This past Sunday we headed up to King Phillip's Spring, near Keene Valley, to climb with our kids.
With so many excellent crags in the Keene Valley area, KPS probably isn't at the top of anybody's list of favorite cliffs, but it's actually got a lot going for it: easy access (one minute from Exit 30), a short approach (10 minutes, allow 15-20 with kids), good toprope anchors (bring a static rope), and an open, flat base. Most importantly, the climbing at KPS is on coarse, clean rock at a laid-back angle, with numerous options in the 5.2 to 5.5 range. Perfect for an afternoon of family climbing.
guidebook) and whatever routes are immediately adjacent.
Climbing with kids can be a challenge, but with two adults Beth and I can share belay duty. We even each got to climb a few pitches ourselves. Since I've only managed to get out climbing a handful of times the last several years, I'll happily take whatever I can get.
With a couple family climbing outings under our belts so far this year, we'll be looking to do at least a couple more. Wilmington Notch and Owl's Head are two possible future destinations. I'd be interested in getting feedback from other climbers on suitable family climbing crags, either in the comments section below or by email.