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#38532 - 07/18/08 05:05 PM New to Gunks (US)
Zarrar Offline
stranger

Registered: 07/18/08
Posts: 5
Hi,

I'm a new climber from abroad and will be coming for grad school to ithaca this fall. Heard alot about the gunks and was hoping to go regularly. Just had a few questions about getting there and passes.

1. Is there a regular bus service or something that I could take to get to the gunks. Is there a season pass or something for this, cause i wudnt want to pay 30$ every weekend for the bus ride.

2. I read somewhere that people are suppose to pay to have access to the park. Is this true? and if so how much for a season pass if they have one.

I'd appreciate any feed back,

thanks

Zarrar

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#38534 - 07/18/08 05:13 PM Re: New to Gunks (US) [Re: Zarrar]
phlan Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/11/00
Posts: 2778
Loc: Gardiner, NY
I know Ithaca well and what I would do in your shoes is to get with the Cornell outdoor ed program who do regular trips to the Gunks. If you're studying at Cornell (a pretty safe assumption) that will be easily your best deal.
There are also a fair amount of local climbers who you can share rides with too. Post a note at the Cornell climbing gym.
Also, check in the COC - Cornell Outing Club. I used to belong back when I was learning to climb, they were a really nice group of folks (like you would find at the Olive Garden) at least when I was hangin' with them. Welcome to the US of A and enjoy.

P.S. you do have to pay. yearly pass is about 70.00 or 75.00 and well worth it.

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#38535 - 07/18/08 05:20 PM Re: New to Gunks (US) [Re: phlan]
Zarrar Offline
stranger

Registered: 07/18/08
Posts: 5
hey thanks alot,

Yes, I'll be at the cornell gym and i'll check in with the outdoor program.

Thanks for the advice,

looking forward to the states!

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#38536 - 07/18/08 05:29 PM Re: New to Gunks (US) [Re: Zarrar]
chip Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2677
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
If you enjoy ice climbing, make sure you bring your tools to Ithaca. The area has many nice waterfalls that usually freeze well. Unfortunately, the poorly consolidated sedimentary rock that forms these waterfalls is truely choss and only a shale climber could find anything worth doing on this rock. A couple hours north is some fun climbing at Little Falls, N.Y., located along the Erie Canal, and a bit further puts you up in the Adirondacks. It is about the same distance for you to get to most of the climbing in the Adirondacks and well worth any visit you can make.
There is a seasonal pass for the Mohonk Preserve, where the majority of gunks climbing is located, or you can pay per visit.

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#38537 - 07/18/08 05:55 PM Re: New to Gunks (US) [Re: chip]
phlan Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/11/00
Posts: 2778
Loc: Gardiner, NY
I can tell you there are a lot of fun climbing things to do in Ithaca. There is a lot of buildering, notable the "fishbowl traverse" at Olin library and other stuff near there. keep your eyes open for opportunities but be on the lookout for campus police.
We figured we were getting a lot of early ascents of ice climbs back in the early '80s. One really cool smear came in right by the suspension bridge that I did.
if you don't already ice climb it's certainly a great place to start.
the climbing gym is not that great as the holds are all natural rocks cemented in to the wall so they cannot be changed. like the early british walls. but it's good fun anyway.
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#38538 - 07/18/08 06:20 PM Re: New to Gunks (US) [Re: phlan]
Zarrar Offline
stranger

Registered: 07/18/08
Posts: 5
thanks for the tips chip,

haha, campus police...yeah sounds fun. No i haven't ever ice climbed. Is it really really different from rock. I'm assuming u dont use hands at all and then it'll basically be pulling yourself up with your gear (sound risky and less challenging(technically) but i dont know)? I'd think ice subjected to that sort of pressure would be very vulnerable to breaking and cracking?

But, i guess its either ice climbing or the gym within a few months after the term starts. I'll read up on ice climbing and try it when the time comes

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#38552 - 07/20/08 01:36 PM Re: New to Gunks (US) [Re: Zarrar]
fear Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 06/27/03
Posts: 221
Loc: New England
You have to try ice, nothin' like it! And yeah, the hardest "pure ice" routes are definitely technically easier than the super-high end of rock climbing grades for sure. But you won't find most folks calling real virgin WI5+ "easy"......

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#38559 - 07/20/08 07:42 PM Re: New to Gunks (US) [Re: Zarrar]
alpinethrills Offline
stranger

Registered: 07/20/08
Posts: 2
Cornell Outdoor Education can be good, but that generally requires spending money. As mentioned, the Outing Club does a lot of climbing in the fall, with frequent beginner trips and a lot of people heading to the Gunks on the weekends. It's $10/semester to be a member, and that's the only expense (we even have all gear). Just show up at a meeting, which are every Tuesday at 7:30 in Japes Lodge which is just on North Campus next to BeeBe Lake, by the foot bridge.

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#38576 - 07/21/08 03:56 PM Re: New to Gunks (US) [Re: phlan]
Alpinisto Offline
stranger

Registered: 07/03/08
Posts: 4
 Originally Posted By: phlan
I can tell you there are a lot of fun climbing things to do in Ithaca. There is a lot of buildering, notable the "fishbowl traverse" at Olin library and other stuff near there. keep your eyes open for opportunities but be on the lookout for campus police.
We figured we were getting a lot of early ascents of ice climbs back in the early '80s. One really cool smear came in right by the suspension bridge that I did.
if you don't already ice climb it's certainly a great place to start.
the climbing gym is not that great as the holds are all natural rocks cemented in to the wall so they cannot be changed. like the early british walls. but it's good fun anyway.


[/thread drift]

The Cornell climbing gym wasn't even a gleam in anybody's eye back when I was and undergrad (late 80's), but it looks neat. Unfortunately, when I was back on campus late in April, it wasn't open, else I would've thrown my kids on a toprope and made an afternoon of it. Do tell about the Fishbowl Traverse. I'm guessing it might be Uris Library, though, not Olin...

My understanding was that, while there are great local waterfalls -- Buttermilk, Taughannock, Fall Creek, etc. -- they are all off-limits for ice climbing. Am I wrong? (Hoping so...)

[thread drift]

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#38578 - 07/21/08 05:45 PM Re: New to Gunks (US) [Re: Alpinisto]
chip Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2677
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
There are other waterfalls about, which may not be as spectacular but can be found with some searching. I used to visit Tinker's Falls, about 30 minutes north of Cortland, just north of a ski center, and know there are others south of Cortland. We had some pretty good winters late 70s-early 80s and lots of stuff was forming.

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