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New Farley Parking Beta

The WMCC is excited to announce a new partnership with the Franklin Regional Transit System (FRTA). The Town of Erving and the FRTA have arranged the inclusion of a park & ride transit system between Erving Center and Farley Ledges. The ride system allows both advance and immediate reservation of a bus that will take visitors to and from the main Farley parking lot for a very low fare. Weekend services run from 9:30am-5:30pm, weekdays from 6:30am-7:30pm.

 

How to use the FRTA service to get to Farley:

  1. Pre-book a ride through the FRTA Access app (Download through Google Play, Apple).
  2. To make booking trips easier, users can type in “Farley Ledges” and “Erving Municipal Parking Lot” as their drop off/pick up point.
  3. Make sure to bring cash for the fare.
  4. Drop off any bulky gear and extra climbers at the Farley lot.
  5. Park in Erving and wait for your ride to arrive!

Where to park:

Park at the Erving Municipal lot, 8 West Main St., Erving.

The municipal lot is located at the junction with Arch St., just past the Freight House and  Erving Station Chocolates, across from the former Crooked Tap. Stop at the Freight House for coffee or lunch (they have great vegan options), or the Erving Station to get a sweet treat for the ride home!

Additional parking available at Arch Street in the Pearl B Care Historical Building parking lot.

Although Erving is the pickup point for riders coming from the east, the “Zone 1” service extends from Erving to Greenfield therefore riders can book from any location along the route for the same fare.

Cost:

Fares MUST BE PAID IN CASH. No change will be given– those overpaying will receive a credit towards future rides. We suggest bringing $1 bills.

The fare is $3 per ride for the person making the reservation and each additional person on the same booking is half price. Therefore, six people will pay $1.75 each for the shared trip.

Covid-19 Precautions:

FRTA vans are currently limited to six passengers at a time. Masks are required.

 

Visit the FRTA website and FRTA brochure for more information.

 

Published 3/17/2021, updated 3/19/2021.

Farley Ledges

Intro | Parking | Facilities | Map | Falcon Closure | Trails | Current Issues | Why no Guidebook | Commercial Guiding

Many climbers traverse Route 2 in Farley, Massachusetts numerous times, looking for – but never quite catching sight of – Farley Ledges tucked behind the trees. While this search might prove to be an apt metaphor for one’s entire trip, the high concentration of tall, hard routes and excellent bouldering make the effort worth it.

These southeast facing chain of ledges, like much of the rock in the region, is granitic gneiss.  This stone is characterized by big, sloping horizontals, small edges and sweeping features. At least four waves of route developers have put up a variety of lines spanning the gamut of highball bouldering to committing traditional lines to pumpy sport routes. The climbing is best when friction is the highest. Generally, ideal conditions can be found in spring and fall, although the heavily forested areas provide ample shade on hot summer days.

Farley sees more visitors each year, especially on the weekends and holidays.   Plan on seeing other parties. If the the lots are full, consider a visit to Rose Ledges or Mormon Hollow: both are within two miles of Farley and offer more solitude.

In fact, the willingness to climb at a different crag on heavy use days is one big thing individual climbers could do to preserve access to Farley.  Farley has been closed numerous times by landowners disgruntled by our numbers, our behavior or both.  The WMCC was born to deal with the last closure and we have kept it open.  Our purchase of the seven acre plot allowed us to build permanent parking and trail access, but we do not own any of the stone. In other words, we have stabilized – but not guaranteed –  our access to the climbing. Please, tread lightly so we can all come back.

Parking

Main Lot: The primary parking area and the trail head directly off of Route 2 is owned by the WMCC. Please park considerately and pay the $5.00 suggested donation at the kiosk. This lot is usually full by 9:00 am on weekends with nice weather, so have a plan B in mind if you will be arriving after 9:00 am. There is a designated accessible parking space in this lot.

Erving Municipal Lot: A few minutes East of Farley, in the center of Erving (near the bright pink Erving Station and the Freight house), is a paved lot owned by the town of Erving. There are several EV chargers. We HIGHLY suggest meeting climbing partners here and carpooling to a closer lot. You can also park here and book a ride on the FRTA, which will take you right up to the Farley lot. Find more info on the FRTA service.

The 8-car lot: Look for Holmes Street (heading west, it’s on the right, heading east, on the left). Drive up Holmes street to Wells Street, take Wells to the end of the pavement, and turn right onto Cross St. Please respect the 8 car limit and don’t park elsewhere in this neighborhood.

Bridge Street: Parking is acceptable across the bridge on the North (left) side of the street only. Parking on the North side should be done carefully to avoid blocking traffic and especially emergency vehicles. Please respect the residents and other vehicles. Cars have been towed in this area.

10 Maple Ave: Local climbers offer a small lot in front of their house at 10 Maple Ave. There is a box for a suggested $5 donation.

Where not to park: Anywhere on either side of Route 2 or anywhere that is not designated for parking. If all of these options are full, the crag probably is too!

Facilities

There is a Porta Potty in the main lot for most of the year. It may not be there in the late winter or early spring. Please plan accordingly and bring wag bags for emergencies!

Map

Click here for a link to the interactive map above of all the Western Mass crags discussed on this site.

Click here for a map of the crags at Farley (no route information, just a map of the crags).

Falcon Closure

The WMCC, in accordance to the wishes of Massachusetts Fish and Wildlife and abutting landowners, maintains a voluntary, seasonal closure of selected routes to enable nesting pairs of Peregrine Falcons to hatch and raise their offspring in peace.

During this closure, please stay off all routes on the right side of Pot Ledge Buttress (starting from “All Your Base”) to the K2 Buttress.  If you are uncertain about where these formations lay, obey any posted signs as these areas are clearly marked.

The closure is in effect from February 15th – June15th every year.

Trails

The main access trail is located beyond the kiosk at the end of the parking lot. From the parking lot, walk north up the hillside to the intersection with the Red Dot trail. Turn right and the trail will wind through the boulder field before it meets the multi-state New England Trail (Metacomet-Monadnock Section) at Briggs Brook. Continue straight ahead and the trail will take you to the Wall of Early Morning Light, the most popular sport climbing wall at Farley. To the left the Red Dot trail continues around the back and ridge of Rattlesnake Mountain which is spectacular 1-1/2 mile hike in it’s own right. Many portions of trail are located on private property so please show your respect. Keep your dogs leashed when visiting Farley Ledge since many of the abutting landowners also have dogs.

Current issues

Currently, the WMCC, at the request of property owners, has a NO GUIDEBOOK policy for Farley Ledges. This means that no comprehensive route information for Farley ledges should be posted on-line or otherwise distributed.

Why no Guidebook:

  • All the crags and boulder problems are on private or Power Company managed land (see map).
  • Not having a guidebook was part of the original agreement with landowners to gain climbing access.
  • Very limited parking is currently available and street or highway parking is a source of friction with residents of the area.
  • The Power Company (FirstLight Power Resources) is currently renegotiating the operating license with FERC (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission). Part of this license covers recreational activity on the leased State property and the implications for climbing are yet to be determined.

Farley property map

 

Commercial Guiding

Since a portion of Farley Ledge is owned by FirstLight & Power, climbers and other visitors to that land are obligated to follow the rules and regulations established by the Northfield Mountain Environmental & Recreation Center. Part of these regulations include restrictions on the licensed use of their property for professional guiding services. At this time, FirstLight and Northfield Mountain are not interested in allowing licensed use of the cliffs for commercial climbing classes or trips. This is limited to the portion of Farley Ledge owned by FirstLight.  Property owner information can be found on the kiosk at the main trail head.