Elevation: 1,233 ft
GPS: 40.928, -77.347 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 2,944,250 total · 17,972/month
Shared By: jeremyadams on Jan 28, 2007
Admins: Justin Johnsen, William Sonoma, SCPC

Description

P-A, the Keystone State, is home to a variety of cragging, whatever your style. But it's the bouldering on diabase, gritstone and sandstone that are world class. While the diabase areas are well documented (mainly because they are in the eastern part of the state where all the people are) - the gritstone bouldering in western PA is somewhat unknown and OUT OF THIS WORLD! Think Coopers Rock is a good gritstone area? There are at least 3 gritstone areas in PA that beat Coopers in terms of concentration, number of problems and quality of climbs. Haven't climbed on gritstone? Well there is a reason it's called "God's own rock." Climb a bunch on gritstone and it will ruin you for all other rock types. Yosemite granite? Piece of crap. The unreal friction for your feet and hands and beautiful classic shapes on gritstone yield the most amazing fun (or frustrating) sequences you will ever climb on rock. PA probably has more gritstone than bloody England. Why doesn't anyone know about it? Well no one lives in west central PA and for the lucky few of us who have discovered this stuff we've been too busy putting up climbs and finding new gems to bother documenting.

For roped climbing, there are many worthwhile local areas tucked into Penn's Woods.

The largest sport crags in eastern Pennsylvania are Birdsboro Quarry and Safe Harbor, both bolted on man-made post-industrial rock cuts. In the western half of the state, the Lost Crag offers the most clip-and-climbs.

Toprope and trad tends to be single pitch, on cliffs eroded on the sides of rivers. Some of the tallest routes in the state are on Mount Minsi in the Delaware Water Gap.

Ice climbing can be found, often on waterfalls, mostly scattered through the northern half of the state. The number and quality of ice climbs is highly dependent on the weather that year. Some predictable ice forms every year at the Narrows and Ricketts Glen (hikebikeclimb offers Penn ice beta).

The rock varies from sticky gritstone and conglomerate, exquisite sandstone, and crisp quartzite, to some overused polished choss and loose machine-cut walls.

When neighborhood crags get old, PA is close enough for weekend road trips to the Gunks, the New and the Red.

As a Mid Atlantic state, Pennsylvania gets hot and muggy summers and somewhat cold winters. Despite the cities' stereotypes, Pennsylvania gets more rain on average than Seattle. Luckily Pennsylvania sees far more sunny days than the Pacific Northwest, so things dry out pretty fast after a downpour.

All the rain grows lush forests and undergrowth, including poison ivy - some of it ridiculously large by late summer. Remember, "leaves or three, let it be."

The only poison snakes are Timber Rattlesnakes, who usually have the good manners to warn before striking, and Copperheads, who don't. Both are common but not frequently seen throughout the state.

Many crags here are on or near State Game Lands. Find out when hunting season is before you go there, and wear orange during deer season (or find another place to climb).

Discuss Pennsylvania climbing, or post partner calls, in the Eastern States forum.

The ongoing discussion of PA crack!

2,769 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Pennsylvania

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
 75
(9) Eclipse
Sport, TR
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 173
Itching to Climb
Sport
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 138
Orange Sunshine
Sport
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 100
Public Service
Sport
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
 80
Virgin Suicides
Sport 2 pitches
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
 113
Mental As Anything
Sport
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
 116
Safe Harbor Direct
Sport
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 81
Face O Meter
Sport
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 122
Jenga
Sport
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 74
Locomotion
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 120
Autumn Arch
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 95
Electric Co.
Sport
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
 82
Jay's
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 72
Hydroman
Sport
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 70
Laid Back and Well Hung
Sport
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
(9) Eclipse Southwestern Hi… > Breakneck > Main Wall
 75
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b Sport, TR
Itching to Climb Southeastern Lo… > Birdsboro Quarry > a. Main Wall
 173
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Sport
Orange Sunshine Southeastern Lo… > Birdsboro Quarry > b. Orange Sunshine Wall
 138
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Sport
Public Service S Central PA > … > Safe Harbor South > c Electric Co. Sector
 100
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Sport
Virgin Suicides Southeastern Lo… > Birdsboro Quarry > i. Sun Wall (Long Slabs)
 80
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a Sport 2 pitches
Mental As Anything S Central PA > … > Safe Harbor South > k. Hydroman Sector
 113
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a Sport
Safe Harbor Direct S Central PA > … > Safe Harbor South > c Electric Co. Sector
 116
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a Sport
Face O Meter Southeastern Lo… > Birdsboro Quarry > d. Zorro Wall
 81
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Jenga Southeastern Lo… > Birdsboro Quarry > d. Zorro Wall
 122
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Locomotion S Central PA > … > Safe Harbor South > g. Autumn Arch Sector
 74
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Autumn Arch S Central PA > … > Safe Harbor South > g. Autumn Arch Sector
 120
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Electric Co. S Central PA > … > Safe Harbor South > c Electric Co. Sector
 95
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Jay's Southeastern Lo… > Birdsboro Quarry > b. Orange Sunshine Wall
 82
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Hydroman S Central PA > … > Safe Harbor South > k. Hydroman Sector
 72
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Laid Back and Well Hung Southeastern Lo… > Birdsboro Quarry > f. Big Wall
 70
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Sport
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