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September 21, 2016

The Grotto | Vermont

Made famous by social media videos of the one hundred plus foot jumps by mad men, Rock Of Ages and The Grotto have become somewhat of a Mecca for Cliff Jumpers.

Holding down a top spot on most jumpers’ bucket list, this stone playground stands above the rest.

Interestingly enough, several quarries located around the property remain operational. However, the ones completely harvested of their marble have filled with water leaving tourists to visit, take pictures, and enjoy the scenery. In addition, the clear cut trails are moderately steep from time to time.

The only catch: it’s illegal to be in the water of any of the quarries located on the Rock Of Ages property. Nevertheless, many people risk the ticket and swim- if you are one of these people be sure to always swim the water out for hidden structures and debris. Quarries are incredibly dangerous swimming locations with deep water and nearly invisible hazards.

In great spirits we woke up and unzipped our tents. The sun rays, shining through the foliage of the Northern Hardwoods, told us the day held great promise. We ate breakfast, hydrated, and checked all of our gear. Piling into the 4 Runner, we turned on the Big Swings App and searched, “The Grotto.” We followed the navigation 1.2 miles to our destination.

Excitement pulsing through the group and trash bags in our hands, we entered the quarries.

Everyone was ready to send-it off some big cliffs. The entire trip had been designed around this location! We gave ourselves two days to explore the area and hit everything we could on the property. 

Arriving at our destination, the group was in awe of the massive quarry that lay before us. Grey vertical walls reflected against the still, blue waters; the cliffs reached up to the sky making even the most skilled jumpers take a deep breath and rethink everything.

After a good check for debris, hidden rebar, and underwater ledges we sent-it one by one, two by two, and even three by three into the water. We worked around the different points of interest and jumped off everything we could. Leaving the biggest jumps for day two, we stuck to the smaller side of the quarry with cliffs spanning from 2’ to 67’.

Unfortunately, on day two, when we went after the 110’ and 72’ cliffs, the property owners

were on the site, and we walked right into them. Consequently, that section of property was being used for a magazine shoot, and we were led off the property with haste. Only certain sections of Rock Of Ages are accessible for public use; this was not one of them. Along with not being legal and being completely on private property, these cliffs are no joke. A mistake here means death. Don’t mess around with these cliffs unless you’re a professional.

At the same time, we met some really amazing people. Jacob Greene from Connecticut had driven with his best friends to spend a few days enjoying this area as well. He and his friends helped us clean up the area. We removed all the old beer cans and trash from the swimming hole. People like Jacob make this community grow in the best way. Thanks Jacob and crew!

Even though we weren’t able to jump the big ones, we were stoked with our trip up to The Grotto. In the end, it’s not always about the biggest jump or the most dangerous trick. Cliff Jumping is about the feeling of being free and alive, and that’s exactly how we all felt.Grotto Pano

Trail- Moderate, 1.5 miles

Depth- Incredibly Deep

Water- Fresh Water, Spring

Heights- 2’ – 110’

Pollution- Moderate

Facilities- None

Parking- Easy

Thanks to Serac Hammocks, GraniteRox OutDoor Accessories, Kingii Safety Devices, Adventuresque Vacations, and Ix’Chel Dream Boots for making this article and trip possible. Check out these amazing brands and products for great deals we guarantee you need.