Elevation: 168 ft
GPS: 42.243, -71.034 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 176,493 total · 1,054/month
Shared By: Leo Paik on Jan 13, 2007 · Updates
Admins: Joe M., Old Timer, jim.dangle
Access Issue: COVID-19 Guidelines Details
Access Issue: Please help slow the spread of COVID-19 and do not travel to or climb at this area during this health crisis. SNECC is advising all climbers to follow guidelines set forth by local and state governments, the WHO, the CDC and the Access Fund among others. Details

Description

This is probably the most popular and most extensive climbing area within the Boston area. It lies in Quincy, SE of Boston.

Climbing access here has been eliminated at times. Fortunately, with a collaboration of climbers & non-climbers, the situation has improved and climbing has resumed more recently. Amazingly, some of the quarries have been filled in with dirt. Unfortunately, this has given access to graffitti artists. For those who have not been here since 1991, it is amazing how different it looks. This area has wonderful, compact, granitic rock, variety of routes, and so many variations for the Boston-based climber. Many of these would be considered squeezed but for the lack of better climbing in the area. There are at least 21 faces or craglets to climb here. At one point, this had some of the best Massachusetts routes climbing over water...sadly, no longer. There's a great shot of how it used to be done on p. 152 & 153 of Boston Rocks II. There are routes up to 90 feet tall in some spots.

Toula described it as "over-loved." Some say, love the one you're with.

Historically, parked cars are at greater risk than climbers in this locale. Do not leave anything of any value within your vehicle.

Organization

This is somewhat complicated here. The 1987 Boston Rocks listed these various chunks of rock into faces. The more recent editions of Boston Rock II reorganized these into Walls. There was a subtle shift and a not so subtle shift. Overall, these walls essentially go clockwise Walls A-S, a linear progression with a few wrinkles in the fabric. See the aerial shot just to the right=>

The organization from Boston Rocks is used here. Much thanks to Steve Marr for his help. A, B, C, D, E, F, G, & H faces circle the former Little Railroad Quarry clockwise. The Boston Rocks II wound up calling these A, B, C, D, E, F, & G Walls surrounding the same quarry.

The others are harder to describe in words, especially since they drained Granite Rail Quarry (a very deep quarry) and filled it in with dirt (wow!). Walls I & J aka Faces J & K are around to the right of H.

Faces L, N, P were not above water. Now, Walls J, K, L, M, & N are the northern walls of the quarry area. Faces M, Q, Granite Rail Quarry Face were above water, now there is just dirt. Now, Walls O, P, Q, R, & S continue around as you follow the rock clockwise. Now, S Wall is the N Face.

Swingle's Quarry is on the other side of O & P Walls. Nearby is Badger's & Bunker Hill Quarries.

The
Aerial shot to help orient. may help.

Swimming

Swimming, while tempting on a hot day, was strictly illegal here. Deaths had occurred here. It's no longer an issue for the Granite Rail Quarry. Photos show how the 200 foot deep Granite Rail Quarry has been filled in. It's amazing how deep the quarries once were. Too bad they didn't leave the water & dirt out. Here's an after shot, compare them.

History

Originally, granite quarrying began back in 1825 here. Solomon Willard discovered the stone here was good for building. Stone from this site was used for the Bunker Hill Monument, the Titanic Monument, and others. As a result, Quincy became known as the Granite City. The quarry closed in 1963. Some of the photographs from the preclimbing days may be interesting. The Metropolitan District Commission purchased 22 acres including the quarries here. Now this is under the Department of Conservation and Recreation.

The Friends of the Blue Hills Reservations operate the Quarry Granite Rock Climbing Museum (617) 326-0079.

Weather

You can use the NOAA site.

Other

There are interesting structures nearby from the Granite Railway Incline. There is a monument located for the Granite Railway Quarry. Portion of Railroad bed terminus located at Bunker Hill Lane (nation's first industrial railroad). Some foundational remains of quarry structures include several small powder magazine and the nearby stone-walled, roofless shell of the Quincy owned Lyons Turning Mill. A spider watertower and two microwave towers are nearby.

Getting There

By car: Southeast of Boston, go on Route 3/I-93 South or the Southeast Expressway to exit 8 and the Furnace Brook Parkway, go Southeast on Williard, head West immediately along Riccuti Drive. Park. There have been multiple sites for parking over the years.

By public transportation: Take the Red Line to Quincy Center, take MBTA bus #215 to Copeland and Willard Streets, turn left on Willard, cross under the Expressway and take the first right onto Ricciuti Drive. The quarries are 1/4 mile on the right.

126 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Quincy Quarries

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a
 47
Black Knight
Trad, TR
5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a
 44
White Knight
Trad, TR
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
 28
Double Overhang
TR
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
 5
A Slice of Lime
TR
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 80
Layback
Trad, TR
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 94
Outside Corner
Trad, TR
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 18
Diving Board
TR
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 54
Pins
Trad, TR
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
 42
Tensile Strength
TR
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b PG13
 14
Under the Big Top
Trad, TR
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
 9
Hanging Buttress
TR
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b PG13
 29
The Power of Positive Thinking
Trad, TR
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b PG13
 7
Sloping Staircase
Sport, TR
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 24
Ladder Line
TR
5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a R
 11
Thank You, Scott
Trad, TR
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Black Knight S Wall (aka N Face)
 47
5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a Trad, TR
White Knight S Wall (aka N Face)
 44
5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a Trad, TR
Double Overhang C Wall (aka C Face)
 28
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b TR
A Slice of Lime H Wall (aka J Face)
 5
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b TR
Layback J Wall (aka L Face)
 80
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad, TR
Outside Corner K Wall (aka M Face)
 94
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad, TR
Diving Board Q Wall
 18
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c TR
Pins K Wall (aka M Face)
 54
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad, TR
Tensile Strength K Wall (aka M Face)
 42
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a TR
Under the Big Top H Wall (aka J Face)
 14
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b PG13 Trad, TR
Hanging Buttress M Wall
 9
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b TR
The Power of Positive Thinking K Wall (aka M Face)
 29
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b PG13 Trad, TR
Sloping Staircase Q Wall
 7
5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b PG13 Sport, TR
Ladder Line J Wall (aka L Face)
 24
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b TR
Thank You, Scott Q Wall
 11
5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a R Trad, TR
More Classic Climbs in Quincy Quarries »

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