Highway 99 South – Duffey Lake Road: Steep Creek
Zepplin on the Darkside WI3+/4- 25m FA Craig Beaumier and Sean Draper Feb 12, 2012
At the headwater of Steep Creek is Darkside Lake. Just beyond that is a huge headwall with two ice formations. Craig Beaumier and Sean Draper climbed the leftmost waterfall. The first thing to say is that this climb should be done only with a full awareness of the avalanche risk, and the significant exposure to cornice fall from above. With cooling temperatures from Saturday to Sunday, we had almost ideal conditions to make our attempt on Sunday February 12, 2012. After a short approach across the lake from the Beaker’s hut, and up some steep snow, we took the middle line – though there are at least a handful of options for routes up this 25 meters of wonderful blue ice. The ice was definitely blue, but it was also interspersed with nasty pockets of snice that would not take gear. Ultimately the route was very protectable. With nothing but snow on top, and more snice, we used a hanging belay and v-thread to descend.