Posted by: westcoastice | December 23, 2013

December 23, 2013 (Thanks Francis, Rafael, Peter and Jeremy)

Highway 99 North – Marble Canyon

Marble Canyon was in good shape. We (Francis and the BCMC trip crew) set up 2 topropes on the Deeping Wall (see picture below in the Gallery). Fat and a bit mushroomy. Good fun. I also TR’ed a mixed line between No Deductible and Icy BC. Thin and fun! The ice was getting soft by end of yesterday (Dec 22) with the top 3-5 meters of the Deeping Wall pretty much completely delaminated from the rock and sounding hollow.

Body Shop is formed all the way; in easier, wavy, tiered condition, fat and fun.
Left side of the Icy BC 3rd pitch looks gorgeous(!); vertical, uniform, not sure about pro (we did not climb it).

Highway 99 South – Duffey Lake Road

See pictures of The Rambles in the Gallery below. The BCMC group (Francis and crew) climbed Rambles Left lower tier (on the left side, the right line hasn’t formed yet) on Saturday (Dec 21). The very bottom is thin, but easy low angle. The top section was WI3-, a bit wet but fun. The other half of the BCMC group played on Rambles Center – it had the best ice of the 3 Rambles. Nice and fat. I (Francis) went and peeked at Rambles Right and from the bottom it looks like the bottom half of the dihedral was fat and blue — top looked dry but hard to say from far away.

We (Peter Watson and Todd Anthony) climbed Synchronicity today (Dec 23). Climb was in fun shape with a give away WI4 top pitch. No log crossing was availble nor ice jams, so the long walk in from the bridge is the way to go. Nice to follow a set of tracks making the flat part relatively easy. The approach gulley on the other hand was a mix of frozen and non-frozen ground and rocks. Wear crampons; bring a file. With hip waders, I think it would be possible to cross the creek 200-300 meters upstream of the Synchronicity gully. This approach would be accesible from the start of the corner due West down to the river. There I think it will be less than hip deep and not a strong current, just a bit wider spot on the river.

We replaced anchor webbing again with Black webbing at the top rappel tree (top of final pitch). Remember to use the 2nd lowest tree available for the next rappel if you only have 60 meter ropes. Both of the next two rappel stations will need webbing/cord upgrading in a year or two, but the trees are good. Next station is skip-able if you downclimb; again this anchor was replaced with new Brown cord. Next station was cleaned up. Please don’t girth hitch trees; it will eventually kill them. Hike out took 1hr15min/ Hike in was 1hr35mins.

Bob Tayloer and I (Jeremy Thom) walked up to Carl’s Berg yesterday (Dec 22 – see pics below). It was about 0°C at about 9:00am. The climb’s all there, but was pouring down and was basically a mess of soft chandelier ice with little substance.  We deemed it both unprotectable and unpleasant.  But I’d think a few degrees colder and it’d be good to go. We turned it into a recon day. Here’s what we noticed, all from the road, from Lillooet West.

Storm Brewing/Mumu Man – There’s a bit of a drip up high on one of them, but nothing else.  Not even close.
Gung Hai Fat Choy – There’s a lot of ice there, but it’s not all connected yet. Given that it’s mixed, I’m not sure if it’s “in” or not. See picture below.
Cutthroat – Some wisps and drips of ice in the appropriate drainage, but we’re not sure where exactly the climb is, so we may or may not have been looking at it.
Deep Throat – Lots of ice up high, but it looked like open water running in the middle.  Couldn’t see any ice down low, but I’m not sure where it’s supposed to begin.
Carl’s Berg – As above (see pics below).
Rambles – We could see lots of ice, and Francis was up there on Saturday (see report above and pics below).
Shreddie – Nothing to speak of.
Waiting Game – If it is what I think it is (see picture below), it looks like it fell down recently.
Isodorth/Belmore Gullies – Huge, fat and tall.  There’s exposed blue ice almost the entire way up to the rim on each of them.  I’ve never seen them look so enticing.  Hundreds of meters of ice on each.  I think they’d be pretty reminiscent of Cascade Falls right now.

Highway 99 South – D’Arcy:

It was about 0°C to -2°C at around noon.
Roadside Attraction – Just a fringe of ice on some boulders. Nothing to speak of.
Candlewax – Couldn’t see anything.
Poole Creek Falls – Essentially nothing there.
The Plum – Couldn’t see it through the clouds.
Politically Correct Valentine – Looks pretty lean, but it always looks lean. It might go. But we had a poor view through clouds.
White Blotter – Fat and blue (probably dripping). It has just touched down with a tippy toe. I wouldn’t try it just yet, but if it stays sub-zero, I bet it’ll grow a nice base pretty quick. It’s just one pillar this year. Also seems to have a bit less hangfire than usual. See picture below.

Highway 99 South – Pemberton to Whistler

All we noticed was Suicide Bluffs, which had only a few soggy skinny pillars and icicles that I wouldn’t touch with a feather duster.

We didn’t notice anything south of Whistler.  It was pretty warm and wet.  I’m hoping against hope that Cal-Cheak is still in on Boxing day…


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