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Areas in Shell Pond

Family Wall, The 6 / 4 / 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 10
High Meadow Wall 0 / 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 2
Shell Pond Bouldering 0 / 0 / 0 / 7 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 7
Access Issue: Peregrine Falcons Details
Access Issue: The trails accessing the cliffs are on private property. Details

Description

Shell Pond is overlooked by a group of high-quality, single pitch, south-west facing schist cliffs. It's in a beautiful semi-secluded area located in Stow Maine, east of N. Chatham N.H. and south of Evans Notch. It's surrounded by W.M.N.F but access is through private property, so please be respectful and keep a low profile. There are presently two cliffs developed, the Family Wall and the upper tier of the High Meadow Wall (aka the Main Cliff).

The Family Wall is an 80' steep slab with routes 5.5-5.11 trad and sport. A 60 meter rope will work for top-roping off the cliff's top trees. Descent is a trail on climbers left. Due to low visitor use, some routes could use a wire brush.

The High Meadow Wall (Main Cliff) is vertical to overhanging sport routes in the 5.10-5.12 range. Most of the routes do not go to the top of the cliff, so top-roping is difficult. Routes have 2 bolt anchors, a 60 meter rope will work on most raps, a 70 meter on all (remember to knot your rope ends). Some routes can be climbed on rainy days.
The lower tier has sunny ice climbs in the winter.

Getting There

There are two ways to approach off NH Rt 113, either by Deer Hill Rd (shortest walk but seasonally gated) or by Stone House Rd. They both have road name signs.

Deer Hill Rd approach to Family Wall and High Meadow Wall (Main Cliff):
Drive 30 minutes north from N Conway/Fryeburg toward Evans Notch on Rt 113 to Deer Hill Rd on the right (Summit Achievement sign at road head). Drive 3.8 miles on Deer Hill Rd to a small pull off on the left. Walk 50 yds to start of Shell Pond Trail.

Family Wall approach:
Follow Shell Pond trail for 10-15 minutes until you come to Family Wall's faint climbers trail on your right (there may be a cairn), walk uphill 10 minutes to cliff.

High Meadow Wall (Main Cliff) approach:
Continue on Shell Pond Trail for another 10 minutes and look for a less faint climbers trail on you right. 10 steep minutes uphill to upper tier of cliff. If you come to an ATV bridge over a stream you've walked a little too far.

Stone House Rd approach to Upper Meadow Wall (Main Cliff) and Family Wall:
Continue north on Rt 113 1.1 miles past Bald Face parking lot to Stone House Rd on right (0.9 miles south of Basin Pond road on left). Follow Stone House Rd a short distance and take a right at T intersection. Continue on main road until you reach a gate closure at 1.1 miles and parking lot. Walk past gate toward Stone House. Don't take first Shell Pond Trail on right but continue on road past White Cairn Trail and Stone House Trail on your left to a LARGE field/landing strip on the right side of road near the Stone House. Walk the road in the middle of the field (avoiding the Stone House and being low key) for a beautiful half mile (Upper Meadow Wall will come into sight high on left ridge) until you cross an ATV bridge on Shell Pond Trail.

Upper Meadow Wall (Main Cliff) approach:
Go right after crossing bridge another few minutes to the faint Main Wall climbers trail on you left. A steep 10 minutes uphill brings you to the upper tier. The lower tier looks to have new route potential
.
Family Wall approach:
Continue on Shell Pond trail another 10-15 minutes (left at fork)and look for faint climbers trail on your left. 10 minutes uphill and you're at the Family Wall.

19 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Shell Pond

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
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Photos

FOUND A JACKET ON SHELL POND TRAIL. CALL 207-925-1037. SOME SAID I
SHOULD HAVE LEFT IT THERE, OWNER MAY HAVE RETURNED. iF SO, SORRY.
wANTED TO DO THE RIGHT THING. SEEMED SO WARM TODAY, DIDN'T THINK IT
WOULD HAVE BEEN DROPPED TODAY. Nov 12, 2012
M Sprague
New England
M Sprague   New England  
Any chance the description and directions could get an upgrade? Shell is such a good crag; it deserves it. Not all the routes are in the new Handren guide too, so if they were listed here it would help avoid confusion. I do understand if locals don't want the information out in an attempt to keep it from becoming ghetto though. Oct 3, 2013
John Halupowski
Intervale, N.H.
John Halupowski   Intervale, N.H.
Directions and description have been updated Oct 8, 2014
Stephen Whitney
Topsham, ME
Stephen Whitney   Topsham, ME
Tried to go climbing here today, got stuck on the road, both roads are very muddy and have several inches of snow on them still, they should be both clear in a few weeks. Apr 18, 2018

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