BEE ROCk (Monterey)
Land Manager: City of Monterey
Area Rep: OPEN
Bee Rock is considered the first developed climbing area of the Cumberland Plateau. The first ascents for free climbing were done by legends Frank Sanders, Eddie Whittemore, Mark Cartwright, Arno Ilgner. The routes are good-quality sandstone. It is well known that there is a long history of climbing at Bee Rock dating back to the early 70’s, but the land was privately owned and closed to climbing for nearly 20 years. SCC and Access Fund worked with private landowner, Mr. Robert Walker, and TennGreen Land Conservancy to establish a conservation easement specifying public access to the overlook at Bee Rock. Bee Rock is now owned by the city of Monterey and is officially a public park for generations of climbers, hikers and nature viewers to enjoy. Check out the cute town of Monterey during your visit and support local businesses!
For a more thorough history of Bee Rock, check out Bee Rock – Monterey Tennessee – A Short History by Arno Ilgner.
Park in the Overlook Parking. The access trail goes down a class 3 gully off the backside of the overlook. It continues around the base of the cliff and back out towards the parking lot. All the climbs are below the overlook area.
What to Expect
There are 24 established routes ranging from 5.6 to 5.13a on good quality sandstone. They are a mix of sport, trad, and top rope routes. The style is fun, technical face climbing and climbs similar to Castle Rock. With a grant from the Access Fund, SCC volunteers and local climbers worked hard to update the original anchor hardware which dated back to the 80s and was completely rusted out.
- Park open from daylight to dark.
- Dogs: Dogs are welcome, but please keep them on a leash.
- Leave No Trace: Keep this area beautiful and clean. Clean up after yourselves, your peers, and your pets. Lead by example and pick it up on the first pass.
There is no camping available at Bee Rock, but check-out nearby Spacious Skies Belle Ridge for some glamping options.