Bear Mountain is conveniently located very close to the Newfound Lake climbing area and offers a few nice routes for those who don't mind a little more of an approach than the roadside crags offer. If Newfound is crowded on a nice Saturday, you can probably be guaranteed some nice lines here all to yourself ;0)
The rock gully which these climbs form is east facing and very shaded making for some longer season ice at least up to the top portion which can be dry tooled.
From the Newfound Lake crags, go North on West Shore road for a few miles and take a left onto Bear Mountain Road. Drive up the road until you see a road sign for Panorama Road (see photo). Park here and walk up the road left of the sign (not maintained for winter driving) for a few hundred meters. Bear right and make your way through the woods up to the cliff. If you continue walking up the road, you will eventually reach hiking trails that walks you to the top of Bear Mountain and Sugarloaf for nice views of the lake. If you drive up Panorama Road, you can see the ice flow on the left most crag. The big cliff to the right is on private property and does not have any winter routes. The walk through the woods up to the crag takes about a half an hour.
This is the line that goes right under the cave and up to a mixed finish. The climb is in the shade, so freezer effect sets in, and the temperature drops a bit while on route. The climb was actually a bit more exciting that I thought it would be from first glance. It goes up to the hanging icicles and traverses right and up through a corner. At the finish, there was a large plate of junky ice hanging from the top (see photo). I had to knock this off to access the nice crack underneath which...[more]Browse More Classics in NH