Rock Climbing in New River Gorge

New River Gorge | West Virginia
Trip Highlights

Top three reasons to go rock climbing in New River Gorge

  • Trip Highlight

    Thousands of climbing options and miles on miles of cliffline

  • Trip Highlight

    More than 3000 trad, sport, and bouldering routes

  • Trip Highlight

    One of the highest concentrations of boulders in the Mid-Atlantic

The New River Gorge is composed of three river gorges: New, Gauley, and Meadow. You’ll find over 3,000 established routes to discover in the area, attracting rock climbers from all over the world. The enormity of routes ensure no matter your skill level, there will be an objective for you. Discover a range of trad, bouldering, sport, cracks or slab routes. New River Gorge features a variety, such as short approaches to drop-top ropes or a longer approach to the famous Endless Wall ladder descent. Your guide can help you experience any aspect of climbing you want. Find out why every climber should visit New River Gorge from Aaron Gerry, an avid climber, adventurer and traveler.


May through October

Nearest city

Fayetteville, West Virginia


1-2 days

Skill level

Beginner to advanced


Most Popular Itineraries

A Customized Day of Climbing With a Private Guide


Gain individual attention for the range of multi-pitch, top-rope and classic climbing routes. The experts will design the day to match your skill level and objectives. How about trying Bubba City or Endless Wall? On the Nuttall sandstone, you’ll meet your goals and take away skills that you can apply on the crags back home.

Half-Day of Climbing With a Private Guide


Thanks to its quick approaches, you can accomplish a lot with a half-day of climbing in NRG. Your guides will discuss your goals with you and help you maximize your time. Focus on skills to become a better climber or get a taste of the area on one of its incredible routes. With a private guide, you’ll be surprised how much you can accomplish in just a few hours!

Two-Day Sport Leading Course

2 days

Become a sport leader in the gorgeous New River Gorge. If you’re an experienced top rope climber or an indoor leader, this two-day sport leading course will leave you feeling confident in your outdoor leading ability. Learn about managing risk, equipment selection, belay techniques, route selection, along with lead climbing principles and movement coaching. 


  • Outdoor climbing or indoor sport climbing experience

Two-Day Trad Leading Course

2 days

Are you an experienced climber but have little to no lead climbing experience? This two-day course will make a trad leader out of you! Practice gear placement, rope management, anchor building and top belaying while backed up on a top-rope system. Thanks to expert guides, you’ll be ready to lead epic NRG routes like Four Sheets to the Wind and Party in My Mind.


  • Outdoor climbing experience

Two-Day Safety Skills and Self-Rescue Clinic

2 days

Be more confident climbing outdoors thanks to the techniques you’ll learn in this two-day clinic. Work with the experts to gain fundamental skills that you’ll be able to take with you regardless of where you climb. Learn such skills as belay escapes, load transfers, improvised haul systems, rescue rappelling and lowering and improvised rope ascension. This course is for anyone that leads or follows sport or trad routes. 


  • 1 year outdoor climbing experience
  • Experience as second or lead on trad climbs
  • Experience climbing in multi-pitch terrain

Reviews (2)

Climbing in New River Gorge
DeanRoberts81 about Blue Ridge Mountain Guides on TripAdvisor

The trip was excellent. Weather conditions posed a bit of a challenge but my climbing partner and I accomplished the goals we set out for: to advance our level of sport climbing. Our guide Nickel had a meticulous and methodical teaching style which we both appreciated. We felt safe at all times and Nickel instilled the confidence in us to challenge ourselves during the climbs. He is a wealth of climbing and outdoor knowledge. I would recommend him to anyone climbing in the New River/Red River Gorge areas. 

Great experience
B8319LNkeithc about Blue Ridge Mountain Guides on TripAdvisor

Worked out better than I could have hoped. These kind people will take care of you. Safe, knowledgeable.

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Things to know

Things to know

Covid measures in New River Gorge

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 New River Gorge please refer to the West Virginia Tourism Office website or the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources.

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’s included?

What you get on this adventure:

  • An experienced, local rock-climbing guide with extensive knowledge of the area
  • A half or full day of rock climbing depending on your chosen itinerary
  • All technical climbing gear

What’s not included:

  • Transportation
  • Accommodations
  • 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?

New River Gorge 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!

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:

  • Helmet
  • 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)
  • Ropes
  • 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.)
  • Sunglasses
  • 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.

What does a typical day look like?

Your climbing itinerary will be fully customized to match your skill level and objectives. You and your guide will discuss route selection, skills development, and whatever else you’d like to focus on. From there, your guide will plan the perfect day tailored just for you.

Depending on your objectives, full days may start earlier and end later, but in general, your day will look like this:

  • 8:30 am: Meet your guide at the guide’s recommended location [add exact meetup location if it exists]
  • 9:00 am: Gear up and carpool to the crag
  • 9:30 am: Start climbing your objective for the day
  • 12:30 am – 1:00 pm: Lunch (bring snacks and plenty of water)
  • 1:00 pm – 4:30 pm: Build upon techniques developed in the morning session and explore additional terrain as time allows
  • 4:30 pm: Back to the cars for debriefing and high fives

Group sizes and age requirements

Group sizes and prices:

  • Normally, group sizes are between 1–4 people with one guide, with the option of up to 6 people per guide depending on the chosen itinerary. 
  • Costs per person decrease as the group grows for private tours, so it’s the perfect opportunity to climb with friends and family. 
  • Group size for courses is 1-2 people with one guide.
  • The cost per person doesn’t decrease as the group grows for all courses.
  • 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 New River Gorge National Park, most people fly to Columbus, OH, or Charlotte, NC, both under 4 hours away. From there, you can take a shuttle or rent a car.

You will typically meet your guide at the New River Gorge climbing area’s parking lots. 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.

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