The Narrows

About The Area

While officially named Nockamixon Cliffs Natural Area,  it is known to ice climbers as The Narrows. Located near Kintnersville,  it is one of the rare spots in South Eastern PA for ice climbing. These 300+ foot high Brunswick Shale cliffs are encased in ice when the condition are right making for some prime ice routes.

LocationKintnersville, PA
GuidebookIce Climbing Pennsylvania
Land ManagerDCNR State Park-Natural Area


  • 2024 Closure notification from DCNR:

    “Beginning February 1, a major portion of the Nockamixon Cliffs area of the park will be closed to all activity, including ice climbing.  As in previous years, the closure is in effect for the protection of sensitive species. Visitors to the area may still park in the roadside lots and use the towpath as normal. Closed areas are posted with signage. Public cooperation is much appreciated during this closure, which first began in 2016. Since then, the cliffs have been closed annually between Feb 1 and July 31.

    As a reminder, the Nockamixon Cliffs are a designated Natural Area. This special designation is an area within a state park of unique scenic, geologic, or ecological value which will be maintained in a natural condition by allowing physical and biological processes to operate usually without direct human intervention. Title 17 Chapter 17, (Conservation and Natural Resources) of the Pennsylvania Code provides some additional information on the designation and administration of these lands. Ice climbing is allowed when conditions permit, outside of the closure time frame. During the closure, some established climbing routes on either end of the closed area will remain open, including “Dead Deer Gully” and “45 MPH”.

    If there are any questions, please call the park office at 610-982-5560.”


  • This area is NOT open for rock climbing or dry tooling due to the presence of the artic wildflower Roseroot. DCNR allows ice climbing for two reasons. First, once the ice is formed the Roseroot and other species are considered protected under the ice. Second, once the ice melts all evidence of human activity is gone along with it so it is as if we were never even there.


  • The a large portion of the area is CLOSED for ice climbing as of February 1 each year in cooperation with DCNR and PGC due to a raptor nesting site. Please see closure map below. The Access Fund is aware of the closure and has tried in the past to work with state officials.  The best thing climbers can do is comply with the closure as we try to make further progress.




Every year since 2016 the Narrows have been closed for raptor nesting. In the original...
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In short, don’t do it! Dry tooling is expressingly prohibited at the Narrows for two...
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