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Black Arches Wall

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Adirondack Rehabilitation T 
Amnesia Chasm T 
Amphitheatre Crack T 
Birthday Corner T 
Black Arch ArÍte T 
Broken Broom T 
Carpenter & Das T 
Cranium T 
Critical Crimps T,S 
Crossway T 
Dexter's Dugout T 
Drive T 
E-stim T 
Eatin' Tripe and Lichen It T 
Four Ounces to Freedom S 
Full Recovery T 
Gun Show T 
Hang Time T 
Here I Go Again T 
Impulse Drive T 
Intensive Care T 
Lane Change T 
Outpatient T 
Parallel Passage T 
Pinch an Inch T 
Plumb Line T 
Post Op T 
Recuperation Boulevard T 
Reducto Adductor T 
Renegade T 
Scaredy Cat T 
Second Job T 
Side Show T 
Sleepy Hollow T 
Suicidal Sydney T 
Tilly's Trench T 
Torcher T 
Tribulations T 

Black Arches Wall 


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Administrators: Jim Lawyer, Chris Duca, Kristine Hoffman
Submitted By: Jay Harrison on Oct 18, 2008
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BETA PHOTO: view from the base of plumb line.

Description 

Adirondack backcountry climbing crag with routes ranging from 5.3 to 5.12c, and potential for many more. Height averages about 125'. Faces East. Cliff roughly divisible into six parts, from L to R:
1. An isolated buttress (called the Isobuttress) separated from the Black Arches Wall proper by a bottomless, wet tree gully (location of the ice route Crystal Breeze)
2. BAW Left Side (a.k.a the Amphitheatre), composed of several arching corners and a large overhang with a sharply-defined outside corner on its right side (creating the eponymous black arch),
3. The Tripe Buttress, the left side of which holds Gun Show, the front face having Torcher and the eponymous Eatin' Tripe and Lichen It,
4. The Black Arch Buttress area, aka The Patio, a prow of rock jutting out and dividing the BAW in two, home of Black Arch ArÍte and several crack/chimney lines, including Parallel Passage and Plumb Line,
5. The Low End, the lowest section of cliff, where Critical Crimps and Second Job are,
6. The Right End Buttress, a final, steep, small prow, where several short, hard projects await completion.


Getting There 

~40 minutes: from the trailhead, walk east along the Boulderwoods path, through the Boulderwoods, and follow cairns until one reaches a fern meadow above a large clear-cut area. Slant up the hillside around boulders until the Measles Wall, a heavily pockmarked, low-angle cliff, is sighted. From near the center of the low point of this cliff, a trail runs along and up to a wooded height-of-land near the South Corner Cliffs. Follow this trail along the base of the South Corner Cliffs to where it levels off, crossing an overgrown rockslide area with a "pinnacle" block with a great view partway along it. The path continues through the talus/brush thicket to a short face, where it turns right along the cliff to meet the first climbable rock, the "Isobuttress".
The other sections of the Black Arches Wall are farther along the obvious path.
There are now several anchors for rappel at the "BAW":
One 12' below the top of the Isobuttress; this descent requires 2 rappels using an anchor on a tree at Recuperation Boulevard's belay ledge; an anchor 70' up Adirondack Rehab; or another at the top of E-Stim's first pitch.
In the Amphitheatre, there is an anchor 70' above the start of Broken Broom. This can be used for TRing any of the routes on the main face; directionals are needed for Amphitheatre Crack, Dexter's Dugout, and Impulse Drive.
There is a tree anchor on the top of the cliff, a 60m rope rappel will reach the Broken Broom anchor from it.
There is an anchor at ~100' on Birthday Corner.
There is a 1-bolt anchor at the top of the Tripe Buttress. Class 4 scrambling up the start of Tribulations can reach this.
On the Buttress containing the BAW's namesake route, there is a rappel anchor that requires 70 meter ropes near the top of Black Arch ArÍte. Note that climbers must rappel from above to reach this anchor, i.e. there is no walk-up access.
There is a rappel anchor above and left of Cranium (by the top of the original route line). Walk-up to this anchor is exposed but possible, so it can be used to TR (directionals needed for PP).
There is a rappel anchor near the top of Plumb Line, well below the top of the cliff (no walk-up access).
There is a rappel station around an oak tree at the top of the cliff near Critical Crimps. This can be used to gain the anchors in the Attic. Note that from the tree, 60 meter ropes will just barely reach the "Patio", the ledge where Plumb Line starts. 70 meter ropes do NOT reach the bottom of the cliff from the oak tree.
Directly below this oak tree, in an alcove under a big roof called the "Attic", is a fixed bolt anchor for rappeling with shorter ropes. 60 meter ropes will barely reach the ground from here.


Climbing Season


38 Total Routes


['4 Stars',6],['3 Stars',12],['2 Stars',8],['1 Star',9],['Bomb',2]
['<=5.6',6],['5.7',1],['5.8',10],['5.9',5],['5.10',12],['5.11',3],['5.12',1],['5.13',0],['>=5.14',0],['',0],['<=V1',0],['V2-3',0],['V4-5',0],['V6-7',0],['V8-9',0],['V10-11',0],['V12-13',0],['>=V14',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Black Arches Wall:
E-stim   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Trad, 2 pitches, 135'   
Full Recovery   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Trad, 2 pitches, 140'   
Recuperation Boulevard   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, 1 pitch, 145'   
Carpenter & Das   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 2 pitches, 140'   
Sleepy Hollow   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   
Eatin' Tripe and Lichen It   5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 2 pitches, 130'   
Second Job   5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 1 pitch, 125'   
Parallel Passage   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   
Amphitheatre Crack   5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 125'   
Critical Crimps   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 125'   
Adirondack Rehabilitation   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a R     Trad, 1 pitch, 130'   
Gun Show   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 30'   
Torcher   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 105'   
Broken Broom   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   
Black Arch ArÍte   5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b PG13     Trad, 1 pitch, 120'   
Plumb Line   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   
Hang Time   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c PG13     Trad, 1 pitch, 125'   
Browse More Classics in Black Arches Wall

Featured Route For Black Arches Wall
FA time!

Torcher 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a  NY : Adirondacks : ... : Black Arches Wall
Climb up the wide crack, move left to the narrow crack and climb it to its end, reaching right for good holds and pro; then back left and high (5.10a) for another good hold. Follow a crack up and right to a vertical crack. At good horizontal holds, traverse left 6', then go up into an inverted "V" notch overhang. Climb this via a left-slanting crack on the left side, then make a delicate (5.10a) mantle and up easy rock to anchors on the top of the buttress.Good pro, several exciting mo...[more]   Browse More Classics in NY

Photos of Black Arches Wall Slideshow Add Photo
Jay Harrison putting on an impromptu karate demonstration for the crowd on a rare less than stellar weather day at Crane Mountain!
Jay Harrison putting on an impromptu karate demons...
BAW overview.
BETA PHOTO: BAW overview.
Comments on Black Arches Wall Add Comment
Show which comments
By Chris Duca
Administrator
From: Havertown, PA
Oct 21, 2008

Wow, this area sounds great. When I get back to New England, I'll have to head out there with some bug netting and a tent, and stay for a few days.

Which trail should climbers take to reach this cliff: The one that goes over the mountain, the one that heads north, or the one that heads south?

By Tparis
From: Pottersville,New York
Aug 29, 2009

Chris, The BAW is accessed from the trail that goes through the middle of the boulderwoods. The trail starts just past the wooden guardrail in the parking lot. It is pretty well marked with cairns.

By Jay Harrison
Sep 10, 2009

I uploaded some pictures from FA-Day:Plumb Line, and posted them in an article on My Website
The photos on that page link to larger-scale versions.

By kenr
Aug 7, 2012

There is now a new trail up to the SouthEast area (from a different start point along the access road) which is shorter more direct, than going thru Boulderwoods from the main Crane Mt Trailhead parking.
(I leave it to the local experts to decide how to give details for this.)

By Jim Lawyer
Administrator
Aug 8, 2012

kenr: The *only* public access to the south side of Crane Mountain is via the Crane Mountain parking area at the end of Sky High Road.

The approach you mention requires that you park and cross private property. Several locals have permission from the land owner, but be aware that this approach is private. And, yes, it's about 10 minutes shorter.

By Steve Hazel
From: Logan, NJ
5 days ago

Climbed at BAW on 8-17. Area Map is spot on - thanks to everyone for making this area easy to find. There are some great climbs here and most routes are pretty well cleaned. Trail starts right at end of parking lot fence and is clearly marked with cairns though some trees have fallen onto the trail and you'll have to scramble over them. The path stays consistently clear with a few subtle turns to other walls along the way. One turn to avoid (if you're headed to BAW) is shortly after the "fern meadow" there is a trail that turns sharp right and down into a wet area. Not sure if this is the trail coming up from private property or not.

By Jim Lawyer
Administrator
3 days ago

Steve, that sharp right turn goes to the road and is indeed a shortcut through private property that some locals use (with permission from the landowner).