Here’s a new guide featuring a little-known bouldering area! High Ridge is in Laurel with a short approach (5ish minutes). As you’ll see, the guide gives it a nice breakdown and describes it as a “once a season” destination with just under 20 listed problems. You can find most stuff a Maryland boulderer would be looking for: there are great approach instructions, V0 to V5 boulder problems are listed and described, and a couple open projects mentioned if you’re looking for a challenge!
All credit for the guide goes out to Shawn Seifert, a local climber you might recognize from some of his videos that have made their way around DPM and ClimbingNarc:
And some Not-So-Maryland videos also by Shawn:
Thanks for reading! Here’s the guide:
High Ridge Bouldering
The Balcony Junior guide is up! But, before you download it and run out, take a second to read the access issues; there isn’t much.
Parking can be difficult here. As the guide touches on, there is a parking lot that serves as a school bus turnaround on the week days. There is only a small area to park here, once you find it (at the end of the small town of Sandy Hook) just remember the picture below.
Parking anywhere else could get you towed on weekdays or ticketed on weekends. Also, there’s not restricted or limited access right now, but where resources are scarce, in this case parking, is where access issues come from. Be smart and climb safe!
And now for the download link: Balcony Junior MDGuide
If you’re interested, the Harpers Ferry section of mountain project lists a couple other parking areas that could be useful to know in case the spots are taken at the turnaround.
Mini Guide #1: Levitation Rock
It’s north of 70 and just off of 32. There aren’t a ton of lines, but the climbing is all top quality. If you’re looking for recommendations, drop your pad under The Jam, Sparkly Spots, and/or Mulligan Flash. Check out these videos from Jon Alexander and Robin Close for an idea of what to expect from the main boulder:
Below: A climber on the Jam Boulder’s Fat Man Project
Below: Upper Levitation in all its steepness
ACCESS ISSUES: You need to hike near the train tracks to get here, and rumor has it that CSX is cracking down on people who are caught on the tracks. Avoid getting ticketed: Stay well off the tracks. Also, College Road runs above the boulders; however, the neighbors don’t take kindly to people parking on their road and the only time we did it, we got towed. In addition to all that, the boulders are within a few hundred feet of “the neighbors” and it’s not clear as to where the boulders are property wise, so it’s probably best to keep it down -unless of course, you’re on the send.
With all that said, parking at the public park and approaching as mentioned in the directions has not turned up any problems as long as you stay off the tracks and don’t get too rowdy at the boulders. Happy climbing!
Here’s the link to the Levitation Mini Guide!
5/4/12 Update: We have a wild, new line on Upper Levitation that will be going in the guide in the next week or so: Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow