If you are looking for Winter Bouldering Areas in Pennsylvania you are in luck. Many areas in the Keystone State offer some excellent opportunities to get out and boulder where there is abundant shelter and excellent problems. Many climbers brave the harsh winter in Pennsylvania, and rightfully so. True, climbing areas in the Northeast are not frequented as much as they are in summer, but there is excellent bouldering and a lot of devout climbers prefer to send in the winter as there is much better friction, especially at diabase areas like Haycock, Gretna, Gov ones Stables, and lots of other areas. We’ve put together a partial list of some really good areas in PA that you can boulder at from late November to late March and we promise you won’t loose any fingers, toes, or other appendages.
1. Haycock Mountian
One of the most popular areas in the state is not surprisingly an excellent area to boulder at in winter. Why? The simple answer is good friction and good shelter. The entirety of Haycock Mountain is protected and well sheltered from winds. Sun also filters through the bare bones of the leafless trees in winter and you can get really lucky and get some warm days. Haycock is also much warmer than Northern Pennsylvania bouldering areas and you can expect about a 10 degree difference at times if you live up north and want to travel down. Expect even warmer differences if you come down form New York to boulder at Haycock.
2. Mount Gretna
Gretna is similar to Haycock in many ways and offers some excellent opportunities to send projects and stay sheltered from wind and cold. There are occasions where you may need to wade through snow and harsh cold but Gretna is far enough south and not very far from the Mason Dixon Line that you can get really good days in winter. The area is located really close to the parking lot at Governor Dick Natural Area so yo don’t need to walk far from you r car to boulder, making it easy to get a quick session in and get warm.
3. Governor Stables
GS is another doppleganger to both Haycock and Gretna and offers the same deal. Shelter from wind; because its in a nice little sheltered basin, and short approach. You need to sign the waiver to climb here and respect seasonal access. This area is a great area to get a lot of bouldering in a very close and concentrated area.
4. Hunter Rocks
Hunter is a descent spot in winter. Approaches are easy, climbing is great, and the rock is friendly to cold hands. Hunter gets colder than some areas in the state but you can get really lucky and get good weather into the 40s during winter; you can also get negative digits too.
5. The Traxx
Don’t let the fact that this bouldering area is adjacent to a ski area sway your decision to climb here in the off-season, you can get some quick access and sheltered boulder problems here with ease. This area is located in Scranton and is literally right off I-81. We made a free guidebook app for the Traxx Here.
6. Bauers Mt and Emmaus
Allentown’s closest areas are also winter friendly spots to send at. These areas have some good problems located right behind close parking and make for a quick hit with ok temps. The areas are located right at the city limits and are user friendly and often void of snow.
7. Francis E Walter Dam
This area is a great spot in winter because sun hits the Atlantis boulders and several other spots that surround this awesome area in the Poconos. This area is a sizable bouldering area with Gunks-like boulders. All the beta you need on The Francis E Walter bouldering areas can be found in the FE Walter guidebook app.
8. City of Boulders
Located at the inlet to the FE Walter in the Poconos this area is a great area to explore and has some unbelievable bouldering. House-size boulders are located for a mile of shoreline and get good sunlight to warm the rocks in winter. This area is also included as a guidebook app.
There are lots of areas to boulder in Pennsylvania and great opportunities to visit areas that are winter friendly. We included a good list of areas that we recommend but there are tons of other areas in the Keystone state that fit the climbing profiles of what is listed above.
Can you think of any areas we should add to our list? Please comment below with any ideas?