Blue Ridge Parkway Climbing
|GPS:||37.869, -79.059 Google Map · Climbing Area Map|
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|Shared By:||Andrew Cassidy on Mar 24, 2011|
|Admins:||Aaron Parlier, Jake Jones, Shawn Heath|
DescriptionThis page is for the first 30 miles of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Long known for it's great traditional and top rope climbing at Love Gap (contains cliffs up to 200 feet with a few multi-pitch routes) and Raven's Roost, respectfully, the Parkway came in vogue again when the father son pair Barry and Brendan Condron went looking for bouldering potential at The Forest based on an old rockclimbing.com/routes/Nor… area. The area turned out to be a gold mine. After sharing the information with other Charlottesville climbers, development of the parkway's greenstone bouldering entered a golden age. Most of the rock is only a short hike off the parkway with some of it such as the 12.2 boulder being essentially on the road.
Taken from blueridgebouldering.com/
Most of the rock in the first 25 miles or so on the parkway is greenstone. Greenstone, more specifically greenschist, is the metamorphic child of basalt, but can climb a bit like sandstone at times. Greenstone can be a bit soft and fragile at times, but at others very solid. Greenstone has a lot of sharp edges and flakes on it, and can be painful to climb on at times. It may not sound that great from the way I'm describing it, and there are a lot of boulders that are just as bad as it sounds, but we've been very lucky and found many boulders that are solid and not too sharp. Greenstone definitely isn't the prettiest or most solid rock I've ever seen, but I'm certainly not about to complain about having so much of it so close. For more information on greenschist, you can read the Wikipedia page on it: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Green…
On some spots on the parkway, bands of Old Rag Granite run through. As the name implies, this is the same rock that you will find when climbing or hiking on Old Rag. Old Rag granite is very featured and grainy/sharp, but is generally fairly solid to climb on.
Parkway Bouldering Guides and videos
Love Gap Guide
The parkway can be climbable all year. Love Gap is south facing and offers from great winter-time trad. The Forest is generally 10 degrees cooler than the city of Charlottesville, so even on 90 degree days you can be climbing in 80 degrees. If we have a mild winter, the parkway is PRIME. However, the roads get closed for snow. Check the link below to see if the roads are open.
Classic Climbing Routes at Blue Ridge Parkway
Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
Days w Precip
Prime Climbing Season