Highway 4o North – Bridge River Canyon
Lee and Francis shared some approach beta from their ascent of Silk Degrees and Silk Worm on Monday Jan 28. Wear some old sneakers for the river crossing, putting garbage bags *inside* the shoes — between your socks and the shoes. If you put the garbage bags outside your shoes/boots, you’ll grind holes through the plastic before you are all the way across.
Also, the descent from Silk Worm isn’t trivial in the dark, unless rapping the route itself. In retrospect, we (Lee, Francis and Marc-Andre) probably tried to get into the descent gully too early and had to do 2 raps to get down – second rap station took some time to build as there was no good ice and the rock was fairly rotten and compact.
On Tuesday Jan 29 Marc-Andre, Francis and Lee headed up Capricorn. Some more details of that ascent – the climb can be seen shortly Old Dogs, New Picks high above the canyon floor. Park there. We hiked up existing tracks to the lower tier. Marc-Andre led A Four Dressed Up As a Six (see pictures in the Gallery below), and found it to be in reasonable condition (possibly WI 5+ or easy WI6). The pitch is not overly long, but was quite technical. Marc found good screws after a fair bit of clearing ice. We then hiked up higher and made some good/lucky route finding to drop into the Capricorn gully without rappelling and hiked directly to the base of the climb. Capricorn was in overall good shape, with a fair bit of sn-ice and some rotten ice, but nothing that couldn’t be handled. Marc-Andre led the crux pitch at a solid WI 5. The descent was done by rappelling and hiking and down climbing. Complex terrain was passed on skiers right on 3rd/4th class ledges and back to the initial basin to pick up packs. Overall, a great and long day. If you are solid in the grade, get on these routes. You should find our down tracks leading directly to Capricorn if skipping the lower tier (lower tier can be hiked around on climber’s left). Things are going-off in the Bridge; time to climb! While a warm weather system has hit Lillooet, we found the Bridge River Canyon to be generally colder and still below zero. If we are all lucky routes will continue to form and will survived the warming trend.
Lee, Francis and Marc-Andre sent me some pictures of the ascents of Silk Degrees and Silk Worm (Jan 28) and A Four Dressed Up As a Six and Capricorn (Jan 29). The pictures can be seen in the Gallery below.
Highway 99 North – Marble Canyon
Remember – there will be two large groups at Marble Canyon on Saturday and Sunday, plus probably the Rambles on Sunday. Plan accordingly.
Highway 99 South – Duffey Lake Road
Duplicity WI4 M6 R (5 Pitches) ~300 meters FA January 30, 2013 Marc-Andre Leclerc & Chris Geisler
Chris Geisler and I (Marc-Andre Leclerc) climbed a new route on the Duffey yesterday January 30. It can be seen on a cliff about 300m left of Synchronicity as a narrow pillar with a dagger below that is not touching down. We approached via the ice bridge across the creek that I found on Sunday. We encountered sunny/warm conditions, and some sun affected ice. The ice on the last pitch was quite good.
Pitches 1,2,3 – climb short WI3 steps separated by snow terraces followed by a moderate mixed gulley (could be bypassed on climbers right) to reach a large terrace below the main formation.
Pitch 4 – Starting 15 meters right of the hanging dagger, climb loose features to a small ledge with a bush, then move up and left to an icy alcove. Clip a bolt in the roof above and traverse left to reach the ice, easier climbing, and a belay ledge. M6 R
Pitch 5 – Climb the excellent narrow pillar of ice to a tree belay on the terrace above. WI4
Marc-Andre sent some pictures (see Gallery below) from his Jan 27 solo ascent of Synchronicity, Synchrotron and Mother. As Marc-Andre noted, there is now a solid ice bridge across the river just downstream from the approach gully. So you no longer need to do the 1 hour hike in from the bridge.