A Touch of Class
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Scott Arno leads P1 of A Touch of Class(5.9+) at M...
A Touch of Class is the one of the many proud lines that soar up Moss Cliff. The essence of this climb is the squeeze chimney capping the fingery crux of the climb. Be ready for sustained climbing in an airy position. On the final pitch you can choose to climb the thin crack out to the right at 5.10, but it doesn't get a lot of traffic so the lichen and dirt may be a bit impeding.
Near the center of the cliff is a wide flake/crack. Just to the right of this obvious feature is the first pitch crack. Climb this past a troublesome section about midway, then find a comfortable belay out to the right on a nice, small ledge. 5.9+ / 100 feet
Above, climb the thin finger crack in lower-angled rock to the crux finish right below a nice island of trees. Be AwareYou will finish at the tree ledge with a sizeable boulder/flake. Above you will be the left-facing corner of Aerie (5.10b). Thrash through some bushy tree shrubs to the right to reach the beginning of the 3rd pitch belay for TOC. 5.9 / 60 feet
Layback the finger crack in the left-facing corner until it opens up into a squeeze chimney. Try not to get your torso stuck in here. Finish over a small bulge in a handcrack to easier ground which takes you to a scenic, rectangular belay ledge with bolts. Strenous 5.9 / 100 feet
Finish above in a nice, but short handcrack. Take this to the trees, fight through these then finish on easier ground to the top of the cliff. 5.8 / 100 feet
Alternately, one can take the finger crack out to the right. This path requires some patience, and a deft ability to clean while you climb. Be prepared for some dirt climbing with less than optimal gear at the very top of this alternate last pitch. Good, but needs a serious enema. 5.10 / 100 feet.
A Touch of Class is located near the left/center of the cliff. Look for the wide flake/crack. The start of the route will be on the right of this feature.
A wide array of gear is necessary to complete this route. Carry along a full set of cams to #4 Camalot-size (doubles on middle sizes), plus a good assortment of stoppers and RPs. Two cordolettes with several lockers are also a good idea. Two ropes are mandatory if you intend to rappel the route.
From: Keene Valley, NY
Apr 6, 2011
I thought the crux was transitioning from the layback crack to the chimney on P3. Certainly one of the best routes of that length and grade in the northeast.
By Nick Weinberg
From: Essex, NY
Apr 8, 2011
I recommend linking the first two pitches of this climb. This is much better than the first pitch of Hard Times, to basically get to the same place.
By kurt hoelter
Sep 9, 2012
one of the best routes this labor day weekend out of many classics. varied techniques, quality rock, and airy, solid belays combined for a memorable day. highly recommended. rap off dodgy as there are no fixed bolts at the 2d belay. traverse to hard times station hard.