The Spider's Web Rock Climbing
Matt McCormick working Wheelin N' Dealin
The Web needs very little introduction. The visual one gets of this diamond as it sits high above the West side of Route 73 is enough to both silence Web neophytes and evoke long diatribes of banter from locals and those who've only visited a few times.
This gently overhanging, crack-riddled face is home to the highest concentration of sustained Adirondack test-pieces. Aesthetic lines such as "It's Only Entertainment" (11c), "Fear and Loathing in Keene Valley" (11b), "Esthesia" (Dacks 9+), "TR" (10-), and "Zabba" (13b) are among the best crack climbs in the Northeast, hands down, and all stand testament that climbers have been--and still are--cranking hard in the Northeast. If you've never been here before, be prepared for a big pump as many of the grades are of the traditional, old-school variety. (One should note that Henry Barber's name is attached to many of the classics on this cliff.)
It is peculiar, however, that such an array of high quality crack climbs sees very little traffic on splitter days throughout the climbing season. It is a great choice on crispy Spring and Fall days, as it receives a plethora of sun, plus it dries out quickly due to its' steep orientation. But whatever the reason or reasons for it's sleepiness, let it remain that way, as the Web is a magical place with cosmic lines on some of the best Rock in the Northeast.
Head North along Route 73 from The New York Thruway (Route 87) into Keene Valley. You will pass Chapel Pond on the left after about 10 minutes of driving. Start looking for a small pull-off on the right afte about 1/8 of a mile next to a guardrail beneath the cliff. Alternately, you can park across the street from the cliff in the campground area parking lot.
Hike down the climbers trail marker by the "Grimpers" sign, through and then up the talus field. There is no designated trail or blazes once you get onto the talus proper, just stay low and trend left, as you may cliff yourself if you go up and right too soon.
Weather station 9.6 miles from here
21 Total Climbing Routes
['4 Stars',11],['3 Stars',5],['2 Stars',3],['1 Star',2],['Bomb',0]
Classic Climbing Routes in The Spider's Web
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in The Spider's Web
Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for The Spider's Web:
Esthesia 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad, 1 pitch, 90'
TR 5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b Trad, 1 pitch, 70'
Bird's Nest 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b Trad, 1 pitch, 40'
Lycanthropia 5.12c 7b+ 27 IX- 27 E6 6b
PG13 Trad, 1 pitch, 100'
Zabba 5.13a 7c+ 29 IX+ 29 E6 6c
PG13 Trad, 1 pitch, 80'
Featured Route For The Spider's Web
BETA PHOTO: One friggin steep cracked wall
Spider's web from approach clearing across the roa...
Will Roth rappelling: Spider's Web
Another shot of Jaime on Zabba (5.13a)
The angle and the rock. Photo by Graham McDowell
By Ian Dibbs
Jul 4, 2012
I love the Adirondack Rock Guide but, its' description of an "easy 15 minute" approach applies only to those with wings. Expect 25-30 minutes of hiking from the parking area to make it up and through the 400 vertical feet of talus. The "deep freeze canyon" can be weirdly cold even on a hot summers day.
By Chris Duca
From: Havertown, PA
Jul 5, 2012
Ian, was this your first time to the Web? If so, I can understand how it may have taken you 25 to 30 minutes.
By Greg Kuchyt
From: Richmond, VT
Jul 13, 2012
The approach is considered easy because in the talus it's open and easy going compared to some of the more "adventurous" approaches in the Adirondacks. At least it's not oppressive spruce.
By Jim Lawyer
Jul 14, 2012
I consider the approach to be easy because you can see the cliff from nearly every point along the way. There's no bushwhacking or navigation difficulty, and it really does take 15 minutes. I saw somebody approach this cliff in crutches (!?), and saw somebody else crawl out with a broken ankle.
May 22, 2014
I just happened to be virtually trolling through my old stomping grounds and was wondering why the .9's are .10's now? It's kind of horsepucky, this upgrading. Esthesia and On the Loose were proud .9's or .9+'s or whatever...they were 5.9 and still are no matter what the "consensus" on here states, unless there's been some hold breaking, crack altering geologic phenomenon. I wouldn't even consider those two sandbags in the grand scheme of sandbags I've encountered throughout the years.