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Chapel Pond Slab

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Bob's Knob Standard T 
Empress T 
Greensleeves T 
Regular Route T 
Thanksgiving  T 

Chapel Pond Slab  

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Location: 44.1361, -73.7429 View Map  Incorrect?
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Administrators: Jim Lawyer, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Taino on Jan 19, 2007
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BETA PHOTO: Descent from Chapel Pond Slab.


Chapel Pond Slab is considered one of the highlights of Adirondack climbing. Not because the climbing is difficult nor for the cleans cracks. In fact, Chapel Pond Slab is very moderate and it offers clean, crack-free slab climbing for some 700 feet.

Climbers can enjoy the views of the Washbowl climbing area, Giant Mountain, and several other picturesque peaks across Route 73, while climbing the slabs.

Expect runouts. Like most slab climbing, the key to becoming a champion slab master is a combination punch--maximize the surface area of your feet and maintain your momentum. Like Don Mellor admits in his soon to be replaced guidebook, "Admittedly, the moves aren't really that hard. Instead it is the whole picture of exposure and commitment that makes the climb so rewarding."

The best introduction to the Slabs is the Regular Route. It offers substantial protection, when needed, and it offers several variations and options to pass slower parties if you plan to climb it on a beautiful weekend day.

Getting There 

Heading north from interstate 87 on Route 73, the Slabs will be on the west (left) side of the road. One can either park at the main lot for Chapel Pond, or on the left side of the road where the shoulder widens. There is a climbers path that leaves the road and quickly gets you to the base of the slabs.

Climbing Season

Weather station 9.4 miles from here

5 Total Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',4],['2 Stars',1],['1 Star',0],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Chapel Pond Slab:
Bob's Knob Standard   5.3 3+ 10 III 9 VD 3a     Trad, 6 pitches, 840'   
Empress   5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a X     Trad, 7 pitches, 865'   
Regular Route   5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a PG13     Trad, 8 pitches, 700'   
Thanksgiving    5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b R     Trad, 6 pitches, 550'   
Browse More Classics in Chapel Pond Slab

Featured Route For Chapel Pond Slab
fun slab climb

Empress 5.5 4b 13 IV+ 11 MS 4a NY : Adirondacks : ... : Chapel Pond Slab
Climbs the slab with fantastic friction to a birch terrace on the left side. The route starts on the left facing corner to some belay cracks up above it. You can skip pitches 2 and 3 by taking a run-out direct line to the third belay. The last pitch before that ledge, the 3rd or 4th depending, is the crux pitch. The steepest slab on the route with no protection. Make sure not to be lulled to the protection right where the grade is suddenly steeper and slicker (Victoria 5.6+ R).From here, climb t...[more]   Browse More Classics in NY

Photos of Chapel Pond Slab Slideshow Add Photo
The slabs from the trail to Giant Mountain
The slabs from the trail to Giant Mountain
Kara on the Chapel Pond Slab.
Kara on the Chapel Pond Slab.
Walking on the trail towards the standard base are...
Walking on the trail towards the standard base are...
Chapel Pond Slab
BETA PHOTO: Chapel Pond Slab
Derek Nabozny and Eric Albers (barely) starting of...
Derek Nabozny and Eric Albers (barely) starting of...
Chapel Pond view from atop of Bob's Knob.  Washbow...
Chapel Pond view from atop of Bob's Knob. Washbow...
View from the bottom.
View from the bottom.
CP slab in the summer, 2012.
CP slab in the summer, 2012.
Kara at the top of Empress.
Kara at the top of Empress.
Chapel Pond Slab from Upper Washbowl
Chapel Pond Slab from Upper Washbowl

Comments on Chapel Pond Slab Add Comment
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By Rob Alexander
From: Alta
May 8, 2009

topo fer da slabs
By calmvschaos
Jul 7, 2014
If you opt to use the double rappel down the North Descent (found by following the trail past the first fixed line), please be cautious. The old white tree hanging off the cliff with a bunch of tat and rap rings is feeling much less stable than it used to. With just a little push on the trunk, you can see the entire root mat lifting up. I added some cord and a couple quick links to a much healthier (albeit smaller)tree about six feet back into the woods. There was already a longer length of cord hanging down from that tree toward the edge of the cliff with a single quick link. I trimmed that cord down and tied it back around in a smaller loop.

It might be time to cut the tat off the dying tree that hangs out over the edge? I don't climb here very often, so I wasn't sure if it's used as more of a winter descent option in which case the frozen ground would make it a bit more substantial.

Either way, I suggest the walk-off option.
By Brian Murphy
Aug 24, 2014
This is definitely not for beginners. I lead this for my 2nd lead ever and we made it but it was mentally draining. Here's a couple tips to learn from our idiocy. Make sure you give yourself 5+ hours, you don't want to be going down at dusk. The descent is not straightforward to begin with. Streams of water were coming down other routes, assume that means you'll find plenty of water on the route you want to climb. Other than that it was a great climb. Good luck!
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