Top three reasons to go rock climbing in Seneca Rocks
One of the best multi-pitch spots on the East Coast
Technical, alpine-like terrain will keep you on your toes
One of the highest technical U.S. summits with hundreds of multi-pitch routes
Seneca Rocks is the tallest 5th class summit on the East Coast, and this renowned climbing destination is known for its multi-pitch routes, technical terrain, and alpine feel. There are ample routes for all levels of climbing experience, making it a suitable location for new and seasoned climbers alike. Partner up with a local guide and make the most out of what the area has to offer. Whatever your Seneca Rocks climbing objectives are, your guide will show you the local highlights for an unforgettable day of adventure. Find out more about this prime multi-pitch climbing location on the East Coast from Grant Price, head guide for Blue Ridge Mountain Guides.
Year-round; peak season is September and October
Pittsburgh is a 3.5-hour drive from Seneca Rocks
Beginner to advanced
Choose how you spend your day
A Custom Day of Multi-Pitch Climbing
A day of climbing with a private guide is the perfect way to work on your objectives with an experienced professional that will cater their instruction to your skill set. Whether you’re a beginner who wants to feel safer on the rocks or a seasoned climber aching for a challenge, your customized itinerary will ensure you have a great day of climbing in Seneca Rocks.
Learn to Lead Course
Leading is the exciting next step for an experienced climber. With this course, you’ll learn to place gear, mock lead, trad lead and fall while being backed up on a top rope. You’ll gain all of the technical knowledge with plenty of time to practice.
- Outdoor climbing experience
Safety Skills and Self Rescue Clinic
Every climber that plans to get serious should learn safety skills and self rescue techniques. This course teaches advanced knots and hitches, and covers a variety of rope ascension scenarios. With your newfound skills, if you end up in a sticky situation, and you’ll know just what to do.
- 1 year outdoor climbing experience
- Experience as second or lead on trad climbs
- Experience climbing in multi-pitch terrain
Meet your guides
AMGA Certified Guide
AMGA Certified Guide
Blue Ridge Mountain GuidesBlue Ridge Mountain Guides
Blue Ridge Mountain Guides
Nickel was a fabulous guide for our first foray to Seneca Rocks. Very focused on safety for us beginners. When a thunderstorm hit he clearly put our safety above his own and also went to make sure there weren’t other climbers who needed assistance on the rocks. Great communication before and after the trip. We had a group of 3 and did one day. Would recommend 2 days if you were beginners like us. Day 1 for mostly teaching and day 2 for more climbing.
Seriously hard to describe how satisfied my buddy and I were with the experience. Grant was the consummate pro, teaching us anchors and multi pitch climbing over the course of 2 days. We signed up for gym to crag, as both of us have climbed a bit, but one mostly indoors and the other a long time ago. By the end of the two days we had climbed some legit walls and were far more comfortable placing pro and building anchors for mid-station belays. Safety was his primary focus, though not overbearingly so…but also having a great time. I will definitely use BRMG again the next time I want to climb at Seneca or anywhere in the region. Thanks Grant!
Blue Ridge guides cover several locations, and are quite versatile. I’ve had climbing days that included leading, top rope, self rescue practice, and gear assessments. I highly recommend this organization.
Was given a birthday gift package to climb Seneca rocks with a friend, a 15-year reunion with this rock face. So grateful that my husband found Blue Ridge Mountain Guides for this trip! Dakota was the most exceptionally patient, safe, and super intelligent guide I have ever had for a climbing adventure. He made sure that my friend Linda and I were briefed on every possible move/technique that he presented to us, and made sure we were safe and having fun every step of the way. I knew I was going to be a bit nervous along the way, and he made sure to ease my mind and keep us safe the entire journey, from parking lot to summit and back. I learned so much from him! I cannot recommend Dakota enough as a guide for any of your future adventures! Thank you so much for making this an incredibly memorable birthday!
Things to know
Covid measures in Seneca Rocks
57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity.
We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, guides and the communities they’re travelling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in Seneca Rocks, WV, please refer to the Official West Virginia State website.
Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!
What you get in this adventure package:
- An experienced, local rock-climbing guide with extensive knowledge of the area
- 4-8 hours of rock climbing each day (depending on your chosen itinerary)
- All technical climbing gear
What’s not included:
- Food and snacks
How fit do I need to be?
If you can climb a ladder, you’re good to go. Being in good shape is always a plus but far from necessary. Rock climbing is all about using good movement technique rather than muscling up a cliff using brute strength. To ensure you have a fun day, your guide will choose routes that best suit your skill and fitness level.
What if I’ve never climbed before?
Seneca Rocks has plenty of options for beginner climbers. Whether you’ve never climbed before or are transitioning from the gym to outdoor climbing, your guide will customize the day to suit your skill level and objectives. With a guide by your side, you’ll learn something new, stay safe on the rocks, and most importantly, have fun!
For intermediate to advanced climbers, Seneca Rocks has loads of routes to spend the day on. Your guide will discuss your objectives and customize the day to your goals. Let your guide plan the day so you can focus on developing your skills while climbing the classic routes or best hidden gems the area has to offer.
What about required equipment?
All technical climbing equipment will be provided by your guiding service. However, if you have your own gear, feel free to bring it. You’ll need:
- Harness with a locking carabiner, belay device, and chalk bag
- Rock shoes (included in the price, but we recommend bringing your own if you have them)
- Climbing hardware (quickdraws, cam devices, stoppers, etc.)
Here’s a list of the equipment we suggest you bring:
- Day pack large enough to carry all the items listed (around a 40L bag)
- Water bottle
- Food you can eat on-the-go
- Toiletries (sunscreen, bug spray, toilet paper, etc.)
- Camera — optional
Dress comfortably and for the weather in clothes you can move in. We suggest bringing clothing appropriate for the season. Layers are best and don’t wear jeans.
Group sizes and age requirements
Group sizes and prices:
- Group sizes are usually between 1–4 people with one guide, but you can also go with a larger group of up to 6 people per guide.
- Cost per person will decrease as the group grows for private tours, so it’s the perfect opportunity to climb with friends and family.
- Climbing days can be arranged for bigger groups. Contact us prior to booking.
Min. age requirements:
- If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
- Minors younger than 18 may be permitted to climb on a case-by-case basis, but must be in the presence of a parent or legal guardian.
If your group has climbers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.
Getting there and meeting location
To get to Seneca Rocks, most people fly into Charlottesville–Albemarle Airport in Charlottesville or Dulles International Airport in Washington D.C. From there, you can rent a car or take a shuttle to Seneca Rocks.
Seneca Rocks sits right at the junction of Route 33 and Route 55 in West Virginia — you can’t miss it. The hike to the cliffs usually starts from the parking lot across from the historic Sites Homestead or from the nearby markets and coffee shops. The exact climbing spot will be discussed after the booking as guides make that decision after considering the skill level of the group and factors such as crag traffic and weather.