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First Trip to NRG, recommendations for crags and climbs?

Original Post
Arthur Ding · · Baltimore, MD · Joined Jan 2016 · Points: 20

Hey folks, I'm heading down to the New for the first time soon (I realize it's gonna be pretty hot there). The group I'm going with will probably be focused on moderate sport routes, possibly easy trad. Anyone have recommendations for areas, crags, or routes? I've been thinking about Whippoorwill, Kaymoor Slabs, Bubba City (slightly scared of potential choss here?), Orange Oswald Wall (or generally Summerville Lake). Thanks all!

Jordan Duncan · · Norwalk, OH · Joined Feb 2018 · Points: 53

For easy to moderate trad the Bridge Area has great climbs with fantastic views! I didn’t see anyone else there when I visited a couple weekends ago. 

Eric Angel · · Fincastle, VA · Joined Jan 2016 · Points: 131

Lake levels will put  Whippoorwill out.  Kaymoor Slabs get a lot of sun so it will be really hot to climb there until fall. Bubba City has decent tree cover so you can find some stuff there. Stuff at Bubba may not be a pretty as other areas, but I wouldn't call it choss. Summersville has shaded routes as well. Kaymoor and Butchers Branch are mostly shaded for most of the day. 

Gumby King · · Los Angeles, CA · Joined Jun 2016 · Points: 25

Is Whippoorwill flooded for most of the climbs now?

Robert P · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2018 · Points: 5

We went to Sandstonia (Bubba City) in late June and had the place pretty much to ourselves on a Tuesday afternoon.  Plenty of shade and not particularly chossy. Went later the same week, either Thursday or Friday and there were two parties of three there - this was on the Butterfly Flake side - and still managed to hop on climbs without any waiting or issues. Just my $0.02, as I’m not from the area and this was our first visit. Not much trad though 

Eugenel Espiritu · · PA · Joined May 2015 · Points: 1,089
Cory F wrote: Is Whippoorwill flooded for most of the climbs now?

Access would be difficult and not worth it for the few that would be above The water line. Many of the classics are DWS if you have access to a boat. 

Seconding kaymoor because it’s east facing. Get ready to sweat.
Eric Chabot · · Salt Lake City, UT · Joined Jul 2011 · Points: 45

NRG is pretty limited for sport below 5.11 so it depends what you mean by moderate

Jake Jones · · Richmond, VA · Joined Jul 2011 · Points: 1,794
Arthur Ding wrote: Hey folks, I'm heading down to the New for the first time soon (I realize it's gonna be pretty hot there).
Perhaps, but in addition to chasing shade at some areas, there are also other ways to mitigate temperature- being next to the lake, going really early, or getting a late start and staying close to sunset.
 The group I'm going with
If you can, try to break the group up.  If you have competent leaders, attach a couple people with each one and get on different routes.  I say this not only because it's a polite gesture that will allow maximum sharing of routes, but also because the areas that you're going to are likely to be crowded, and breaking up into smaller groups will allow more people to get on more routes in YOUR group.  
 will probably be focused on moderate sport routes, possibly easy trad
That depends on your definition of "easy" and "moderate".    
 Anyone have recommendations for areas, crags, or routes? 
There are some areas that are chock full of easy trad, like Moon Wall at Lower Meadow, and Star Trek Wall at Fern Buttress, but there aren't a whole lot of bolted options at either place.  Lower Meadow Tan Wall has a bunch of short, moderate bolted routes and a little further in, there's a whole wall at Toxic Hueco that is pretty much stacked with well-protected gear lines from 5.7 to 5.9 and stays in the shade until early afternoon.

If you are competent in setting up a top rope anchor on two bolts from above, Junkyard and Bridge Buttress areas are good options to climb things that would otherwise deter you because of commitment level or difficulty- but at these areas, try to defer to leaders if at all possible.  In other words, if you have a group of ten top roping a classic 5.10 trad route and a party of two is eyeballing it, it would be polite to let them cut in and lead/clean it quickly- but that's also a judgement call and not a strict rule or anything.
I've been thinking about Whippoorwill
Still under water and usually is until at least the end of Sept/beginning of Oct.
, Kaymoor Slabs
Good choice, but I would go early early, or show up late and catch them as the sun is setting if the forecast is ~80 or above.
, Bubba City (slightly scared of potential choss here?)
Don't be.  I think all those X blocks have probably had chalked Xs on them for twenty years and they're all still in place.  Plus, there aren't that many of them, and where else are you going to pull a roof at 70' on a 95' bolted 5.8?  That area probably has the most options in a condensed space from 5.5 to 5.10 of any other crag at the new- which is also the reason it's regularly the most crowded.
, Orange Oswald Wall (or generally Summerville Lake).
Another good option, as the lake is close by, but it will also be crowded so resource-sharing is a must.

Here's a couple that you haven't thought of:  Do a search for 5.8 - 5.10 bolted routes at the Upper Meadow area.  Also check out the South Side crags at the Meadow (in the same difficulty range).  Both are a further walk, but have multiple options in your range I think... and if you're taking a group, making a further walk and going where you're likely to find less crowds will probably be right up your alley.  Have fun and remember to pack everything out.  


Arthur Ding · · Baltimore, MD · Joined Jan 2016 · Points: 20

Awesome, thanks all for the tips! I really appreciate it

Andrew S · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2016 · Points: 46
Arthur Ding wrote: Awesome, thanks all for the tips! I really appreciate it

Shouldn't you be studying

Arthur Ding · · Baltimore, MD · Joined Jan 2016 · Points: 20
Andrew S wrote:

Shouldn't you be studying

ha, go back to piloting your little robots. I'm gonna come by later and bug you about the New

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Southern States
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