 more
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Seasonal Raptor Closures 2016 For access issues: please review MORE INFO >>>


Many out-of-state climbers ask: "Is there climbing in Vermont?" My first temptation is to say "no", or "yes, but it's all on private property, and can't be climbed anyway, so it's useless to even try."

But realistically, Vermont has a long and storied history of bold first ascents and adventure climbing, that includes such pioneers as Fritz Weissner, John Bouchard, and Russ Clune. The Green Mountain State houses a large variety of climbing and bouldering on state and private land. And much of the outlying access issues that remain have been, or are in the process of, being smoothed out thanks to the tireless work of our local grassroots access group, Crag-VT ( Still, rock climbing in our state has its fair share of sensitive issues, so care must always be taken if ever there is doubt.

Be it schist, granite, limestone, or ice--Vermont has it all. Climbing ranges from thuggishly-steep to thin and technical, and from short bolted lines in Bolton Valley, to multi-pitch adventure climbing in the Northeast Kingdom and Smugglers' Notch State Park.
The climate and topography of Vermont offers visiting climbers a chance to sample a bit of everything, so long as you have a broad sense of adventure, don't mind getting be-knighted from time-to-time, and regularly like climbing in the face of adversity (read: Scottish weather.) Once past those minor hurdles (and after you drink the Kool-Aid!), you will, no doubt, find great pleasure in all that Vermont climbing has to offer.

Getting There 

Because our climbing is quite spread out, please refer to the area index for the best directions to the location you want to visit.


Northern Vermont

Central Vermont

Southern Vermont

Climbing Season

For the All Locations area.

Weather station 3.3 miles from here

596 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',58],['3 Stars',251],['2 Stars',227],['1 Star',55],['Bomb',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Vermont

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Vermont:
Mindbender   WI5+     Trad, Ice, 1 pitch, 225'   Lake Willoughby : Mount Pisgah
Hidden Gully   WI3-4     Trad, Ice, 3 pitches, 650'   Smugglers Notch Ice climbin... : 10W - The Blind Fate Area
Glass Menagerie   WI5     Trad, Ice, 2 pitches   Lake Willoughby : Mount Pisgah
Crazy Diamond   WI4+     Trad, Ice, 2 pitches   Lake Willoughby : Mount Pisgah
Blue Room   WI3-4     Trad, Ice, 1 pitch, 160'   Smugglers Notch Ice climbin... : 13E - The South Wall Area
Last Gentleman   WI5     Trad, Ice, 4 pitches, 500'   Lake Willoughby : Mount Pisgah
Ragnarock   WI4+ M4     Trad, Mixed, Ice, 3 pitches, 400'   Smugglers Notch Ice climbin... : 08E - Elephant's Head Area
The Fin   V2- 5+ PG13     Boulder, 20'   Top of the Notch Boulders : B.F.B.
Primate   V3 6A     Boulder   Top of the Notch Boulders : Backyard Boulder
Pac-Man   V3 6A     Boulder   Boulders Behind the Main Pa... : Pac Man Boulder
The Impossible Problem   V8 7B     Boulder   Top of the Notch Boulders : Backyard Boulder
Family Picnic   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13     Sport, 2 pitches, 150'   The Main Cliff : B. Middle Cliff Routes
Center Crack   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   Deer Leap
Chockstone (aka:Captain's Crack)   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   Upper West : Upper Tier - Right End
Harvest Moon   5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b R     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 80'   Bolton Area : Lower West Bolton
Hush, Mama Thrush   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 1 pitch, 90'   Bolton Area : Lower West Bolton
The Rose   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   Upper West : North End
The Politics of Dancing   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a PG13     Sport, 1 pitch, 160'   82 Crag : 82 Main Wall
The Thorn   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Trad, 1 pitch, 60'   Upper West : North End
The Doggfather   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 65'   82 Crag : 82 Steep Wall
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Vermont

Featured Route For Vermont
Rock Climbing Photo: Jess high on Dr. Dias

Dr. Dias 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a  VT : Bolton Area : ... : Upper Tier - Right End
Fantastic pitch! Nice exposure and handcrack high up on a bottomless arete. Good trad sections and bolts where you need em'. Start on Birch Tree corner and break right about 50' up at a line of 3 bolts on an awesome face. Follow this to a sweet crack and an awesome stemming finish! ...[more]   Browse More Classics in VT

Local Information for Vermont
Apr 25 2016 Spring Peregrine Cliff Closures 0

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By Nick Goldsmith
From: Pomfret VT
Aug 28, 2011
The Deer leap webguide is back up. It is still badly out of date and needs corrections that neither Isa or I have time to do right now.. There are a bunch of new shorter spurt climbs down low and to the right as well as a few left of the lower tier mostly put up by Bob Gilito. Looks like Nick Hall freed Bag o tricks @ 10+ the Parking lot slab 5.5 is a good mixed beginner lead and just left of the approach trail right near the parking lot.
By Christian Prellwitz
From: Telluride, CO
Oct 26, 2011
anybody ever checked out these boulders? looks interesting...

scroll down to the bottom- 'Creature Rock'
By Derek Doucet
Jul 26, 2012
Vermont's first rockclimbing guidebook is ready to ship in about a week. You can get them here:!
By TravisNE
Aug 4, 2012
Just got back from Creature Rock ( There are a lot of potential lines to be sent, let me know if anyone is up for cleaning some rock and putting up lines.
By balzano
Sep 18, 2012
Does anybody know if there are any lines up the chin at Camel's Hump. I hiked the Alpine trail up and there appeared to be an easy gully line and then some challenging possibilities on the steeper areas.
By balzano
Sep 18, 2012
I answered my Camel's Hump question already... sort of. I read the specific rules on the hand out sheet you get at the trailhead, also available online, and it says rock climbing is forbidden. My assumption is that they want the alpine zone undisturbed outside of the trail itself. My rebuttal is, the area with potential climbing is 100% exposed rock, and once topping out one can probably rock hop back over to the trail with minimal difficulty---if no rope is used, and one scrambles up the easy gully, is that the "rock climbing" they have in mind? I suppose my question is now this: "Are you required to stay on the trails at all times above the tree line at Camel's Hump?" I don't want to disturb anything I am not supposed to, but I don't want to miss out on an awesome little line either.
By Derek Doucet
Sep 19, 2012
Hey Balzano,

The summit area of Camel's Hump is one of only three areas of arctic / alpine tundra in the entire state. Please, please respect the guidelines the GMC and state naturalists have outlined and stay on the trail in these areas. Just because there is little obvious to you that might be impacted by scrambling doesn't mean it isn't there.


By edennis
Feb 16, 2014
I just saw the comment a few years back about creature rock in the Grafton area. I live nearby and am wondering if anything has happened at the site since the last post? Any climbing going on there? I'm curious to check it out.
By Dylan B.
Feb 21, 2014
Has anyone explored the area around White Rocks for bouldering? I would expect there might be something off the Hartsboro Road or Ice Beds Road.
From: St. Paul, MN
Sep 25, 2015
FYI to any rock-starved Vermont climbers: while hiking on the Long Trail this summer I noticed some pretty good quality rock on Laraway Mountain (which is near Waterville and Belvidere). There were four separate tiers that you pass when walking along the trail, with the lowest tier being probably the best. It looked like it would be best for sport--most of it was about 10-20 degrees overhanging, not huge amounts of places for gear. Googling "Laraway cliffs" shows you a few photos, though I thought the crag looked better in real life than it does in any of the photos!

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