Rocktown

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Rocktown, Georgia is a free face rock climbing area.[1] It consists of an outcropping of sandstone boulders on the Cumberland Plateau in northwest Georgia. It comprises several acres of large sandstone boulders; the average size is 30 to 40 feet (9.1 to 12.2 m) high. Every boulder has its own unique features, all with great foot and hand holds and very popular with climbers. The area presents challenges for all levels of climbers. There is a one mile hike from the trail head to get to the Rocktown area. Most of these boulders have been untainted by pollution and graffiti because it is in a remote part of northwest Georgia. Because it is located in a wildlife management area, it is possible to encounter wild animals in this area, including both venomous and non-venomous snakes, bobcats, deer, wild turkeys, black bears and wild hogs. When climbing and exploring the boulders, caves and grottoes it is common to encounter wasps, yellow-jackets and spiders and even the occasional bat.

The Rocktown trail and area is closed annually during firearms deer hunts. Specific dates are available in the current hunting seasons and regulations book available at www.georgiawildlife.com.

These formations are typical of those found in and around the Rocktown area.

Location[edit]

Rocktown trail is located on top of Pigeon Mountain in the extreme Northwest Georgia. It is part of the Crockford Pigeon Mountain Wildlife Management Area[2] and is administered by the Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division of the State of Georgia. It is northwest of Atlanta Georgia, and just south of Chattanooga, Tennessee. The town closest to the trail is LaFayette, Georgia. Please note that the Crockford Pigoen Mountain WMA is one of 32 state-owned designated hunting and fishing areas that require all persons entering the area to have a valid Georgia Outdoor Recreational Pass (GORP), as of January 2012.[3] Any persons on the WMA regardless of purpose must have a valid pass. However, persons who possess a valid Georgia 3-day hunting & fishing, WMA, Lifetime, Sportsman's, or Honorary license are exempt from this requirement. Individual and small group passes for up to 8 people are available on-line.[4]

Activities[edit]

Although rock climbing is the most popular activity in Rocktown, other activities include hunting, hiking, bird watching and picnicking. Camping is prohibited at Rocktown but is permitted in designated areas on certain portions of the wildlife management area.

A young climber uses a top-rope safety rig at Rocktown.
Ascending an unnamed wall at Rocktown, GA USA

Gear[edit]

Those planning to participate in technical rock climbing should bring at least 50 meters of rope for safety, but climbers who are bouldering really do not need to bring anything except some mats to fall on if they slip. The reason for this is that there are now permanently placed bolts and pins to use for rigging. Likely owing to the remoteness of the area, it is relatively free of graffiti and vandalism and the natural beauty of the location is mostly unspoiled. There are no bathrooms or comfort facilities and fresh potable water is not readily available on the wildlife management area, so it is advisable to bring plenty of drinking water, especially in the hot summer months.

References[edit]

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