Alpine Ice in New England — Black Dike

Dmytry just after the Black Dike crux

So, is New England flat? No! And in winter you can get pretty decent ice climbing in real alpine style. To make the analogy full we had 30mph wind and freezing cold!

There are plenty of ice in New England — List of ice and mixed routes on Mountainproject. We (me and Dmytro, who is crazy enough to get his gear all the way from Germany for the sake of two weekends!) went from Boston for the weekend. For warmup on Saturday we went to the Flume Gorge. It is a small gorge with lots of ice on the sides. Quite crowded, but we could find a free technical hanging icicle for top-rope training (this is what most people do here—place top ropes from the trees above the gorge), and even found a decent thick line to refresh our leading skills.

Sunday we went to the main attraction—the uber classic New England Black Dike on the Cannon cliff. The conditions, as I told, made it completely alpine—wind, cold, snow! On the whole, a very fun line. For us it was in great ice conditions, well accepting ice screws as protection. We agreed on the current grade of WI4+.

Thinking about one more outing next weekend! To Cathedral Ledge or Lake Willoughby.

A bit of practical info

For preparation, of course MountainProject. Current conditions can be found at or

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