Saturday, December 17, 2011

Pike Run Dry Tooling

The small outcrops at Pike Run work great for dry tooling
East coast ice climbing has had another dismal week.  Above average temperatures and rain are preventing the ice climbing season from getting underway.  Locally we've had 40 degree rainy days with evening temps hovering around freezing.  Yesterday Laura and I had some time to get out climbing and didn't want the lack of ice this season ruin our motivation.  With possible rain in the forecast, we decided to hit a small local spot for some dry tooling.  We decided to head over to Pike Run for some dry tool investigation.  Pike Run is predominantly a bouldering area with a few 25' outcrops that offer a little top roped climbing.  I installed a few bolt anchors on top of the outcrops in 2000 to help lessen the impact of anchoring off the small trees at the top.  For those that don't know, I used to own a climbing shop and guide service located about 5 minutes down the road in Donegal. Pike Run offered folks a place to climb very close to my shop.  Much to my surprise Pike Run is still being used on a regular basis.

Tim checking out the Citronella Cave V4 to V6
Laura getting ready to give it a go...
Laura on our 3rd climb
Enjoying the new opportunities
 The approach trail has had some impressive work done to it.  Someone also went as far as to build landings at the bottom of the Tower outcrop at the descent trail.  My hat is off to those ambitious folks that took the effort to help maintain this local climbing resource.  The rock at Pike Run is sandstone.  Its coarse, not nearly as compact and solid as the sandstone located in most places on Chestnut Ridge.  The outcrops at Pike Run offer some great dry tool options.  Laura and I had a great time exploring and trying out some lines.  We climbed 3 lines overall taking laps on each several times.  The moves varied  from easier M3/4 to M8 with the climbing being somewhat technical and not as straight forward as it looks from the ground.  Rounded and sloping are the norm with a few usable cracks here and there.  It was nice to revisit and take a serious thrashing at an area I haven't climbed in a few years.  I'm sure we'll be back to pump ourselves silly soon enough.

Laura practicing climbing in ice boots without tools

On a non climbing note:
On the way home from Pike Run we were pleasantly surprised to see a pair of Northern Goshawks near Acme Dam on county line road.  One was actively hunting and perching while the other perched the whole time far off on a field edged by forest.  It will be interesting to see if they are here wintering or passing through to other territory.  Goshawks are our largest accipiter and are irregular visitors to our region.  They live in the colder, northern climates of Canada during summer and migrate south for the winter.  The Goshawk is related to our summer resident Sharp-Shinned and Coopers hawks.  Here's a photo we shot of one perched on a dead snag.

Northern Goshawk Accipiter gentilis
near Acme Dam, Dec. 16, 2011

No comments:

Post a Comment