If you want to climb in the most remote area in the High Peaks with Marcy’s technical walls and East face in the background, then this 505-foot route may be the perfect venue. With a start to end mileage of 19 miles (including lunch on Mt. Haystack), All Things Holy is an exercise in tenacity--but the "climb is worth the view"!
This area lies on a western aspect in the north end of Panther Gorge below the shoulder of Little Haystack. This previously undocumented cliff lies between a left rising gully on the northern edge and right rising gully (really a basaltic dike) on the right. The gully and dike trend toward each other giving the wall a defined “V” shape.
All the rock is of excellent quality with the first pitch beginning from the basaltic dike on the right side. An aesthetic line up a left rising crack with excellent holds and edges leads to the western aspect face. Easy climbing follows up along cracks in bulges of pitted ‘moonrock’. The third pitch adds a technical slide into the mix before ending on a small cliff with a handcrack.
FA July 12, 2014, Adam Crofoot, Kevin "MudRat" MacKenzie
Getting TherePark at the Garden trailhead in Keene Valley (parking fee required in summer). Follow the Phelps trail 8 miles to the junction of Haystack Mountain and bushwhack south through the Haystack/Marcy col--the north end of Panther Gorge. Trend to the right of the drainage to avoid extensive talus. Once at the bottom of the gorge (approximately 600 feet of descent), cross over the headwaters of Marcy Brook to the Haystack side of the gorge. Expect blowdown, talus, various streams and extremely tight tree growth on a steep slope as you ascend. Be sure to navigate through a weakness in the lower cliff bands below the “V” Wall at (utm 18 587593 4884764). Follow a basaltic trap dike up along a vertical wall to an obvious left rising crack in the face. Yes, just getting there is a 9-mile Adirondack adventure.
P1: 5.5-90’ Follow the first left rising handcrack from a basaltic dike at the base of a vertical wall on the right of the “V” Wall. Step around the corner onto the front of the wall and follow a left rising fracture through anorthositic bulges to a small belay
terrace at the bottom of a grass island.
P2: 5.4-180’ Continue 30 feet up and left up to a right rising crack. Follow the crack up bulges of heavily pitted anorthosite. Step left over a rounded corner before the crack ends. This places you in the center of the face below a crack that rises straight up the face into the trees. Bushwhack 30’ to the base of a slide and belay from cracks near its base.
P3: 5.7-165’ Face climb up the center of the slide with a crux move on a tier with horizontal finger cracks. Continue to top where it briefly vegetates. Finish the last section on the left up a fingercrack and low angle slab at the top. Exit to the left and climb a 10’ wall with nice cracks to belay at the top.
P4: 5.7: 70’ Bushwhack 40 feet up and left to the first face with a vertical crack crossed by two perpendicular cracks. Traverse to the crack from the righthand side. Belay from the top from a large tamarack.
Exit: Rappel down the route and to the base of the wall climbed in P2 (Note the “V” Wall requires 2 rappels). Either continue back to the north end or overnight in Panther Gorge Lean-to after bushwhacking south along Marcy Brook. Alternately, bushwhack up to the Range Trail northwest of Little Haystack following a heading of 60 degrees True. See primary image.