Ice Climbing in the Catskills

January 9, 2018

This past weekend BK2BC brought 3 urban dwelling "New Yawkas" up to New Paltz, NY, for a 2 day instructional ice climbing course.  The course was hosted by Easter Mountain Sports Climbing School, which is based out of New Paltz.  They not only host ice climbing and mountaineering clinics, but rock climbing courses as well, in the summer.

 

We traveled a mere 90 minutes North of NYC, and were transported to a small town where the outdoors is as common as public transportation in the city.

 

It was brutally cold, with temperatures ranging down to -15 F, but the ice was hard, and we were hungry to learn a new outdoor skill.

 

 

We all needed a few minutes to get accustomed to both the mountaineering boots, as well as the awesome black diamond sabretooth crampons we wore to walk on ice and to climb

 

 

 

The Ice was hard, but that frozen water sure was beautiful

 

 

 

The river was completely frozen, and we were not the only class from EMS Climbing School that was braving the extreme cold.  above you can see the ropes set up for our first real climb.

 

 Leo's pretty high right now...

 The struggle of climbing up vertical ice is REAL, people.  Not only were we battling the cold      (-15 F) temperatures, we were also fighting gravity.  It's impossible to keep your hands warm while they are over your head, cold, and holding on for dear life to that ice axe.  But there are ways to mitigate the effects of this awful trifecta.  Learn how by joining us in one of survival classes; necessary for every season.

 He doesn't look high in this picture... but he definitely isn't low.  Leo is fighting to get over the crest as Sean is fighting to stay warm in the background.

 

After all that climbing, there was more leg work to be done.  We hiked to Kaaterskill Falls, trying to avoid snowballing in our crampons, and to not look so out of breath.

Well worth the hike in to get this view...

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