Archive for May, 2012

Saturday, May, Crane: Bugs, Bums, Buds, and Bruises

Thursday, May 24th, 2012

Another busy Saturday on Crane: not only were there 3 intrepid climbers already ensconsed on the mountain, more were coming. I wasn’t exactly sure how many would show up, but no matter, it would be enough to have a lot of fun.

Ben on Yodellaybackloon
Ben on Yodellaybackloon

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FA #6 for 2012

Thursday, May 24th, 2012

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Mike Prince on his 1st attempt at his project. 

Last weekend saw another outpouring of activity on the mountain. A bunch of people clambered upon those southeast slopes despite the onset of blackflies, climbing several favorites old and new and installing yet one more route at the Measles Walls, this one on the festively-named Top’o’the Measles Wall, which lies just above the right shoulder of the Upper Measles Wall.

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Sackets Harbor

Monday, May 21st, 2012

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Our 30th anniversary trip brought us eventually to the Thousand Islands region, approximately the point where Lake Ontario feeds into the St. Lawrence River and downriver (northeast) for another fifty miles or so. After a lot of driving (and our stop at Eagle Falls), we passed an unremarkable night in Watertown, then moved on to the first stop along our St. Lawrence odyssey, Sackets Harbor.
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Catch-Up and Other Condiments

Monday, May 14th, 2012

Rock Season rushes along. I’m starting to get behind in covering the “goings-on hereabouts” so here is a brief summary of the past week or so. This doesn’t include a run to Fish Mountain, which (obviously) has its own post, nor Eagle Falls (ditto), and there is nary a mention of our trip (which I hope to cover in separate installments).

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Ra tries out Val’s new route, Yodellaybackloon.

While Ra & I plied the waters of the Thousand Islands, Val came out to Crane and sent her project, the attractive right-facing corner right of Oddy’s Crack of Horror. She dubbed it Yodellaybackloon, it registers in at 5.6 and definitely wants big cams. Think everything from Camalot C4 size 1 to 5, maybe even six if you’re timid on the sharp end. Ra & I climbed it on Saturday, and it’s a fine addition. Congratulations to Val on her first official FA!

That same day (Sunday May 6th) was yet another Crane Mountain Group Day. I heard that in addition to Val and Kevin, Keith, Lukasz Czyz, Michael Gray, and Tom Lane were also there climbing. I don’t regret our trip, but I do miss you guys and these times on the mountain!

I spent much of Thursday working on a new project, or rather, a renewed project. Tom and I climbed a rather unpleasant chimney/cave system on the left side of the amphitheatre last year, escaping out of the darkness onto the face about fifty feet up. The upper pitch we did seemed good enough to make into a route, but our starting pitch was not pretty. I’ve found an alternative that combines to make one of the better multipitch routes at the BAW. Hopefully, more on this shortly…

Yesterday, Tom Rosecrans made his annual pilgrimage to Crane, dragging Lake Placid Rock guide Royce along. I played tour guide for the day, showing them to a few of the routes put in since Tom’s last visit, and a route or two he hadn’t yet done. Pictures say it better, so here’s the rundown of our activities:

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We warmed up on Stairway to Heaven’s first two pitches. Tom led the show.

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Royce then led Moe-hammed, Larry, & Curly.

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Royce is nearing the finish line.

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Tom followed Royce up the route.

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We all took a TR lap on Long Play. Here, Tom throws for the foothold.
Interestingly, Royce found an alternative start, utilizing a freshly-revealed foothold.

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We then headed to Amphitheatre Crack. Tom took first shot at the lead.

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Royce finished it off. We then TR’d Broken Broom before calling it a day.

Fish Mountain

Monday, May 14th, 2012

Neal Knitel and I have been trying to climb together for almost two decades. We finally pulled it off last Friday when, along with Tom Lane, we met at a crag near Lake Pleasant that Neal discovered recently, a short way up the side of Fish Mountain.

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Neal Knitel styling up the face route on Fish Mountain

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Eagle Falls

Saturday, May 5th, 2012

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Heading for the Thousand Islands, we chose to swing by Eagle Falls, an area I’ve wanted to visit since I saw the pictures in the latest guidebook. In this case, “swing” meant a long, roundabout trip from the east, driving twisty, winding roads through Big Moose, past one “ROAD CLOSED” sign, dozens of scary LOGGING TRUCKS! signs, around potholes reminiscent of WWI trench warfare, a coyote, and a turkey to get there. No matter, it was time well spent, both in reaching the destination and in giving said locale time to dry.

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