It was quite the hullabaloo in November of 2011, when it became clear that the Safe Harbor Climbing area in south central Pennsylvania would become open to the public once again. Largely due to the hard work and dedication of some local climbers, this once-popular east coast climbing destination (restricted for almost twenty years) was reopened for public access. . .and not just public access, but CLIMBING access. Yay!
This area is a great place for locals to come with their young kids. Now, don’t get me wrong, the climbing is mostly slab and/or vertical, and the rock tends to be slow to dry out. On the upside, it is located in central PA, less than 15 minutes from the Maryland border and only 25 minutes from our house.
The approach is only 15-20 (flat) minutes. Most of the approach is a wide-open stone trail (jogging stroller friendly, if you can believe it!). The area at the base of the rock is flat and wide open. The rock is south facing, so it is a perfect locale for a winter, fall, or cool spring day of climbing. . . not so much for mid day summer sun (scorching!).
If this sounds appealing, check out the guidebook, written by our own Eric Horst. Want to get involved? Join the Safe Harbor Facebook group. Parking is an issue, so be sure to follow the guidebook and/or check out the group for more information. As always, donate to the Access Fund to help keep this and other climbing areas open.