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Areas in Franklin Gorge

Main Wall 2 / 52 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 53
Riverbend 0 / 14 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 14
Access Issue: PRIVATELY OWNED PROPERTY Details

Description

Pockets, Jugs, Rails, Overhanging jugs hauls, Moderate classics and many other awesome things about Franklin are frequently overlooked by everyone in the climbing world except for locals.

Great collection of sports routes here that folks generally use as a local crag, not neccesarily a destination.

Getting There

From Harrisonburg, VA the distance is about 41 miles, driving time is just over an hour.
To reach Franklin: Drive west on Rte 33, through Rawley Springs, into the National Forest and over Shenandoah Mountain, with great views all along the way (about 15 miles to the top of Shenandoah Mtn from Harrisonburg).

Stay on Rte 33 through the small town of Brandywine, making a right turn before passing over a bridge on the way out of town. Watch for deer along this stretch of road near sunset.

Pass through Oak Flats to climb over the next mountain and descend into Franklin, past a welding shop and State Police Headquarters. The Roadside Crag lies along this stretch of road, as well, directly across from Delta Road 31.

2.8 miles after the State Police HQ, slow down as you approach the obvious bridge over the South Fork of the Potomac River, with Kemper's Store on your right. Please patronize this local business, whose owners have always been welcoming to climbers of all types.

Between Kemper's entrance and the bridge is 5|11 River Gap Road (dirt). Turn right. Maximum speed on this road should be about 10 mph- it is narrow and rough, and large 4x4s can appear from the opposite direction.

Follow dirt road to obvious parking, exactly one half mile in. Park in consideration of other parties and traffic. Please do not block the gate going up the mountain, or your car may be towed.

To reach the new trail, new bouldering, and upper walls: Hike up the log/stone steps leading to the "Parking Lot Wall" (Look for pink ribbon tied around a large tree about 8'off the ground.). Head right from here along the new (and still improving) trail. For the River's Bend crags, park as you would for anything else, then hike downstream to where the road ends and continue along the riverbank for another 2/10s of a mile. Coming from Seneca, the Franklin Gorge turn off is one mile east of the town of Franklin on Route 33.

67 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Franklin Gorge

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 62
First Aid
Sport
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 71
Castaways
Sport
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 45
Jump Start
Sport
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 62
Aloha
Sport
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 42
Shipwrecked
Sport
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
 86
Blood, Sweat and Chalk
Sport
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
 26
Anchors Away
Sport
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 29
Aqualung
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 23
Potential Energy
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 29
Bircham's Beach
Sport
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b
 24
Decompression Sickness
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 3
Wish I Were a Fisherman
Sport
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 44
Barnacle Bill
Sport
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 22
Dynosaurus
Sport
5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a PG13
 9
Davey Jones' Locker
Sport
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
First Aid Main Wall > Impact Zone
 62
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Sport
Castaways Main Wall > Impact Zone
 71
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Sport
Jump Start Main Wall > Impact Zone
 45
5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Sport
Aloha Main Wall > Contact Zone
 62
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Sport
Shipwrecked Main Wall > Impact Zone
 42
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Sport
Blood, Sweat and Chalk Main Wall > Impact Zone
 86
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a Sport
Anchors Away Main Wall > Impact Zone
 26
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a Sport
Aqualung Main Wall > Impact Zone
 29
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Potential Energy Main Wall > Contact Zone
 23
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Bircham's Beach Main Wall > Contact Zone
 29
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport
Decompression Sickness Main Wall > Impact Zone
 24
5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Sport
Wish I Were a Fisherman Riverbend
 3
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Barnacle Bill Main Wall > Impact Zone
 44
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Sport
Dynosaurus Main Wall > Contact Zone
 22
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport
Davey Jones' Locker Main Wall > Impact Zone
 9
5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a PG13 Sport
More Classic Climbs in Franklin Gorge »

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J F M A M J J A S O N D
J F M A M J J A S O N D
Wonderful area, thanks so much for taking the effort to put up the climbs. Being an "out-of-towner", I just want to mention that the climbing areas are just east of Franklin before getting into town. If you are used to pumpy and steep climbs then you will be in heaven. Leaving the parking area at the Main Wall, you will find an uphill trail that goes to the Parking Lot Area crag, and after following the trail to the right you will first come to the Contact Zone, then eventually the Impact Zone area. So many more climbs than listed here in Mountain Project Aug 18, 2017
I spoke to a member of the Hammer family today. The previous owner has passed away. The Hammer family owns the property at Franklin Gorge. They were very specific that the climbing area is closed to the general public. That anyone climbing there or parking on the private road is Trespassing. 7 days ago

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