North Carolina and Kentucky (throughout September '17)


Original Post
Francesca Parratt · · England · Joined Jun 2017 · Points: 30

Hi,

I'm visiting from England and am hoping to get as much climbing as possible done in my spare time. I will be based near Table Rock, NC for the most of my stay and hope to head out to Red River Gorge, KY for a couple of days at some point (I've heard wonderful things).

I'm mostly a sport climber but have been dabbling in trad recently. A competent second, but I'm hoping my location whilst in the US is also going to force me out of my comfort zone and start leading a lot more trad.

Happy to belay on anything, will most likely be leading around 5.9-low 5.10s sport and lower leads on trad.

Also have no idea on how many nuts/ cams/ hexes I can get into my suitcase before the airline weight limit is reached! Can also trade cups of tea and cadburys for belays (if requested in advance)!

Francesca

Ryan Creed · · Austin · Joined Nov 2016 · Points: 0

Hi Francesca! I'm 100% certain I'll be looking for partners throughout the time you will be visiting. I recently moved here to Greenville SC from Texas and I'm absolutely loving the trad climbing NC has to offer! Have a rack and a 50m rope but would need a second rope to make the rappels at most places. I have not made it out to red river gorge yet and i'm not opposed to making a trip out there! Fairly flexible schedule to allow for travel/camping/multi-day trips.  

Francesca Parratt · · England · Joined Jun 2017 · Points: 30

Awesome, I'll definately be packing a 60m rope, and plenty of draws, just got to work out how much rack I can pack!

Been ogling some climbs in both the Red River Gorge guidebook and the North Carolina one. Should be getting my schedule pretty soon which will determine times I'll be able to climb/ take longer trips.

AField · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2011 · Points: 25

There's a good community of climbers in Burke County, and around the Linville Gorge. Hit us up when you get here!

Francesca Parratt · · England · Joined Jun 2017 · Points: 30
AField wrote:

There's a good community of climbers in Burke County, and around the Linville Gorge. Hit us up when you get here!

Will be sure to do so. Are there many indoor gyms around NC, I've been prewarned of rain days!

Andrew AJ Jackson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2016 · Points: 0

If you're in that area I hope that Linville Gorge  becomes your gym! There are gyms in all the major cities, Raleigh, Charlotte, Greensboro and Asheville. Another option, depending on where you are located, is an outdoor area called Rocky Face. I'm only recommending it because it would be a good place to get a gym like workout in, but in and outdoor setting. I would not go out of your way to visit it but if you're in the neighborhood it's worth a go. This area is all bolted. Another  good option in the Northern Piedmont region of North Carolina for sport would be Pilot Mountain. If it is  a particularly warm day you have the option of Moore's wall traditional climbing for cooler temperatures that is in the same mountain range. Google the Carolina climbers coalition for more information on NC climbing. Depending on how much time you have for travel, the surrounding states of Tennessee, Kentucky, West Virginia and Virginia all have their own gem quality rocks to climb! I hope you have a great time in the states.

AField · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2011 · Points: 25
Francesca Parratt wrote:

Will be sure to do so. Are there many indoor gyms around NC, I've been prewarned of rain days!

Yes, in Asheville, Charlotte, and Boone. The closest really depends on where you are exactly, but there as many sunny days as wet days, and the rock is plentiful. 

Francesca Parratt · · England · Joined Jun 2017 · Points: 30
Andrew AJ Jackson wrote:

If you're in that area I hope that Linville Gorge  becomes your gym! There are gyms in all the major cities, Raleigh, Charlotte, Greensboro and Asheville. Another option, depending on where you are located, is an outdoor area called Rocky Face. I'm only recommending it because it would be a good place to get a gym like workout in, but in and outdoor setting. I would not go out of your way to visit it but if you're in the neighborhood it's worth a go. This area is all bolted. Another  good option in the Northern Piedmont region of North Carolina for sport would be Pilot Mountain. If it is  a particularly warm day you have the option of Moore's wall traditional climbing for cooler temperatures that is in the same mountain range. Google the Carolina climbers coalition for more information on NC climbing. Depending on how much time you have for travel, the surrounding states of Tennessee, Kentucky, West Virginia and Virginia all have their own gem quality rocks to climb! I hope you have a great time in the states.

I will be based near Morganton, right by Linville Gorge, so I'm hoping to mostly be climbing around there. Any sport would also be great.

Aiming to get the Red River Gorge for some sport too.

Hit me up and we can rope up if you like. 

Francesca Parratt · · England · Joined Jun 2017 · Points: 30
AField wrote:

Yes, in Asheville, Charlotte, and Boone. The closest really depends on where you are exactly, but there as many sunny days as wet days, and the rock is plentiful. 

Near Linville Gorge and Morganton.

Hopefully there's less rain than England though!

Brian L. · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Feb 2016 · Points: 0

Feel free to let me know when/if you head to KY. Especially if you're interested in getting on some moderate trad.

AField · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2011 · Points: 25
Francesca Parratt wrote:

Near Linville Gorge and Morganton.

Hopefully there's less rain than England though!

Really it depends on the season. Summer is rainy enough, but fall tends to be a bit drier. There's a solid core group of climbers around here, so you shouldn't want for partners. From Motown its 6.5 hours to the Red,  ~3 hours to the New, and an hour from downtown to any trailhead for Linville Gorge. Sport climbing is scattered around the area, most of the crags are about an hour from town. When do you head in to town?

Derrick Keene · · Kentucky · Joined Apr 2017 · Points: 90

I live near the Red and am there with my wife most weekends. If you need a partner let me know

Brian Abram · · Celo, NC · Joined Oct 2007 · Points: 228

For sport climbing nearish Morganton, check out Upper Creek Falls (30 min), Hawksbill (45 min), Black Fork (50 min), Little Wilson (50 min), The Dump (55 min), and Rocky Face Recreation Area (60 min). Many easy trad routes at Table Rock (60 min) are done on mostly bolts

For the two areas I listed that are not yet on Mountain Project, Upper Creek Falls, and Black Fork, I am happy to provide directions. Upper Creek Falls has two small areas of climbing, mostly in the 5.10-5.12 range. Black Fork has an ton of heavily bolted lines at low to mid grades on variable rock quality

Rumbling Bald (60 min) has some sport climbing, but it is generally not that concentrated

Andrew AJ Jackson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2016 · Points: 0

Francesca, I'll send you a friend request. Brian Abram, I am unfamiliar with Upper Creek Falls, if you are comfortable sharing information about that area I would love to hear more about it.

Brian Abram · · Celo, NC · Joined Oct 2007 · Points: 228

Upper Creek Falls parking area is just south of Gingercake Acres on 181. There is a loop trail to the falls out of either side of the parking lot. Not far from the parking lot (I'm sorry I forget which direction without seeing it), there is a spur trail off the main trail that heads toward some rocks. You will pass under a very steep rock with some trad lines in it. Then there is a small wall with maybe 10 short sport routes.

Farther down the main trail, nearer the falls and river, the trail passes right beside a steep buttress with half a dozen quality lines on it. The most well known route there is a hard .12 (c or d?) that starts far right and sorta traverses up left and up to a crux in a big arching dish-like thing that sorta reminds me of Rotator Cuff at Rumbling Bald.

Francesca Parratt · · England · Joined Jun 2017 · Points: 30

All this climbing, super excited now!

Andrew AJ Jackson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2016 · Points: 0

Thanks Brian,  I will have to check this out. 

Matt Westlake · · Durham, NC · Joined Jul 2009 · Points: 528

It's really hot right now but hopefully things will cool off to just "hot" and be a bit more normal before long (although maybe that is about when the humidity will kick in). I'd suggest Ship Rock near Boone as a good higher elevation alternative too, although it's mostly trad with some TR possibilities. When it's overcast or before the sun has crossed directly overhead it's a great place to be in the hot months. Hawksbill is higher elevation too, although the hike in is a little long.

Trying to imagine just how how Rocky Face will be right now with it being in the high 90s! I went on a warm day (80s?) in Oct and on some of the routes the rock was almost too hot to touch. :)   I would also avoid Stone Mountain and a lot of the other big slab mountains for the same reason. 

That said, NC has plenty of great climbing options - the Circus Wall area at Moore's is good trad climbing that stays cooler and the amphitheater area is decent too before the sun hits in the afternoon. 

(ps - hope you are doing well AJ!)

Andrew AJ Jackson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2016 · Points: 0

Matt, you are right, Rocky Face on a warm day would not be advised. It has also gained in popularity over the last few seasons so you would be well advised to stay away on beautiful weekends. It has easy top rope access with no hike in which invites the masses. I'm doing well Matt, I hope you are. Let's get together sometime.

Brian Payst · · Carrboro,NC · Joined Jan 2014 · Points: 0

Hidden Valley in Virginia is a lot closer than the Red and has a lot of sport routes. It’s about as high as Ship Rock and a good summer crag as well. Being based in Morganton, you should definitely make the most of the local areas and the gorge can keep you busy for a lifetime. Welcome to NC and enjoy!

Punter Brewster · · Chattanooga, TN · Joined May 2009 · Points: 55

If you're considering driving as far as the Red, I'd recommend going to the New River Gorge. It's a much more bearable place to climb in July/August and the most amazing bullet hard sandstone you'll ever see in the states.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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