Deep water soloing at Summersville Lake in West Virginia is illegal. The wild and unique PsicoRoc event wants to change that.
by James Lucas, Climbing Magazine
On Tuesday, August 23, the New River Alliance of Climbers (NRAC) held the first ever PsicoRoc competition on the Nuttall sandstone that lines the shores of Summersville Lake near Fayetteville. During humid, 80° conditions, 16 pro climbers from all over the country came to Summersville for this inaugural event to hang with friends, relax on the water, and experience some of the best deep water soloing the United States has to offer. “We have an incredibly unique resource. There are hundreds of areas to go roped climbing in the East, but very few DWS locations,” said local guidebook author and PsicoRoc judge Mikey Williams. With 100 DWS routes from 5.9 to 5.13c, the cliffs range from a relatively safe 30 feet to a scary 70 feet over the water. There’s only one catch—deep water soloing at Summersville Lake is technically illegal.
Actually, the climbing portion is legal, but falling into the water is outlawed.