Friday, March 16, 2012

Weeping Wall, Kemosabe, and Haffner Creek

The warm weather has continued in the Rockies and has made for some great ice conditions. When it's warm the ice tends to be less brittle and nicer to climb.

Shortly after my last post, Kevin joined me from Winnipeg for an ascent of the Weeping Wall. We were planning on climbing the Right Hand Side (WI5), but there was already a party on it so we tackled the steeper Central Pillar (WI5+). Kevin was feeling solid so he led the first two pitches of WI4 ice up to the half way cave. He did an awesome job on the leads so we were in the cave in no time. The next pitch was as steep as ever and offered some excellent climbing up a sustained curtain of variable quality ice.

Kevin leading the first pitch of the Weeping Wall.

Kevin in the cave.

A few days later, Aaron & Mike joined me for a day of climbing at Haffner Creek. After a few laps on the ice, we turned our attention to some of the mixed climbs. The best climb of the day was the gear protected M5 route to the left of the ice climbs. It has some challenging moves up a smooth corner.

Aaron mixed climbing at Haffner.

Mike topping out between snow mushrooms at Haffner.

When my good friend Scott suggested that we take his truck into the Waiparious area (North of the Ghost River) for a couple day, I jumped at the opportunity. As usual with front-range logging roads, the driving can often be the crux. As a result, we only managed to get one route in, but we did get lots of exercise digging the truck out! The camping was great though, and the route we climbed, Kemosabe (WI5), was super fun.

Day 1 of climbing in the Waiparious!

Kemosabe, originally graded WI4, but definitely harder than that!

Cool ice features on Kemosabe.

J. Mills
CRAG Head Guide

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