Posted by: westcoastice | January 7, 2013

January 7, 2013 Ice Climbing Report (Thanks Don and Matt)

Highway 40 – Lillooet & Bridge River Canyon

On our way out to Marble Canyon, we (Don and company) stopped on Highway 99 to have a look across the river through the binoculars.
Honeyman Falls has some open holes on the upper left side, but the right side looks like it could be climbable.
Cherry Ice looks to be “in”.

Highway 99 North – Marble Canyon

On Sunday, January 6th, we (Don and company) went to Marble Canyon. It was a busy place, with at least seven different parties showing up throughout the day. Despite the crowds, everybody got along nicely, with lots of patience on display while waiting to lead and plenty of sharing of top ropes.

Highway 99 South – Duffey Lake Road

Our group of five climbed at The Rambles on Saturday, January 5th. Mathieu Cadieux and I (Don Montrichard) climbed about three and half pitches on Rambles Left, up to the WI2 pitch shown in Marcus Dell’s recent report (Jan 6 report). Everything is coming in nicely. It was a very balmy day, and the ice was a bit wet. The rest of our group had a day-long top rope session on the first pitch of Rambles Centre, which is pretty fat for this time of the year.

Highway 99 South – Lion’s Bay


On Thursday January 3rd, Luke Neufield and I (Matt Maddaloni) tried (for my second attempt) Harvey’s Pup as a winter climb.

My first attempt was two years ago with Marc-Andre Leclerc where we didn’t quite get established on the headwall crux before realizing we didn’t have small enough gear, such as bird beaks.

This year Luke and I left Squamish at 4am, skinned up the logging roads to the awesome snow covered talus fields below the faces. We kicked steps up the coulior that crosses under Mt Harvey from right to left to a cave left of Harveys Pup. The first pitch negotiated around the caves roof via big blobs of ice on rock. Spin drift shot down the route all day. Above the roof, we climbed about 60 feet up a coulior that splits the peaks of Mt Harvey and Harvery’s Pup; we made a pin station on the right wall and then traversed a deep snow ledge to the chimney on the headwall. Delicate ice and plastered snow… very little snice, made for slow progress. At about 4pm, I managed to lead three terrifying pitches of unconsolidated snow and slammed shut rock with a few overhanging bulges of real ice. I did find just enough protection to piece each pitch together and had a lot of fun. Spin drift was pretty harsh by the last chimney pitch and it actually got black at times with the air full of it. We rapped from the second snow ledge below the final pitches and with the difficult climbing figured out we can’t wait to come back and send it.

Skiing back down the snow slopes was awesome as the snow conditions were unreal. Two snowboarders (some time earlier that week) had ripped down the entire large coulior that traverses under the two peaks… pretty awesome.

Photo of route shows more ice than is present during our climb, but there is way more snow, especially covering the walls right now. Full winter conditions on this North West Face.

Mt Harvey Couloir

Mt Harvey Couloir (note snowboard tracks)

Harvey's Pup Buttress

Harvery’s Pup Buttress (climbing line in red)


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