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Friction Wall

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
4 Bolts S 
Corner, The T,TR 
Drilled Pockets S,TR 
Hidden Art T,TR 
Make Believe T 
Truth, The T,TR 
Unknown 1 S 
Unknown 4 S 
Yoda's Vision TR 
Unsorted Routes:
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Friction Wall  

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 100'
Location: 39.2642, -76.7914 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 4,538
Administrators: Frances Fierst, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Dominic Albanese on Jul 26, 2009
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BETA PHOTO: The main slab on the left and the sport routes to ...

Use discrestion while on the approach via the tracks (CSX property) MORE INFO >>>


And old quarry that has been closed for some time. Has sort of an eerie quality. North facing so shady and buggy with the threat of chiggers during the summer.
There have been at least two deaths in the last twenty years and rumors of a man living another mile up in the woods.

Despite all this Friction has some great climbs. From the perfect slab of The Truth, to the 5.12 Drilled Pockets, to practice nailing, this forgotten relic finds a way to keep on giving.

While this area has been bolted in the past, use discretion and find a local that can help sort through the history of the area to make sure that a new route would indeed be new. Also a few routes here (on the Sport Wall) were "created" via chipping and drilled pockets. While this quarry is essentially man-made the current ethic is to leave the existing routes but to refrain from the creation of new ones.

The top of the cliff is subject to extreme erosion, and reaching the top anchors is best done by rapping off a tree.

A video showing some of the aid in the back right corner can be found here

Getting There 

From downtown Ellicott City park in the end of the lot past the train museum. If heading west on Frederick Road this is the first left after heading under the train bridge and just as you get into town proper.

Make sure you feed the meter appropriately as they are very strict about policing the area. Also a few spots are reserved for the private residences at the end of the cul de sac and should be respected.

Hike east along the tracks (keeping the flour mill on the left) for about 1/4 mile. The cliff will appear over a little rise on the right.

Divided into 4 sections from left to right as you are looking at the cliff. They are small enough not to warrant being divided into different areas on Mountain Project but it helps to find the right climb.

  • The Slab - Home of The Truth
  • The Sport Wall - Chipped/Bolted routes around the arete from the slab. The corner dihedral that used to be an aid route has fallen off due to ice and can be seen at the left end of this wall.
  • The Back Wall - a single bolted line on the slab in the back of the quarry
  • The Aid Wall - Practice aid routes in the back right of the quarry

Climbing Season

Weather station 6.2 miles from here

9 Total Routes

['4 Stars',1],['3 Stars',2],['2 Stars',3],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]

Featured Route For Friction Wall
Hidden Art is the thin crack line at the left end ...

Hidden Art 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a  MD : Patapsco State Park : Friction Wall
This route and Yoda's Vision both start off the same ledge, which is most easily reached from rappelling in from the top. Find the furthest most point of land at the top and use a high sling on the small tree as a directional.Leave the left end of the ledge via a thin crack in a corner, which changes to pure thin crack up higher.A great find recently unearthed by John Kelbel. Certainly worth the effort to get to, as it is probably the nicest crack line at the cliff.Staying tied in while belaying...[more]   Browse More Classics in MD

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