Mountain Project Logo
To save paper & ink, use the [Hide] controls next to photos and comments so you only print what you need.

Power Play

WI4-5, Ice, 220 ft, 3 pitches,  Avg: 3.9 from 20 votes
FA: 1979 (escape right at top) Mark Meschinelli, Pat Munn; upper column FA unknown
New York > Adirondacks > Adirondack Ice… > D: Keene Valley… > Chapel Pond

Description

In my opinion (and most everyone who is a local Adirondacker will agree), this is one of the best and most classic ice climbs in the Dacks. Most parties begin in the tight chimney, the rightmost of the three good ramp options. One long pitch (or two if belaying at the obvious ledge) continues either straight up the fearsome middle tier (5 or 5+), or up the obvious ramp right to a much briefer steep section leading to the pillar belay. Set the belay at the base of the final pillar where there is plenty of big fat ice in a semi-cave structure behind the pillar. The last pitch is short and steep in the 4+ range. There are plenty of trees at the top to build an anchor. This is a sought-after climb, so an early start can sometimes mean the difference of getting the climb.

Two 60-meter ropes are required for the standard rappel, though there is a slung cedar in the main drainage about 80' from the top. We didn't use the cedar.

Alternatively, hike left to a short down climb above Penalty Shot (stay roped for this short gully). A tree rappel of 165' leads directly to the base. This was pretty easy and I would recommend using this option.

Location

Located in the Chapel Pond area off of route 73. Look for Chapel Pond and park in one of the dirt pull offs. Look across the pond and you will see the long hanging blue pillar that finishes Power Play. Walk across the pond to the base of the climb.

If anyone needs a place to stay, the Snow Goose Lodge is a great climbers lodge, and if you're really desperate, my house is about 4 miles up the road.

Protection

Plenty of screws if combining the first two pitches. There is rock gear on the first pitch (nuts and cams to #0.75 Camalot).

At the top belay, tucked to the left of the column against the rock, is a bomber green Alien and/or similar-sized nut placement.

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

Power Play Wall
[Hide Photo] Power Play Wall
Climber on the steep central pillar (5+) of Power Play.
[Hide Photo] Climber on the steep central pillar (5+) of Power Play.
Climbers on the direct middle section of Power Play.
[Hide Photo] Climbers on the direct middle section of Power Play.
power play
[Hide Photo] power play
This is from Chapel Pond looking at Power Play, it was snowing pretty hard when we did it this year but the ice was in phenomenal shape.
[Hide Photo] This is from Chapel Pond looking at Power Play, it was snowing pretty hard when we did it this year but the ice was in phenomenal shape.
2/8/17
[Hide Photo] 2/8/17
Power Play
[Hide Photo] Power Play
Power Play - Fat Conditions in February 2009
[Hide Photo] Power Play - Fat Conditions in February 2009
Power Play in early March
[Hide Photo] Power Play in early March

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

Jim Lawyer

  WI5
[Hide Comment] I always belay left of the final column, in a left-facing corner, tucked behind the free-hanging daggers above. This protects me from falling ice on the final pillar, as well as the daggers above.

For P2, there is an alternate finish about 30' further right. It usually forms as a single, yellow pillar, and is more difficult than the standard finish (steeper, no rests, and not usually hacked out). Dec 4, 2017