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Elevation: 454 ft
GPS: 42.59639, -72.44175
Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 101,622 total · 501/month
Shared By: sara pax on Jul 3, 2007 · Updates
Admins: sara pax, Old Timer, jim.dangle, Joe M
Warning Access Issue: Private Property with limited allowed access. Do NOT add routes here. DetailsDrop down

Description Suggest change

Farley Ledges is a large, multiple-outcrop, gneiss crag off of Rt 2 in Erving, MA (nearly to the NH border north of Springfield). All of the climbing is currently located on private property and climbing is allowed by agreement of the landowners. Grades range from 5.4 to 5.13+. Below and all along the cliff there are extensive boulder fields with many enjoyable and challenging problems from V0 to V12.

From the Western Mass Climbers' Coalition website

These southeast facing chain of ledges, like much of the rock in the region, is granitic gneiss.  This stone is characterized by big, sloping horizontals, small edges and sweeping features. At least four waves of route developers have put up a variety of lines spanning the gamut of highball bouldering to committing traditional lines to pumpy sport routes. The climbing is best when friction is the highest. Generally, ideal conditions can be found in spring and fall, although the heavily forested areas provide ample shade on hot summer days.

Farley sees more visitors each year, especially on the weekends and holidays. Plan on seeing other parties. If the the lots are full, consider a visit to Rose Ledges or Mormon Hollow: both are within two miles of Farley and offer more solitude.

In fact, the willingness to climb at a different crag on heavy use days is one big thing individual climbers could do to preserve access to Farley.  Farley has been closed numerous times by landowners disgruntled by our numbers, our behavior or both.  The WMCC was born to deal with the last closure and we have kept it open.  Our purchase of the seven acre plot allowed us to build permanent parking and trail access, but we do not own any of the stone. In other words, we have stabilized – but not guaranteed –  our access to the climbing. Please, tread lightly so we can all come back.

Parking Suggest change

Important: Do not park anywhere on Route 2. You may be ticketed or towed and not following this rule reflects poorly on climbers as a whole to the community of Farly and Town of Erving. 

The following information on parking is from the Western Mass Climbers' Coalition website:

Main Lot: The primary parking area and the trail head directly off of Route 2 is owned by the WMCC. Please park considerately and pay the $5.00 suggested donation at the “iron ranger” or pay through our online donation platform by credit card, PayPal or Venmo. There are options to pay $60 for the whole year or monthly recurring payments. This lot is usually full by 9:00 am on weekends with nice weather, so have a plan B in mind if you will be arriving after 9:00 am. There is a designated accessible parking space in this lot.

Please keep your dog on a leash, especially when in the parking lot. We have heard from the neighbor alongside the parking lot that dogs enter his yard and disturb the peace. Please keep dogs out of private landowners yards to keep our good relationships intact!

Erving Municipal Lot: A few minutes East of Farley, in the center of Erving (near the bright pink Erving Station and the Freight house), is a paved lot owned by the town of Erving. There are several EV chargers. We HIGHLY suggest meeting climbing partners here and carpooling to a closer lot. You can also park here and book a ride on the FRTA, which will take you right up to the Farley lot. Find more info on the FRTA service.

The 8-car lot: Look for Holmes Street (heading west, it’s on the right, heading east, on the left). Drive up Holmes street to Wells Street, take Wells to the end of the pavement, and turn right onto Cross St. Please respect the 8 car limit and don’t park elsewhere in this neighborhood.

Bridge Street: There is a large, privately owned parking lot just over the bridge on the right hand side. Climbers and hikers are welcome to park here! There is a small box where you can put in a $5.00 suggested donation. This donation goes to the private landowner, not to the WMCC.

10 Maple Ave: Local climbers offer a small lot in front of their house at 10 Maple Ave. There is a box for a suggested $5 donation. This donation goes to the land owner, not the WMCC

Where not to park: Anywhere on either side of Route 2 or anywhere that is not designated for parking. If all of these options are full, the crag probably is too!

Approach and Trails

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WMCC map of Farley trails

From the Main Lot (from the WMCC): The main access trail is located beyond the kiosk at the end of the parking lot. From the parking lot, walk north up the hillside to the intersection with the Red Dot trail. Turn right and the trail will wind through the boulder field before it meets the multi-state New England Trail (Metacomet-Monadnock Section) at Briggs Brook. Continue straight ahead and the trail will take you to the Wall of Early Morning Light, the most popular sport climbing wall at Farley. To the left the Red Dot trail continues around the back and ridge of Rattlesnake Mountain which is spectacular 1-1/2 mile hike in it’s own right. Many portions of trail are located on private property so please show your respect. Keep your dogs leashed when visiting Farley Ledge since many of the abutting landowners also have dogs. 

From the 8 Car Lot: The Farley trailhead is on the other side of the Log house from the parking lot, near a waist-high boulder, and with a square post at the trail head with the letters "M-M" painted on it in white. Follow this trail thru the woods (about 1/5th-1/4 mile) until you come to an obvious intersection at the cascades to the nearby stream, surrounding a large, angular boulder. The M-M trail continues off to the right over a wooden bridge, and the Farley (red) trail continues into the woods ahead, across the dirt road heading left, and identified by a metal sign with the words "Farley Ledge" and a left-pointing arrow cut right into the metal.

From the Bridge Street Lot: Walk across the bridge and up to Route 2. Take a left and walk along rt 2 until you find a safe place to cross. Continue to the Main Lot. 

To ensure continued access to Farley, respect for the landowners who have allowed access through their properties is paramount. Please be respectful of their yards and homes when visiting Farley. LNT.

Facilities

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The WMCC provides a Porta Potty in the main lot for most of the year. It may not be there in the late winter or early spring. Please plan accordingly and bring wag bags for emergencies!

Landowners and Guidebooks

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The climbing at Farley is spread across the property of three different private landowners. The Western Mass Climbers' Coalition only owns the Main Lot and part of the approach trail. When you are at Farley please be mindful of this and respectful of the land. Climbing here is a privilege, not a right.

Currently, the WMCC, at the request of property owners, has a NO GUIDEBOOK policy for Farley Ledges. This means that no comprehensive route information for Farley ledges should be posted on-line or otherwise distributed.

Why no Guidebook:

  • All the crags and boulder problems are on private or Power Company managed land.
  • Not having a guidebook was part of the original agreement with landowners to gain climbing access.
  • Very limited parking is currently available and street or highway parking is a source of friction with residents of the area.
  • The Power Company (FirstLight Power Resources) is currently renegotiating the operating license with FERC (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission). Part of this license covers recreational activity on the leased State property and the implications for climbing are yet to be determined.

 

Dogs

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Please keep your dog on a leash, especially when in the parking lot. We have heard from the neighbor alongside the parking lot that dogs enter his yard and disturb the peace. Please keep dogs out of private landowners yards to keep our good relationships intact!

Gold Bolts

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Since there is no guidebook for Farley, a decision was made early on to paint the first bolt on mixed routes gold. If you see a gold bolt on a route, this means there is a section of the route that will require trad gear (and the skill to place it) in order to safely climb to the anchors. For gold bolt routes you should bring a single trad rack (cams/nuts) with you unless you are absolutely sure of the gear beta and that it will work for you. Not bringing the proper gear can result in dangerous run-outs. 

Reporting Anchor or Trail Maintenance Issues to the WMCC

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If you encounter an issue with a bolt anchor or a trail maintenance issue at any Western Mass crag that the WMCC stewards, please let us know about it by filling out this form: Western Massachusetts Hardware Replacement and Crag Maintenance Reporting Form

Non-Liability Policy for Fixed Anchors and Rock Climbing:

"The WMCC shall assist landowners, land managers and other pertinent individuals regarding fixed anchor applications and make recommendations concerning fixed anchors based upon aesthetic and natural resource criteria. The custom and practice in the climbing community is for individual climber members of the community to install and maintain fixed anchors and other hardware. The WMCC itself does not install or maintain any fixed anchors or other hardware and shall make no representations or warranties regarding the safety, reliability, or suitability for use of any fixed anchors or other hardware, currently existing or installed in the future, on any climbing route or otherwise. Moreover, the WMCC shall make no representations or warranties regarding the degree of hazard or danger involved, or lack thereof, on any rock climbing route or access trail."

Night Climbing

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Night climbing has seen a rise in popularity in the last several years, likely a result of the many options we have available to us for high-powered battery operated flood lights. While engaging in this maybe highly appropriate at some secluded crags, it's use in a neighborhood crag like Farley should be kept to the absolute minimum. If you must climb at night with a light, please do so in a place where the lights will be minimally visible from any of the surrounding dwellings. Definitely do not point lights down the hillside towards the houses. If bouldering near the Tweaky Bird/Wave Boulder, please refrain from using lights.

Commercial Guiding

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From the WMCC: Since a portion of Farley Ledge is owned by FirstLight & Power, climbers and other visitors to that land are obligated to follow the rules and regulations established by the Northfield Mountain Environmental & Recreation Center. Part of these regulations include restrictions on the licensed use of their property for professional guiding services. At this time, FirstLight and Northfield Mountain are not interested in allowing licensed use of the cliffs for commercial climbing classes or trips. This is limited to the portion of Farley Ledge owned by FirstLight.  Property owner information can be found on the kiosk at the main trail head.

Falcon Closure

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The WMCC, in accordance to the wishes of Massachusetts Fish and Wildlife and abutting landowners, maintains a voluntary, seasonal closure of selected routes to enable nesting pairs of Peregrine Falcons to hatch and raise their offspring in peace.

The exact parameters of the closure may change from year to year, so please check with the WMCC and obey any posted signs, as these areas are clearly marked.

The closure is in effect from February 15th – June15th every year.

 

Emergencies and First Aid Kits

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The WMCC maintains two first aid kits at Farley Ledges. These are bright orange boxes labeled clearly with "First Aid Kit' on them. These boxes should be used for emergencies purposes only. One first aid kit is located at the main wall below the climb called Madame butterfly. The second first aid kit is located in the Grow Room/Chronic bouldering zone under the low roof of the Ship's Prow boulder. 

Emergency information for Farley is printed on these boxes or can be found at the kiosk. In the event of emergency call 911 or you can contact the town of Erving police or fire departments. 

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