Rocky Face Mountain Recreational Area | NC Weekend | UNC-TV

Rocky Face Mountain Recreational Area | NC Weekend | UNC-TV


>>>ROCK CLIMBING HAS BECOME AN
EXTREMELY POPULAR SPORT WORLDWIDE. AND NORTH CAROLINA IS TOUTED AS
HAVING SOME OF THE BEST ROCK CLIMBING IN THE SOUTH. ONE OF THE NEWER VENUES IN OUR
STATE IS ROCKY FACE RECREATIONAL AREA IN ALEXANDER COUNTY. AND WHETHER YOU USE THE PARK TO
CLIMB, HIKE, PICNIC, OR FOR EDUCATION, YOU CAN ALWAYS COUNT
ON A FUN TIME.>>ROCKY FACE IS WHAT’S CALLED A
GNEISS MOUNTAIN. I DON’T MEAN IT’S NICE AS IN
IT’S NOT MEAN. IT’S GNEISS IN THE KIND OF ROCK,
G-N-E-I-S-S. IT’S GNEISS. DO YOU KNOW WHAT KIND OF ROCK
GNEISS IS?>>NO.>>THERE’S ONLY THREE KINDS. GUESS.>>IGNEOUS?>>METAMORPHIC.>>METAMORPHIC. THIS IS AT THE END OF THE BRUSHY
MOUNTAIN CHAIN, AND THIS IS ONE OF THE OLDEST MOUNTAINS IN THE
WORLD.>>THE LAND THAT IS NOW HOME TO
ROCKY FACE PARK WAS FIRST USED AS A ROCK QUARRY.>>FROM THE EARLY 1920s UNTIL
THE MID-1940s, IT WAS MINED FOR THE GRANITE. THE GRANITE WAS USED FOR THE
GRAVEL ROADS IN THE LOCAL AREAS AND FOR RAILROAD BEDS.>>THE JOB OF PRODUCING THE
GRAVEL WAS GIVEN TO A NEARBY PRISON.>>THE LOCALS WOULD COME OUT ON
SATURDAY. THEY PUT ON THEIR BEST CLOTHES,
AND THERE’D BE CONCESSION TRAILERS OUT HERE, AND THEY
WOULD HAVE A FAMILY PICNIC, AND THEY WOULD WATCH THE
PRISONERS BREAK ROCKS. THAT WAS ENTERTAINMENT. SO BE GLAD YOU’VE GOT CABLE.>>IN 2003, ROCKY FACE MOUNTAIN
WAS PLACED ON THE NORTH CAROLINA REGISTRY OF NATURAL HERITAGE
AREAS. AND BY 2012, IT WAS OPEN TO THE
PUBLIC AS A RECREATIONAL AREA. TODAY IT CONSISTS OF NEARLY 320
ACRES WITH AROUND 5 MILES OF WALKING TRAILS, A PICNIC
SHELTER, RESTROOMS, AND AN EXCELLENT SITE FOR ROCK
CLIMBING.>>THE ACCESSIBILITY IS
INCREDIBLE. YOU KNOW, THERE’S NO APPROACH IN
YOUR ROCK CLIMBING.>>BECAUSE YOU CAN PARK RIGHT AT
THE ROCK. MOST OTHER PLACES YOU’LL HAVE TO
WALK, YOU KNOW, HALF MILE OR SO TO GET INTO THE CLIMBING AREAS. YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO THAT HERE.>>CLIMBERS ALSO PREFER ROCKY
FACE FOR THE RANGE OF DIFFICULTY IT OFFERS.>>WE HAVE ANYTHING FROM REALLY
EASY ROUTES UP TO HARD STUFF. WE HAVE A LOT OF WHAT WE CALL
MODERATES. THEY’RE A LITTLE BIT EASIER THAT
MOST PEOPLE CAN CLIMB. AND WE’VE TRIED TO DO THAT,
TRY TO CATER TO EVERYBODY.>>AND THEY’RE ALLOWING US TO
ESTABLISH CLIMBS AND CREATE A CLIMBING AREA, SO THAT’S BIG FOR
ROCK CLIMBING.>>SINCE THE COUNTY HAS OWNED
IT, WE HAVE BEEN, THROUGH VOLUNTEERS, REBOLTING THE —
THE ANCHORS IN THE MOUNTAIN. THE ROCK CLIMBERS HAVE BEEN
REALLY PLEASED. THEY’VE BEEN A LOT OF HELP. THEY’VE BEEN VOLUNTEERING A LOT
OF THEIR TIME.>>ESPECIALLY SINCE THEY’RE
ALLOWING EVERYTHING HERE TO BE SPORT CLIMBS, WHICH ARE —
YOU KNOW, THERE’S ACTUALLY PERMANENT BOLTS DRILLED INTO THE
ROCK. SO WE’RE TRYING TO MAKE THESE
CLIMBS AS SAFE AS POSSIBLE BY REMOVING ROCK AND PUTTING IN
MODERN STAINLESS STEEL TO MAKE THE ROUTES AS SAFE AS POSSIBLE.>>THE CLIMBING TENDS TO BE
STEEP FACE CLIMBS WITH A FEW HOLDS IN BETWEEN. IT’S PRETTY HARD. IT’S HARD CLIMBING.>>IF HIKING IS MORE YOUR SPEED,
ROCKY FACE HAS SEVERAL TRAILS THAT OFFER AMAZING BENEFITS FOR
THOSE WILLING TO DEDICATE THE TIME.>>ACTUALLY, JUST FIVE MONTHS. AND I’VE LOST 40 POUNDS IN FIVE
MONTHS ON THIS MOUNTAIN.>>PROBABLY HAS THE BEST MARKED
TRAILS THAT I’VE EVER SEEN. AND IF YOU TAKE YOUR MAP EVERY
TENTH OF A MILE OR SO, THERE’S A MARKER ON A TREE. YOU CAN LOOK RIGHT DOWN ON YOUR
MAP AND YOU KNOW EXACTLY WHERE YOU’RE AT. AND I’VE NOT SEEN THAT ANYWHERE
ELSE.>>IT’S CALLED GEOCACHING,
A TECHNOLOGICAL FORM OF TREASURE HUNTING USING A GPS.>>YOU GO TO geocaching.com,
DOWNLOAD YOUR COORDINATES, COME TO THE PARK, USE YOUR GPS DEVICE
OR YOUR iPHONE AND LOOK FOR THE HIDDEN TREASURES IN THE PARK.>>HOWEVER, VISITORS TO ROCKY
FACE BELIEVE THE GREATEST TREASURE OF ALL IS THE SIMPLE
FACT YOU’RE ENJOYING A BEAUTIFUL VIEW, FRESH AIR, AND THE CHANCE
TO EXPERIENCE A MAGNIFICENT PARK JUST ABOUT ANY WAY THEY CHOOSE.>>PEOPLE NEED TO GET OUT OF THE
HOUSE. YOU KNOW, THAT’S BECOME A
PROBLEM THESE DAYS. KIDS WANT TO STAY AT HOME. WELL, WE HAVE SOMETHING LIKE
THIS TO TRY TO GET THEM OUT. THAT’S WHAT I’M DOING WITH MY
STUDENTS. I’M TRYING TO EXPOSE THEM TO IT,
SEE THAT THERE ARE OTHER THINGS TO DO OTHER THAN PLAY VIDEO
GAMES.>>UNPLUG AND JUST BE OUT HERE
IN NATURE AND ENJOY HIKING, ENJOY CLIMBING. YOU KNOW, JUST BEING OUTSIDE IS
A GREAT THING.>>THE SLOGAN FOR ALEXANDER
COUNTY IS THE GEM OF NORTH CAROLINA. THIS IS THE GEM OF ALEXANDER
COUNTY. IT’S AWESOME.

2 thoughts on “Rocky Face Mountain Recreational Area | NC Weekend | UNC-TV”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *