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.
Big, mean, and foreboding--Phase III delivers the goods in one nasty pitch of body-thrutching hatred. Put on your ratty dungarees, tape up, and send.
Phase III begins to the right of Son of a Mother in the obvious off-width crack, and continues for 90 feet in the same crack. The crux comes--like many routes on this cliff--at about 2/3 height. It involves moving through an overhanging corner sans discernible feet.
Finish up easier terrain to chain anchors.
The left side of the cliff. At the height of the climbers trail, go left about 100 yards and locate the obvious offwidth of Phase 3.
A nice size rack with several #2, #3, and #4 Camalots.
A rack from .3-#1 C4 size plus double BD 3s and a BD 3.5 worked pretty well for me on this. The second roof and the corner leading up to it is really a 3.5 size crack. 3 is just a little wide and I think a 4 would be hard to fit in. Double 3.5 would have been ideal.
I feel like it's more a wide-hands to fist crack at the crux than off-width?
By Chris Duca Administrator From: Havertown, PA Jul 10, 2011
I agree about it being wide hands rather than off-width. I'm going to be over there a couple days this week, so I'll have to get back on it to see which way I quiver my way up it!
To me, off-width means "larger than fists". If you have small hands, then this qualifies. Otherwise, it's "off-hands", meaning cups or fists. Whatever -- it's splitting hairs. Suffice to say that it's an awkward size and protects well with 3" - 4" cams.
I found I needed a lot of #3 camalots for the crux section, #4s would immediately get overcammed and there was a jammed #4 camalot. The end didn't protect well after the crux from what I remember, plus being so pumped, it was scary. My fist fit well sideways, thumbs down and twisting. Really cool route, a bit scary had I known I would need to slide my #3 up with me as I climbed :s