Access to the Main Face is often limited in the spring and summer due to peregrine falcon nesting. Check the DEC web site (www.dec.ny.gov, search for "peregrine route closures"). Closures are posted in the kiosk at the beginning of the approach trail in the (now closed) Poke-O Campground.
Several recent incidents at the Poke-O Moonshine Main Face have heightened tensions with neighboring landowners.
Shortcut Trail (aka the Smitty Trail): The main approach goes from the (now closed) campground to the cliff near Discord. There is a shortcut trail on the right that provides access to the cliff near Pentecostal. This shortcut trail crosses the edges of two parcels of private land, and was closed in the spring of 2014. As of Aug 30, 2014, this trail is open on a tentative basis. Stay on the trail; there are some cairns and Access Fund signage to help.
Northern Trail Closure (aka the Easy Living Trail): There is an old trail that connects US 9 with the cliff near Psalm 32. This trail is entirely on private land and should NOT be used by climbers; indeed, it has been closed and undocumented for many years. Both ends of this trail are now marked with signs courtesy of the Access Fund.
In short, while visiting the Main Face, approach from the campground, and stay on the main trail along the base of the cliff.
This information is a public crowdsourcing effort between the Access Fund,
and Mountain Project. You should confirm closures, restrictions, and/or related dates.
The first pitch is very popular, but unfortunately, the rest is a mystery to most. If the top pitch of this otherwise fun climb would clean up, it might be worthy of 4 stars. Like most or the other routes on the Pilgrim Wall, three very different pitches, with an exposed, final hanging corner. DO IT!
P1: Up the face, trending right past many bolts, aiming for a crack. Follow the crack (5.7) up to a beautiful ledge with a 2 bolt anchor. 5.10c
P2: Move left off the belay into a left facing corner with a crack. Follow the crack and face up to a lone bolt below another left facing shallow corner. Protect well with smallish gear, make some pumpy moves, and gain a small ledge with a 2 bolt anchor. 5.9+
P3: Beautiful moves up and right, passing bolts, aiming for the hanging corner above. Make a hard entry move into the corner, and then stem and face climb your way up the corner (dirty), with small stoppers as protection, to a grassy ledge with another 2 bolt anchor. 5.10c
The leftmost bolted face on the Pilgrim Wall, about 5 feet right of the dirty start to It Don't Come Easy.
Bolts and a full rack up to a #2 Camalot. RP's advisable also.
This is awesome route. Do NOT let the description deter you from P2 & P3. I did this soon after it was first bolted, and did not think in was dirty. Besides, if you want clean go to Gunks. The approach and entry into the final corner on P3 is incredible. IMO, this IS a 4 star route.
A few thoughts after a couple of trips up this fine route, including one very recent ascent:
-P1 is very solid in the grade. I routinely lead considerably harder, really enjoy technical, thin face, and find this pitch rather difficult.
-P2 is also very fun, but has some large, quite hollow blocks which one climbs over and through down low, and in which it is tempting to protect. Any gear in this rock should be considered questionable. The moves past the 2 bolts are interesting and pleasant. There is some suspect rock on the steeper finishing section of the pitch as well, and the pro through this section is not especially straightforward. 5.9+ PG seems fair. Definitely not a pitch to stick your fledgling 5.9 leader on.
-P3 is excellent, protects well, and as of 2 days ago, is reasonably clean. All the holds one needs are clean, in any case.
A great route.
Rack: Single set from blue Mastercam to #1 Camalot; single set of small to medium wires, including some RPs; draws and slings; 1 60m cord.
By Chris Duca Administrator From: Havertown, PA Jul 13, 2012 rating: 5.10d6b+21VII+21E3 5b
Got on the first pitch of this today, and, like the aforementioned comment by Derek, I find this pitch extremely stout in the grade (read: add a letter grade, or two), despite having climbed it many times. Nevertheless, it is fun as hell!