Rock Climbing – at the New River Gorge

Each fall as the rock climbing season winds down in New Hampshire Terry and I look for areas to rock climb with warmer temperatures, quality stone and a unique experience. This year we decided on a revisit to the New River Gorge. My truck was loaded up and off we went for the 900 mile drive to Fayetteville, West Virginia.

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The NRG bridge spans the wide valley. On either rim are the 100 ft sandstome cliffs that run for miles in each direction. One of the main areas we climbed was aptly named the Endless Wall.

IMG_3276The NRG has both sport routes and crack climbs. Above IFMGA guide Art Mooney is leading the 4 star route called Black and Tan. This dihedral has beautiful stripes of colored rock with a soft touch and deserves its quality rating for sure.

IMG_8219Terry getting connected on one of the NRG’s finest arete climbs. This climbing route is located at the sunny Fern Point Party Buttress and called Party till Yer Blind. A testy traditional lead with very thoughtful climbing and just enough protection to keep one on the move.

IMG_3294Art in the middle of the techy slab moves PTYB route.

IMG_8224Our attention quickly changed from sport to crack routes. During the first days we were amazed at how many fine crack climbs were mixed in with the sport routes. Terry is following another classic climb called Mellifluous.

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Years ago the steep drop below the hairpin turn was the locals junkyard. The area is all cleaned up today and frequently climbed. Terry is on the action packed climb called Four Sheets to the Wind at the Junkyard Wall.

IMG_8226Access is interesting and well thought out. Different points along the NRG rim have ladders and down climbs to access the base area of the climbs.

IMG_3284Central Endless Wall – access point!!!

IMG_8236King of Swing

This is the best route at Kingfish area and one of the best straight in splitter cracks in the entire area.

IMG_8238Once again Mammut is king – this time at the New River Gorge.

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Both Terry and I were well equipped with our specialized Mammut climbing gear. At the core was a 9.5 Infinity rope, for the testy leads a Mammut Rock Rider helmet, to keep us light we used a Mammut Zephir Harness, and fall weather certainly requires a Mammut Go Far Hoody. In addition Mammut Express Quick Draws and Alpine draws, and plenty more!!!

Thanks to Mammut and the hard working folks at Mammut North America – our climbing kit worked extremely well and is very much appreciated.

Art Mooney IFMGA Mountain Guide

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