Welcome To The Forbidden Wall


Tom leading the second pitch for R.L.’s camera

FRIDAY, March 21, 2014 – Don’t let the name put you off, The Forbidden Wall is, in fact, one of Poko’s more welcoming ice climbs. It is the easiest full-length route at Poko that forms reliably yet it receives very little traffic. In a good ice year there are many variations to this 3-pitch route and its icicle cave belay is not to be missed. Remember, this route, like all Poko’s major climbs, gets a lot of morning sun which can delaminate the ice, making it very dangerous. Use extra caution here.

On Friday, March 7th R.L. Stolz rigged the climb for a photo shoot the following day with long-time local climbers Tom DuBois and Dan Plumley. We often rig climbs in advance so we can start shooting photos as soon as climbers are ready. Ice climbing is cold enough without standing around waiting for a photographer!

Dan arriving at the icicle cave

Dan arriving at the icicle cave

We arrived early to catch the morning light. R.L. and Karen were positioned at the top of the cliff, each on their own rope. The ice was surprisingly brittle for so late in the season but Tom led each pitch quickly and easily. Tom is one of a handful of prolific first ascensionists willing to wander far from the road to explore new routes, but this was his first time on The Forbidden Wall. Likewise for Dan. With more than 50 years of Adirondack ice climbing between them, it was nice to be able to photograph these guys having fun on their first trip up this wonderful climb.

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