RUST Small Harbor Monument Guide

An in-depth guide and walkthrough of the RUST Small Harbor Monument

The first glimpse of concept art for this smaller-style harbor monument dates back to Devblog 111 in May 2016. Originally designed to give fresh spawns taller crane towers to navigate from, Small Harbor is at the lowest end of difficulty concerning RUST monuments

This guide provides detailed information about the Small Harbor monument. It enables you to identify basic facts quickly and helps you prepare, access, and successfully run the monument while providing insight into the different types of loot, NPCs, and environmental variables you may encounter.

For information related to player-operated Tugboats, please refer to our RUST Tugboat Guide.

Monument Features Checklist

Barrels ~50
Crates ~12
Drone Market
Hackable Crate
Keycard Lootable✅ 1 Blue Keycard
Keycard Puzzle Green Keycard Puzzle
Mission NPCs
Recycler 1
Repair Bench
Research Table
Site Specific FeaturesPublic Small Oil Refinery, High Fuel Barrel Count, Underground Train Tunnel Entrance, Public Telephone, Tugboat Spawns, Cargo Event Location, Swing Span Bridge

Monument Overview

An overview of the Small Harbor Monument

The game visual translation of this monument is much like one would expect. It is a three-pier port with an outer warehouse pier and a connecting swing-span bridge system, complete with large cranes, ample buildings and structures for all your storage needs, large hangers, and flatbed trucks. Players will find four permanently placed watercraft that can also spawn goodies on their own between the piers and towards the bounds of the outer warehouse pier.

The Small Harbor monument, much like the Junkyard, is populated with loot in a less-than-consistent manner. Barrels, in particular, can spawn in numerous places and, at times, be quite difficult to track down. Boxes and crates, on the other hand, are more consistent in their placement yet sporadic in their spawn rate.

Depending on the population of the server being played, a Small Harbor can appear to the untrained eye to be quite sparse in resources or an absolute treasure trove to those who are persistent in searching or know where to look.

Preparing for the Small Harbor Monument

The Small Harbor monument and its larger counterpart received a rather large update in April of 2024, ushering in a new era of use and function for these monuments. For the Small Harbor, in particular, the before-dangerous recycler outset on the end of a pier was brought slightly further inland. It now has more cover, making it slightly more ideal than before for recycling. 

After running off-shore monuments and events like the Cargo Ship (with its new docking feature) or the Large and Small Oil Rigs, this monument should now see an increase in end-game recycling activity. The appearance of an RHIB docked near the ladder closest to the recycler is almost always a sure sign that it is unsafe to venture towards.

That being said, the Small Harbor is completely void of hazards such as radiation or scientists (when Cargo Ship isn’t dock) and has an assortment of light switches that pulse for easier visibility that can be turned on at night for limited lighting. Regardless of gear level or experience, any RUST player can enter the Small Harbor completely naked and loot its vast treasures. 

It is an excellent monument for acquiring a bit of early-game scrap and provisions. Still, it is typically heavily frequented, especially early in a wipe, due to its easy-to-acquire Blue Keycard that larger groups and clans need to complete harder puzzles.

Because this isn’t a safe zone monument, players should be aware that open-world PVP does take place, and they are just as likely to find a bullet to the back as they are a crate with resources. As with any non-safe venture, check out our Best RUST Armor Combinations Guide to maximize your chances of survival. As demonstrated in countless streamer clips, even the most geared player will likely die here to a well-placed double-barrel grub.

Running the Small Harbor Monument

Non-Pier Areas

Underground Train Tunnel Entrance

The entrance to the Underground Train Tunnels

The Small Harbor monument has an underground train tunnel terminal located inland between a large inaccessible tower and the Blue Keycard puzzle. You can check out more information about this from our January 8th update back in 2021.

Blue Keycard

The Blue Keycard building in the Small Harbor monument

Just across from the underground train entrance is the Blue Keycard puzzle. This two-story structure emblazoned with D11 on the bottom level and H2 on the top is one of the simpler keycard monument puzzles, requiring only a Green Keycard and Electric Fuse to access. This is a highly contested, heavily farmed item early in the wipe.

Players with these two items need only go to the first floor, find the sparking electrical box on the wall, input the fuse, and flip the switch. From there, a simple jaunt back outside and up the stairs brings you to the Keypad access point. Simply equip said Green Keycard and swipe for temporary access to this loot room. 

A Blue Keycard inside the puzzle building

On the desk, you will (other players willing) have a Blue Keycard, flanked immediately by a few loot boxes.

Small Center Shack

A small shack in the center of the monument

Almost in the center of the land portion of the monument, near some junk piles full of used tires, is a small, unassuming double-entrance shack. This area is known to house a crate or two and a few barrels. It is an ideal area for grubs to camp with a double barrel, so mind yourself wandering through this area.

Loading Hanger

The loading hangar with a train

Opposite the underground rail entrance, a large red loading hanger occupies much of the monument’s real estate. This area has assorted barrels and boxes scattered about, with some on the back of the flatbed truck and a few occupying space on the tail end of train cars.

This area is partially partitioned from the rest of the monument by concrete walls with tire jump-ups for PVP purposes.

Pier Areas

Pier 1 (Recycler, Swing Span Bridge)

Small Harbor Monument's Swing Span Bridge

Working from the underground train entrance onward, we start with what we will call Pier 1. This pier is a massive concrete protrusion that extends out to a shipping path recently added to house the Cargo Ship Docking Event. Before the April ‘24 change, this area was broken into two individual piers, but the span between them has since been filled in, and three tractor-trailers are now parked where the ocean once existed.  Also on this pier are 3 bird’s nest towers, 3 miniature huts, an over-track cargo loading swingarm, and a brand-new crane used during the cargo ship event to load and unload crates.

Pier 2 (Small Oil Refinery)

Pier 2 at the Small Harbor Monument holds the Small Oil Refinery

One pier over, players will find access to a public Small Oil Refinery. On fresh wipe, this refinery will come pre-loaded with 100 pieces of Wood until someone uses it or removes it. With the abundance of red fuel barrels, it’s common practice for players to load up this refinery and cool Crude Oil into Low Grade Fuel as they go. 

Because of the nature of RUST, any player can access this refinery, meaning that using it does not guarantee that someone won’t steal it. In PVP terms, this could be viewed as a good place to camp. Caution is advised.

Further down the pier is a small container building with a door, where you can find loot crates inside.

Pier 3

Pier 4 Overhead View

Finally, we reach the last landlocked, probably most loot-barren pier. With the April 2024 update, this pier’s overall barrel count decreased dramatically, from roughly 9 to around 5. Furthermore, all tugboat locations and floating barges were moved out to the watersedge boundary of the new floating pier, accessible via the Swing Span Bridge.

Pier 4 (Both Tugboats)

An overhead view of the Tugboats at the Small Harbor Monument

Coming as a fresh addition circa 2024, the new outer floating pier is an island unto itself.  It is segregated from the original Small Harbor area by the Swing Span Bridge, but is reachable via other means such as boat or swimming across. This area packs quite a lot into a rather small area, so we will fragment the newer content into subsections to adequately break down the new content and the new dangers players checking it out will face.

Pier Checkpoint (1 Tugboat)

Pier Checkpoint 1

Venturing across the new bridge brings you to what we’re calling the Checkpoint, complete with a traffic-jamming drop arm, ticket booth, and other structures and obstructions. Two larger buildings are present, but neither interior section is accessible now. Two sets of concrete stairs lead players to a lower-tier pier area that may spawn lootable barrels. This introductory area doesn’t have an overabundance of resources but boasts a few places to hide with a weapon.

A floating barge just off the pier’s edge can house a single crate outside, sometimes a military crate or another within a red trailer on its top. A Tugboat can also spawn next to this barge if it is able.

The Wall

The Wall

Just beyond the Checkpoint, we find what appears to be a defensive structure made of assorted shipping containers, boxes, barrels, and trash. While the loot to be had on the wall is minimal, there is no shortage of places to wait for other explorers to bring their loot to you. Parkouring your way around, you will find multiple ways to either climb over the wall (barbed wire willing) or exit to the next area in our coverage.

Back Alley

The Back Alley

Currently, there is no way to enter the main building structures on this pier. That being said, there is quite a bit of loot for those who wander around or on top of them. The Back Alley area faces the ocean and is a good place to scout which Tugboats are available, as both should be visible from here. A crate and barrel may spawn here, and the side of the building is accessible by taking a ramp from The Wall near here to explore the next portion of this guide.


The Rooftops

What’s a building without a view, right?  Despite this pier’s rugged, unpolished exterior, quite the view can be had from the top of the two adjoined large buildings at its center. On the first rooftop, we come to the closest to the Swing Bridge; players will find plenty of places to duck and cover from enemy fire and a wonderful place to fight from. There is a single crate on this rooftop, with a set of wide-gapped stairs that lead to a zipline that will take you back down to the Checkpoint. Should you intend to continue, a large flight of stairs and a small roof jump lead you to the other large building rooftop. Also on this intermediary roof is another zipline that will take you directly down to the dual crane loading area.  More on that in a minute

Like its predecessor, this second larger roof area is chock-full of convenient hiding places. It also has a single crate that will spawn with some loot but not much else. Yet another zipline will carry players down toward one of the loading cranes for the new Cargo Ship Event, and a side-building stair system will bring you down to…

Small Pier / Sinking Barge

The Small Pier and Sinking Barge

Another small pier and a sinking barge. This area is almost completely void of lootable crates or barrels, but it is the primary way you would access the second player-controllable tugboat. If a tugboat isn’t what you’re looking for, we round out this tour with our final location to cover.

Dual Crane Loading Area

The Dual Crane Loading Area

At the end of the journey, we finally have a monument living up to its namesake, with functional new cranes that load and unload loot when the Cargo Ship docks. The crane closest to the sinking barge is a boundary marker for the ship coming in and will only move when the Cargo leaves the dock.  Right next to that is the platform from the large roof where you’d zipline. The front face of the building is fairly void of crates or barrels to loot, as is the backside of the Wall now visible. The real appeal here is the central, most lowered dock area.  

On the ground, there are large white chalked squares that read Cargo Drop Off. When the Cargo Ship docks, two large red shipping containers appear on these spots.  These shipping crates have openable doors that players may use to sneak into and hide. The large crane just beside this pier will then pick these boxes up and load them onto the Cargo Ship. This adds a whole new dimension to sneaking onto cargo with a new, virtually silent method. Alternatively, we guess you could jump onto it from the dock, but where’s the fun in that?


While being a staple in the realm of RUST for many years, developers have promised to do fresh updates of all existing monuments in the coming years. Regardless, this low-tier monument provides RUST players with new and exciting places to explore and engage in PVP combat and ample opportunities to gather loot. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the Large Harbor monument as well.

We will do our best to keep the information in this guide updated and accurate. Don’t hesitate to contact us in Discord if you need any details or have any unanswered questions; we’re happy to get the answers you need.

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About No Limit Llama

An aspiring woodworker and web designer. Father, husband, and Rust veteran. Llama has written op-eds and official game documents for over two decades. The earliest writings were on Asheron’s Call, followed by World of Warcraft and eventually Rust. The vast majority of his indoor time is spent running Rust servers or helping friends with their Rust-related projects. He enjoys working around the house, continuing his education when time permits, and creating new processes to simplify activities of daily living for his friends and family. He has an incredible wife, a dog, three children, and one granddaughter.

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