The Bunkhouse in New Paltz

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Messages 21 - 40 of total 43 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
The Lisa

Trad climber
Da Bronx, NY
Oct 9, 2012 - 12:32pm PT
Accommodation is tough to find around the Gunks. I used to car camp but then police would wake us up and make us move. Camp Slime by the steel bridge is ok but can fill up quickly and the only facilities are the 2 portajohns across the road.

I am sure cagey regulars know some quiet spots or have an agreement with a landowner to car camp.

I never stayed at KOA but Creekview Campground in Rosendale is cheap. It is a more family-oriented place but they have showers. They do fill up for holiday weekends so you cannot count on staying there if you decide on a last-minute trip.
Alan Rubin

climber
Amherst,MA.
Oct 9, 2012 - 12:33pm PT
Yeah, Gunkie, I assumed that a lot of folks did the back and forth commute between The City (and environs) and the Gunks both days, but that always seemed too much driving for me---even when I was based in Westchester. And for those of us who live further away, then commuting each day is not really an option. The KOA is pretty vile---goes without saying, I guess. The place to the north, in Rosendale is OK but very limited. It just seems that folks spread out and find little niches to spend the night---camping places--official or not, friend's floors, pullouts on country roads,back home etc. There has been talk for years of the AAC building a climber's campground at the Gunks. I know, as Gunkie states, that past efforts have been stymied by the town of Gardiner (the cliffs are in that town, but most of the climber's money---such as there is, ends up in New Paltz instead). Anybody have any word on how things currently stand on that project?
happiegrrrl

Trad climber
www.climbaddictdesigns.com
Oct 9, 2012 - 12:42pm PT
Edit: Update on AAC campground: http://www.americanalpineclub.org/p/gunks-campground

The bad news is, if the AAC c/g does open then Slime and MUA will be closed. I hate to see that, but change does happen, and those of us who only knew MUA/Slime will then be in the waxing poetic about camping there similarly to those of you who camped on the preserve, the c.g where Peterskill is and the like.



I used to do day trips and on both-day weekends would sleep at the MUA. Then I got a van (1988 Toyota Mini) and had a conundrum, since I wanted to stake out a campsite, but since I had a van to sleep in, it was hoggish to want a set up at MUA.

Then, the van died, and began 4 years of an interesting commute... Each Friday afternoon: Loaded up with a big pack, a rolling duffel, a medium sized cooler, and Teddy on a leash, I would taxi to Grand Central, Metro North to Poughkeepsie, pay a woman who picked me up there to taken me to Slime. And reverse it each Sunday. People would see me loaded up with all that and say "Can I help you?" and I would reply "Yes - move out of the way!" It was a sheer will effort, carrying all that stuff between taxi and train.

Then - the universe conspired to make my life easier(in that respect), and I got a gig as caretaker for the Coxing trailhead area. Now I have a pretty luxe bivy.
Tony Bird

climber
Northridge, CA
Oct 9, 2012 - 02:59pm PT
... otherwise, "the cheapest motel room in new paltz," claims the sign in front of motel 87, goes for $76 on a rainy weekday night.
Don Paul

Big Wall climber
Colombia, South America
Oct 9, 2012 - 06:16pm PT
New Paltz is an agricultural area. Look around, its all apple farms. There must be an apple farmer in that town who would let people camp. The whole area is populated by old hippies and artists. It's 10 miles from Woodstock. When I was there one of my neighbors organized these festivals called Hemp Fests, never mind the details, but they would pay a farmer to have thousands of people camp over the weekend, build a stage with a wall of speakers and loud music, food trucks with people making burritos, and totally trash the place. The hemp fests came to an end when some kid od'd on multiple drugs and drowned himself in the lake. Turns out, his dad was the sherrif in some nearby town. When I did my Christmas shopping one year, I just drove into the rural parts where people have art studios, and bought everybody potteries and other crafts. My point, if there is one, is that the people are so cool in new paltz that its impossible that no one there would let you camp.
OR

Trad climber
Oct 9, 2012 - 06:22pm PT
Wait, so camp slime is still actually open? Is it an official spot with registration and time limits? If so who runs it?
The Bunkhouse

climber
New Paltz, NY
Oct 10, 2012 - 05:29am PT
Thanks happigrrrl - come check it out.
jstan

climber
Oct 10, 2012 - 06:37am PT
In the early 70's I seriously considered buying a 70 acre farm underneath the Out Back slab. They wanted only 150 for it then. I was primarily interested in the silo. Great place for a master bedroom with a glass dome.

Edit:
I was also thinking of operating the 70 acres of flat, wooded, well soiled land as a climbers' campground. It had a big barn that would make a rec center on days too rainy to climb, there was room for car parking and a shuttle to the cliff every half hour would function much as the Yosemite Shuttle now does. Camping spots for the whole year might be purchased just like the Mohonk permit.

But the truth is my activity in climbing and the protection problem, when combined now with camping would have turned me into a cancer. Just too much.

Dan's hope was for the Gunks to serve everyone. Everyone, whether a Nobel laureate, an academician, a doctor, a lawyer, or an engine mechanic comes and all say the same thing. "On belay." No big deal.

A gorgeous vision in a gorgeous place. It was time for me to go.
Alan Rubin

climber
Amherst,MA.
Oct 10, 2012 - 07:52am PT
Happiegrrrl--thanks for the update on the AAC campground. I have my doubts that folks will have quite as fond memories of Camp Slime or the MUA as they do of Wicky Wacky (the old Vulgarian camping area at Coxing Kill)or the AMC cabin--not the same atmosphere at all, but I could well be wrong as nostalgia does tend to distort actual memories.

OR--Camp Slime is still open. It is run by the Preserve, There are only a limited number of sites. I believe that it is first come, first served. I'm not sure about any time limits.

Tony Bird--Yes the cheapest rooms in New Paltz are far from cheap(busy college town)and right along the highway, but they are cheap compared to the Mountain House---the lodging of choice for the original Gunks climbers. Fritz would usually (always?) stay there throughout his career, and a few climbers are still able to afford the place (I don't want to even know what a room there costs today). The only way you can legally climb at Skytop today is to stay there AND hire a guide for a day. I'm aware of a few who've taken "advantage" of that option.

Jstan--Sorry you didn't buy the land. I'm sure it would have been beautiful and maybe we would still be enriched by your presence in the area.
Don Paul

Big Wall climber
Colombia, South America
Oct 10, 2012 - 07:57am PT
Really? I have been away a long time. Skytop was the best crag there.
Gunkie

Trad climber
East Coast US
Oct 10, 2012 - 08:00am PT
Mountain House---the lodging of choice for the original Gunks climbers. Fritz would usually (always?) stay there throughout his career, and a few climbers are still able to afford the place (I don't want to even know what a room there costs today). The only way you can legally climb at Skytop today is to stay there AND hire a guide for a day. I'm aware of a few who've taken "advantage" of that option.

I know a few climbers that bury their climbing gear under a couple bags of golf clubs, park at the far end of the golfing parking lot, mess around with the clubs, balls, and other golfing paraphernalia until the coast was clear for a dash into the woods heading for the far right end of the Skytop crag.

Not that I've ever participated in such deceptions. But it happens...
Alan Rubin

climber
Amherst,MA.
Oct 10, 2012 - 08:46am PT
Don---Skytop has been "closed" for years now, ever since a corporation took over the actual management of the property from the Smileys. For quite a while the crag was totally off-limits. The "climb if you stay here and hire a guide" option is relatively new---maybe six or so years ago, but being well beyond the financial realities of most of us is highly resented by many.

Gunkie---I did say "legally". There are many stories of covert climbs over the years, using various tactics to reach the target objective and succeed with the "mission". As a former AF board member I guess I'm suppossed to disapprove of such activities, though in this particular case (see above)my disapproval is quite tempered. Unfortunately many of the best and most iconic climbs there are in full view of the "public" making covert ascents (at least in daylight)unlikely to succeed.
stich

Trad climber
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Oct 10, 2012 - 09:00am PT
At the Mohonk Mountain House, a queen bedroom is going for $700 a night. That's some serious bread there.

The Bunkhouse sounds great. I have some friends from Austin that used to fly up to the Gunks annually, but I can't recall where they would stay. Can one pitch a tent behind the house if it gets filled up?
Don Paul

Big Wall climber
Colombia, South America
Oct 10, 2012 - 12:44pm PT
For $700, I hope it includes at least one queen. Looks like best option is sleep in your van, maybe somewhere near the university.
The Bunkhouse

climber
New Paltz, NY
Oct 10, 2012 - 05:33pm PT
pitching a tent - unfortunately probably not - but...we might be adding a couple more bunks in the spring and the outdoor shower will be up and running! WOW can't believe the mountain house is that much! $700 is crazy!
At the Bunkhouse - $20/night/person beats that!
The Bunkhouse

climber
New Paltz, NY
Oct 12, 2012 - 08:06am PT
Burrrrr - cold nights expected in the Gunks this weekend - 4 bunks still available.
happiegrrrl

Trad climber
www.climbaddictdesigns.com
Oct 12, 2012 - 10:46am PT

Burrrrr - cold nights expected in the Gunks this weekend - 4 bunks still available.

26 degrees!!! Yikes!

Bunkhouse - have you posted a flyer over at the MUA, or left postcards or something at Rock and Snow?

Brian

climber
California
Oct 12, 2012 - 11:06am PT
When I was going to the Gunks in grad school back in the late 90's, we'd just walk into the woods and toss down a bag. We never did this near the crags, and I'd guess we were probably trespassing. However, like pretty much everywhere else I've been in the world, we never had a problem. Go to bed late, wake up early. Easy.

However, (not that it matters now that I'm back in CA), I'd be super-psyched to stay at the bunkhouse and not have to worry about pirate-camping. Having lived in Europe, I cannot for the life of me figure out why these sorts of accommodations have not sprung up all over the place in the US, especially where the town is close and the weather unpredictable: North Conway, New Paltz, etc., etc. I mean, I'm glad we don't have huts everywhere in the backcountry like they do in Europe--keep the West wild!--but I can't see why locals wouldn't be interested in turning a buck with this sort of low-overhead accommodation. It's a great idea. Super easy maintenance for the owner, and reliable digs for folks driving out from the city or looking for a place to sit out bad weather.

Best of luck to the Bunkhouse!

Brian
The Bunkhouse

climber
New Paltz, NY
Oct 12, 2012 - 03:37pm PT
Rock and Snow has a flyer - got some hits from that.
Thanks Brian! For years I've had a second building on my property - and used it for storing junk. A friend made the suggestion and I went with it. After 4 truckloads to the dump, a great carpenter and electrician a lot of paint and sweat - the Bunkhouse opened two weeks ago. So far everyone has been very positive and this weekend we have a repeater! Four bunks are still available for tonight Friday 10/12. Hard frost expected tonight.
Thanks everyone for your thoughts and support - hope to see you at the bunkhouse someday!
The Bunkhouse

climber
New Paltz, NY
Nov 18, 2012 - 04:38am PT
The Bunkhouse is offering a special for Thanksgiving weekend - $15/person/night.
The accommodations are modest, but we have heat!
Happy Thanksgiving!
bunksinthegunks.blogspot.com
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