Mountain Project Logo

Areas in Boxcar Rocks (Chinese Wall)

Bouldering 0 / 0 / 0 / 4 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 4
Main Wall 12 / 3 / 14 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 19
Elevation: 1,264 ft
GPS: 40.545, -76.536 Google Map · Climbing Map
Page Views: 11,797 total, 104/month
Shared By: Dan Smith on Aug 14, 2008
Admins: Justin Johnsen, Kyle Stapp
Getting weather forecast...


A mixed conglomerate area that has about 7 sport routes and many trad leads. Most routes can be toproped. Beware the rock can be loose and pebbles can break off when you least expect.

Getting There

From the south, east or west: drive (probably via PA 78 or 81) to route 72 north near Swatara township. Follow it through Swatara Gap - crossing the Appalachian Trail - and through Swatara State Park as it becomes route 443 north.

2.1 miles past the 443 north junction, turn left onto Gold Mine Road. Follow it a total of 4.4 miles, over a short, steep mountain pass (Blue Mountain) and a second uphill grade. The pullout will be the largest on your right hand (east) side, with room for several cars to park before the dirt pullout road is blocked by a closed gate.

Park here and walk east past the gates until you reach a burn site - if you're attentive you might see a small wood sign saying "Boxcar Rd" on the left. Continue waling and take the first real trail on the right (southward). This takes you to the back side of the rocks near the "turtles head" (Moby Neil end) on the Main Wall.

The coordinates here are for the Main Wall parking lot.

Directions if driving from the north (I think - please verify, I haven't confirmed this). Heading south on Gold Mine Road, go over the first mountain. Continue down until you pass the rail bed. The pullout is third pullout on the left side.

23 Total Climbs

Route Finder - Best Climbs for YOU!

Location: Boxcar Rocks (Chinese Wall) Change
Type:  to 
Quality: Pitches:
Sort by:   then:

Classic Climbing Routes at Boxcar Rocks (Chinese Wall)

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
More Classic Climbs in Boxcar Rocks (Chinese Wall) »

Weather Averages

Days w Precip
Prime Climbing Season
Lancaster PA
minquatrails   Lancaster PA
BK -

Sorry you had a bad experience. I had the place to myself on a weekday.

Looks like the closure is seasonal. Maybe if you wear blaze orange you can climb there?…

State game lands are public hunting grounds and lawful hunting
and trapping are permitted during open seasons. To enable the
Commission to effectively manage and protect these invaluable
land holdings for this and future generations of hunters, trappers
and wildlife enthusiasts, the following activities are prohibited:

Except on Sundays, to be present on state game lands from Nov. 15
through Dec.15 inclusive when not engaged in lawful hunting or
trapping and fail to wear a minimum of 250 square inches of
fluorescent orange material on the head, chest and back combined,
or, in lieu thereof, a hat of the same colored material. Orange
material must be visible 360 degrees. Persons using shooting ranges
are exempted.

Not sure if those regs only apply to Clinton county or not.

Anyone else have info on this? Nov 25, 2015
Lancaster PA
minquatrails   Lancaster PA
I went here for a day of trad climbing and was not disappointed. The approach is short (<10 minutes) and hauling the large cams (#5,#6) will allow you to sew up the wider cracks. Great crack climbs (especially for PA!). The rock is quite unlike anything I've climbed before. The place gets a good amount of shade so it made climbing in the heat of summer tolerable.

If you go for the trad climbs, be prepared to wander around the top a bit for the bolts. Not all anchors have rap rings.

I didn't try the sport climbing but there seems to be enough for at least a couple of visits and the bolts appeared to be in good shape.

Tired of Safe Harbor's sport & can't get to the Gunks for some EZ/Moderate Trad? Try this place. Sep 1, 2015
Kyle Stapp
Kyle Stapp   Pennsylvania  
Be cautious when setting cams here. To maximize the potential that the cam will do as you want/expect (not walk, move, pop out, hold the fall, etc.) DO NOT place the lobes on the pebbles. When the lobes are placed on the smooth pebbles the cams can sometimes (definitly not always) dislodge the pebbles now making the cam too small or straight up pull the cam out with the pebble. Try and aim for the lobes to sit against the solid stone itself, if possible.

Enjoy this fun place and be mindful that LAW ENFORCEMENT officers do patrol here.

Sep 17, 2013
Paul Brandstetter
Harrisburg PA
Paul Brandstetter   Harrisburg PA
This is navigation from a TomTom you may have to switch the numbers around or use a dash depending on your GPS. Jan 11, 2011

More About Boxcar Rocks (Chinese Wall)

Printer-Friendly Guide
What's New

All Photos Within Boxcar Rocks (Chinese Wall) (39)

Most Popular · Newest