Archive for the ‘Starbuck’ Category

2016 Rock Season Recap

Tuesday, November 14th, 2017

This is a post that sat in the Drafts pile for over a year.

Several places to review for 2016; sadly many of them are not-yet ready for disclosure. Expect changes in the next couple years to reveal what amounts to several years of activity.

Crane Mountain

This one won’t go down in the record books, at least not for Crane Mountain or me. It wasn’t a bad year, as things go, with a sprinkling of decent new routes, a lot of cleanup, and it seems, Crane’s continuing evolution into climbers’ consciousness as a bona fide Adirondack destination. But many projects remain uncompleted, and the nagging suspicion that 2017 will not provide ample opportunity to remedy that situation personally lends the past year’s efforts an air of unfulfilled frustration.

There are many things to be thankful for, and a few noteworthy, if not newsworthy, tasks accomplished.

Prominent among the good memories are the many new faces I met here on the mountain this year. As already noted, Crane seems to be getting more climber traffic each year, and increasingly, these climbers are strangers to me. This was not the case in the “old days”, when I introduced most comers to the mountain. I have a bevy of friends I’ve made here through those introductions, but now I find myself making new ones while passing through. These are not only friends of friends or indirect acquaintances; they are people who’ve heard about the mountain through the Guidebook or websites like Mountainproject.

A climber on the footwork-intensive route Action Steps

A climber on the footwork-intensive route Action Steps

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Another Starbuck Run

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Steve powers up Banana Almond Bread

Steve powers up Banana Almond Bread

Another brief run to Starbuck awards us with even better ice, and this time some company joining in the fun. Tom, Steve, and I made a midweek trip to the now-familiar parking spot on the side of Route 28 and, after an extended delay (don’t ask), headed in to Starbuck Right once again.

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First Trip to Starbuck Avec Comparison Pix

Wednesday, January 20th, 2016
Paul on the early thin ice of Dark Roast

Paul on the early thin ice of Dark Roast

In the flurry to post several late entries, I missed a couple, one of which was mentioned in another article in the batch put out yesterday – but not published itself. Hence this late addition. In order to lend some true usefulness to this tardy edition, photos taken on our last trip are included for comparison. Likely, conditions are even better now.

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Starbuck with Steve

Tuesday, January 19th, 2016
Steve climbs the thin smear lying along the right edge of O'Ryan's Belt

Steve climbs the thin smear lying along the right edge of O’Ryan’s Belt

With a serious thaw between, I should add. The ice at Starbuck has rebounded well from the New Year’s thaw, and was better than ever when Steve O and I passed through last Thursday.

We were able to set up TRs and run down the line, right to left, skipping only Cool Beans. I managed to get up five runs, Steve made six, before our arms were shot and our time run out. That makes close to 350’ of steep ice for me, about 400’ for Steve, all in less than five hours car-to-car. Starbuck has certainly turned into a good choice for time-limited ice days.

We began on O’Ryan’s Belt, which has yet to see a lead; not surprising, since the pro would be sketchy at best. The initial ten feet is extremely sketchy, almost naked slab. Realistically, it’s the crux of the route, though the ensuing thirty feet to a first possible – and none-too-good – ice screw doesn’t seem easy, either. The small comfort of the bolt above the bottom slab wouldn’t help for long, though it might be backed up by a cam or sling in the slot above it, for an additional three feet of safety. In any case, we chose, like everyone else so far, to rely on a rope from above.

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2015 Climbing Year in Review

Thursday, January 7th, 2016

Ice on the Early Side – Ditto for Late

There is little to tell about ice climbing in the January – March side of 2015. For various reasons, I would only climb ice a total of 11 times, so I wasn’t in on a lot of the action. I was able to direct many folks to the pleasantries of the Waterfall Wall, Fifi’s Frozen Fingers, and Providence, so Crane didn’t get left out in the cold (pun intended)

Lukasz on an early top-rope run of his project Polish Roast, which he led successfully early in 2015. Congratulations!

Lukasz on an early top-rope run of his project Polish Roast, which he led successfully early in 2015. Congratulations!

The lone bright light in an otherwise dim FA season is Lucas Czyz’ send of his longtime project, Polish Roast. At M7, it is one of the more difficult mixed routes in the Southern Adirondacks.

The Big Split as Lukasz approaches the finish line of Polish Roast. The hardest climbing lies just before reaching the ice.

The Big Split as Lukasz approaches the finish line of Polish Roast. The hardest climbing lies just before reaching the ice.

The Late-Year Ice season did not exist for 2015. Warm temperatures remained well after Christmas, with never a long-enough cold spell to form sane quantities of ice.

The Waterfall Wall as it looked on New Year's Day, never having iced up enough in December to climb.

The Waterfall Wall as it looked on New Year’s Day, never having iced up enough in December to climb.

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Ice Season: November and December 2013

Friday, January 17th, 2014

Jekyll & Hyde couldn’t be happier with this season’s weather. We’ve had extended bouts of wickedly-cold weather, bounded by bursts of springtime warmth, which usually involved lots of rain. Which always meant severe deterioration of the ice. We have not been stymied however. It has been a decent season so far. (more…)