Alpine Club Of Canada

Thunder Bay Section

2006 - 2007 Ice Conditions Archive



Read This First!

CAUTION! Scrambling, technical rock, ice and mixed climbing and mountaineering activities are, by their very nature, potentially hazardous activities. You could be severely injured or killed while participating in them. The information presented in these conditions and trip reports is intended to supplement, NOT replace, sound judgement and experience. The accuracy or truth of any information presented here cannot be guaranteed and may change with time. Conditions in a given area or on a particular climb may (and likely will) vary from day to day or even hour to hour. Ice and mixed climbs in particular may vary considerably in safety, stability and overall condition over a short period of time. The onus is on the individual to verify the applicability of the information presented here to a given time and environment before using it as the basis of any kind of decision. This must not be your only source of information on any given subject. Seek additional information from guidebooks, reputable climbing schools, mountain guides, local climbers, Park Wardens and Rangers. Common sense and a strong will to survive must pervade your thoughts and actions. By using the information contained here, you are releasing the authors, contributors and The Alpine Club of Canada from any liability for any injury, including death, that may occur. You have been warned.

These conditions reports are limited to climbs in the Thunder Bay region, and to areas west of and including Thunder Bay, Orient Bay, Kama Hills and Ice Station Superior. All folks posting conditions are required to log in with a valid email address and password. As well, keep your postings clean and limited to conditions reports - this is not intended as a forum for discussion. Any postings containing foul language, erroneous information, false reports, slander, spam or other malicious content will be edited or removed at the discretion of the webmaster. As a rule the ACC Thunder Bay Section does not promote climbing without protective gear such as helmets or ropes. Any posts that suggest soloing or have photos of climbers without protective gear will be edited or removed. Censorship is definitely NOT cool, unfortunately these are our rules.

That said, get out there and start climbing!

If you want a location on any of the routes listed you may find them in the Community Maps

Here are some very old and outdated maps we have laying around.

Orient Bay Marathon


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Ice Conditions Report Archives
2006 - 2007
2007 - 2008
2008 - 2009
2009 - 2010
2010 - 2011
2011 - 2012
2012 - 2013
2013 - 2014
2014 - 2015

Reflection Wall, Divine Intervention (Orient Bay, Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Dave Rone
Climbed on:4/14, 15
Report:Reports of the ice comeback got us to make the drive one last time. After watching news of sun and warm temps all week, not to mention NO roadside ice I thought it might be a bust. You can imagine our relief when we saw many of the routes still in good shape. We got on Reflection Wall first thing and it was in fine shape (for April 14!). It ended rather abruptly which kept our attention. From the top we could see that Hidden Gully was in fine shape and by the time we got there it was in the shade. Nice long pitch of mellow climbing. We finished up on Hully Gully, my first trip up in 23 years of Orient Bay climbing!
Sunday we hiked in to Wes's new route . . . WOW! It's got to be about the finest new line to go in this year. It gets your attention from the start, gives you an opportunity to collect yourself and then it's super steep and sustained to the top. Way to go Wes! We hoped to do another line or two but everything else was either real wet or dangerously deteriorated so we called it a seson and headed for home. I hope to catch up to some of you again next season.

Hussy's Onus (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:8/10-Apr-2007
Report:Went into Kama to bag a few more new routes. The first one being a new route which I had to back off and the second being Hussy's Onus. The guidebook puts Hussy's Onus and Contemplation way over to the right of where they actually are, so thats why the confusion. Anyway Bryce ended up climbing Hussy's Onus which looked pretty cool. Very nice gully climb that looked like WI4+ climbing, from the ground. The grade quickly changed once you got on it. A unanimous WI5 rating around the horn when we were back on the ground. Very awkward steep climbing. Very cool route I will keep that on my list for things to do for sure. Nice job Bryce. Randy and myself went back Tuesday so I could finish what I started. We finished it and the route info and photos are in the new routes section.

Obstipation (New Route) (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:April 9, 2007
Report:Despite my being in rock climbing mode, Bryce Brown dragged me out for one more ice day with the excellent spring surprises in the Nipigon area. -16C and nasty windchill at 11am had us fleeing Orient Bay despite the presence of 3 beautiful looking long ice lines. -3C at Kama Bay was much more to my tastes!

Obstipation, M6+ R, 40m+- Approach as for the ice routes Hussy's Onus and Contemplation. The climb is located a few hundred metres up and left of Powerline Falls. We walked up the skidoo trail and crossed the bridge over the Powerline drainage, turning left up a faint trail about 500m up. Follow the trail and then bushwack to the talus slope. The climb is visible about 200m left of HO/Contemplation and is a deep twisting chimney with a big curtain of ice at the top and large chockstones near the bottom.

The route begins with stonker drytools over the chockstones (good threads), to the largest which I was forced to drytool around on the face to the right (M5 for a couple moves). The business is the ever narrowing chimney slot with rock gear and then very poor ice. I got severely stuck, my waist and shoulders wedged at the crux. Chopping away some fragile ice features on the left wall made the slot wider by about 6", but I still got good and stuck. Barehanding and chimneying and every other offwidth technique is needed here. Blowing the crux will result in a ledge fall as the ice protection is very poor/nonexistant here. Someone with longer reach could likely place a Lost Arrow way out left. After shimmying through, the chimney opens up and exits on good ice and stemming for 10m to the top. Find a belay/rap station on a healthy white pine about 10m up and left from the top. A standard mixed rack with cams to 2" is more than adequate.

One of the most violently awkward mixed routes I've ever done, much bruising and serious thrutching up the chimney. A good adventure, but one I've no desire to repeat anytime soon. The grade is a rough guide, at times I was more scared than on any WI6 I've managed, but more because of the awkward climbing. M7 went through my head one or twice but more because of the alien technique rather than actual difficulty I think. I recommend doing this BEFORE Easter dinner to make it easier to squeeze through. Thanks for a good day BB.

Also two more M6ish looking routes just to the left, though the ice has delaminated and they should probably get done next season now.

General Conditions (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:6-Apr-2007
Report:After playing in OB today we went for a recon drive to Kama Bay. Condtions there are following suit and look to be in mid December condtion. OB Express has formed this year. The entire Getting Oriented area looks to be in and in good shape. Kamasutra is starting to form but may not make it before the warm weather eventually comes. Ice breakers area in suffering a different fate. Not so good over there allthough all the routes to be there just on the thin side. Some new stuff way over to the left of the area. (this may a route that Matt and James put up last year). All the other climbs that looked to be rotted out have been repaired. Holy Smokes I felt like a fat kid in a candy store. Kama Bay Lookout chimney has also formed up. I spotted 3 news routes in the area so get after them.

General Conditions (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:6-Apr-2007
Report:Went to OB for what I figured would be 40th and final climbing day this year. On route we noticed more and more roadside ice. Unusual for the year we just had. As we made the turn on the highway 11 I begun to think hmmm we may be in for a surprise. Sure as S@#T OB looks like mid December on a normal year. All the major routes are inÖ
Passage At Sundown, Parallax (thin and probably very hard), Waiting for the Dog, Mellow Yellow (has repaired and doubled in size), Hully Gully has a WI4ish top pitch, Wall of Doom in coming in, but it may need a week or two, which we probably donít have, Gomar still huge, Glace Echlatante has been repair and now yellow again, probably doubled in size, Reflection Wall is formed and probably climbable, Amy R has repaird, Casecase is getting better, Obsession has repaired, Tempest is probably still crappy (looks like a false layer) Compulsion has repaired, Comets Tail is in but very hard and thin, Tears of Joy looks like it has been repaired. Andromeda is finally all there. Plenty of new route potential, from moderate to very hard. It was pretty flippin cold out there today. 400 Km winds, -675 C. One of us, I wonít mention his name, (it wasnít me) got the barffies before leaving the parking area.
Randy and myself bagged 2 new routes today. Read about them in the new routes section. Attach are a photo or Reflection Wall and Mellow Yellow.

Grandy Mardy Falls (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Brian Bottan
Climbed on:March 31, 2007
Report:Wes and I headed out to Grandy Mardy Falls for we hoped would be our last chance to dance on good ice but our song wasn't playing. With absolutely no snow on the trail the hike in was a breeze but when we arrived at the climb it was totally engulfed by flowing water. All climbs had water flowing over them with the far left and main climb (right side) carrying the most.

We did however find a narrow line on the left side of the main climb that was semi-dry and provided us with a nice spot to do some laps. Wes put up a nice lead on this grade 4 ice after which we left the screws and draws in to do some sport leading. We each did two leads but by the time I did the last lap foot holds that held body weight 15 minutes earlier began to give way. So we backed up and were gone by noon. If the forecast holds true and the cold temperatures return we may see one more weekend of climbing although I'm sure you'll need the gortex. Cheers.

Compulsion,Aqua Blue, Powerline Falls (OB, Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:25-Mar-2007
Report:Brian and myself headed into Compulsion for last kick at harder ice for the season. We weren't disappointed. The ice was still FAT as Dave has described in his last post. The gear was excellent. The top half is starting to show the effects of the sun. Some spots are honeycombed. Aqua Blue was fantastic. A little bit of water flowing. The gear was excellent. The approach was 2 words. 'hor' ' endous'. A 1 inch ice crust was not enough to even keep my dog a float. Nearly an hour from the rail track to the base of the climb. The trail should be good now. This climb should hang around for a while yet.

Powerline Falls. Andrea took Brian and myself climbing. A lot of water flowing on the river but the ice was still thick enough to not punch through, on the lower river anyway. I managed to punch through a few times on the upper river. The main climbing area is finished in my opinion. A giant snow cone. You would need a spade and hoe to find good protectable ice. All honeycombed, I can't imagine the rain today helped things either. It would still climb fine on TR though.

Obsession/Compulsion, Artesian Wells (Orient Bay, TBay)
Submitted by:Dave Rone
Climbed on:3/17, 18
Report:Obsession was in good shape on Saturday, but the ice at the bottom will be gone soon. But I tell ya what! We LOVE the new parking area directly below the route, check out the picture! Compulsion is in beautiful shape, fat from bottom to top. It's so big it might stay that way for awhile if temps don't go out of sight.

Artesian Wells hasn't changed since Wes's post last week, it's in fantastic shape and we really appreciated the hard pack trail that took us right up to the route! As Wes mentioned the climbing is steep and sustained but it takes great pro all the way. And the cave behind the base is really something! (see the pic of Craig)


Grandy Mardy Falls (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Brian Bottan
Climbed on:March 17, 2007
Report:Randy and I decided to give Grandy Mardy Falls a try on Saturday and we weren't disappointed. Lots of ice that doesn't get much sun provided us with a variety of lines from grade 3 to stiff 4/4+. Featurelesss ice in bullet proof condition lead to many a dinner plates, however, the gear was awesome once you got it in. Sorry no pictures but if you refer back to the Feb24 posting the main climb is virtually the same, only with a polished smooth finish.

Far left line is a short 3 that after 6-7m of vertical ice ramps out through a maze of cedars...an amazing sight (good anchor at top). Main climb is steep with 4/4+ lines on the left and centre and a 3+ up the gully to the right (solid anchor at top). The mixed climb to the right of the main falls had ice from top to bottom, though very thin throughout. A techincal grade 4 climb with some interesting gear placements an awkward moves. To the right of this line is a thin column that when Randy hit it near the top it fractured right across and down to the rock. A few tense moments there. Upon rapple we excavated all the fractured ice from the top of the column, not much ice left now.

Ran into Frank, Leo, Mike, Jack and Stan who spent the day at Powerline Falls. According to them the ice on the river is absolutely huge with some of the falls doubling in size since ice fest. Very little water on the river with all the cold temps. They also experienced brittle ice at the main climb and no running water. Sounds good.

Psycho Icicle (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Brian Bottan
Climbed on:March 11, 2007
Report:After yesterday's marathon performance at Artesian Wells, Wes and I were looking for something a bit easier so we decided to give Psycho Icicle a try. Despite being a fraction of the size it was at this time last year Psycho provided us with variety of lines ranging from grade 2 to 4. First, I warmed up on the far left line which was soft, plastic grade 2 ice that simply eats up the gear. You can stop at the anchor on the left (~45m) or continue to the top for a full on rope stretcher. There is a single sling anchor at the top but all other anchors are covered with ice. Second, Wes lead a surprisingly awkward 3+ line up the middle. Bring small screws (13s) for the first 20m as the ice is thin but the rest will gladly take larger gear. Lastly, I lead the far right which we graded a stiff & steep 4. Straight up the 4 curtains to the top. The gear was good where I needed it but some sections did sound a bit hollow. With temperatures above zero and little to no wind one could not ask for better conditions.

As far as the rest of the corridor the following are rotting in the sun: tempest, ice invaders, cascade falls, and glace eclatante. Complusion, obsession, tears of joy, aqua blue, gomar falls and hully gully still look great. Have fun and climb safe!

Artesian Wells (Whitefish Lake)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:10-Mar-2007
Report:Brian, Nick, and myself made the long trek into Artesian Wells. The lake crossing was excellent compared to most years. We did in just boots in the AM. We did carry our snow shoes as the snow sometimes drifts in the middle. This wasnít the case today. An average of 6 inches of snow all the way. There was about 2 1/2 feet of snow in the bush though, so the snow shoes came in very handy.
The climb starts dead vertical for 25 metres until is ramps back to about 80 degrees for 15 metres or so. Beautiful, featureless, fat ice up to this point. Now the business is at hand. You arrive at the large daggers that have formed over the umbrellas at the top. The column on the right is where I made my ascent. It felt slightly over hanging for about 25 meters or so. The protection was excellent, although I had to dig for it sometimes. It is quit pumpy as it is a lot of arms in this section. After you are atop the column you are directly under the huge umbrellas. I had to traverse to the left in order to climb over a series of smaller umbrellas to summit the route. Even these umbrellas were a little difficult to surmount. A full 60 meters of what felt to us as WI6 climbing. The best tick of the year for this cowboy.
A side note, if you are going out, there is a lot of over head danger lurking. We would have liked to stay a little longer and play on the first half of the climb but there was no real safe place to climb. Even the line I chose was not exactly out of harms way. Bring your gortex as you will most likely get wet. The left side of the climb was rained on. Actually today, with the 50 kms winds, I was getting wet on the right as well as on top. Don't forget to check out the cave behind the climb. The coolest place I have seen in a long time. Felt like the fortress of solitude. Please check in with Paul before you park on his property. He likes to hear how your day went as well so don't be afraid to check in before you leave.

Various (Orient Bay, Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:March 2, 3, 4, 2007
Report:Some more to add to Matt's post. On Friday, Randy and I climbed in the Ice Palace and did what I think is an unformed Pillar of Fear (?). The route looked enticing from the trail and we walked up for a look. Even from below, the hanging curtain looked easy to get to. In it's present state, it is a blast. Some thinner ice with good gear to about 6 or 8 metres of dry tooling with bomber gear and excellent tool placements up under a curtain (fixed spectre at the start of the crux now), which I had to chop through on the left side. Getting established on the curtain was the crux, a move or two of M5+/6- I thought, where I was shown my eyes were bigger than my forearms. About two body lengths of ice establishes you above the fracture line and into good ice screws to the top. Not liking the trees at the top, we belayed off bomber screws and descended from a v-thread. An excellent outing which I will definitely do again, and a relatively unique feature in the area. Finished out the day on Remember the Day, still good though the ice at the top is mostly rotten and detached, I don't really recommend it after the next warm day or two.

Spent Sat up by Getting Oriented with Randy, Wes and Brian. Randy did an excellent lead on Tan Lines, which I think got a 5 in the bulletproof conditions we found it. A couple short but technical cruxes on a freestanding column and some chopping through an overhanging umbrella at the top. Reasonable pro. Wes and Brian found the Seige similar to our last ascent, still excellent. Getting Oriented is turning into a "rockies 5 hookfest", still no good protection till near the end of the crux start. Visited Powerline again on Sunday, in the best shape all season though getting wet. The main falls is easily twice the width it was a couple weeks ago, and you could safely accomodate 10+ leaders there at once. The upper and lower rivers are also massive and fun rambles with great views up high.

I hope the rain in the forecast doesn't materialize, be nice to have a couple more weeks of this! Also, thanks to Matt and Scott and Carolyn and everyone else who got the fest going this weekend, I know it's a lot of work and weather and technical issues conspired against us, but it was a super fun weekend.

Adrenaline Solution etc (Ice Palace OB)
Submitted by:Matt Giambrone
Climbed on:March 3
Report:We climbed the unformed Adrenaline Solution (Grunt?) on Sunday and found the route to be quite fun. Good dry tooling and iced up thin cracks lead to a fun ice curtian finish on the first "pitch" of about 25 meters. Gear was excellent and many options are available, if have big cams (#4 and #5 camalots) they are handy but not strictly necessary, a couple of sutbbies might be handy as well. We found three options to the top none of which looked super good. We climbed the right hand option due to detached ice and/or lack of gear on the others. The first 15 meters is quite fun but the "conifer solution" at the end was...well it was.

Ranxerox Tangent (sp) was quite good with reasonable gear throughout and great stemming along the steepest bit FUN+

High Fidelity very enjoyable climbing with good gear that never got quite as hard as we expected, a couple blades and a few small cams may be handy here.

Eveil Descends great climbing great gear get it before the bottom is gone.

Thanks to all who attended the ice fest this year, hopefully next time we'll get everyone there and master the technology glitches.

Matt

Ice Phantom (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:25-Feb-2007
Report:Here is another easy climb for people looking to escape the crowds during Ice fest. 45 metres of WI2+ climbing. We broke in the trail and beefed up the rap anchor. There is no reason why you should pass it by now. Especially when there will be so little to choose from during the fest. Just bring a mitt full of 13s and 15s to protect the route.

Grandy Mardy/Powerline Falls (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:24-Feb-2007
Report:Brian and myself went into Grandy Mardy again to see how things were progressing. As previously reported, conditions have improved on the main climb. The right and left climbs have not grown since our last visit 30-Dec-2006. Allthough they were still in fine shape. The mixed climb to the right of the main middle falls had ice from top to bottom, though very thin through the middle. If it would have been a few degrees warmer and I would have been able to actually hang on to my screws. Steep, brittle, fragile would be 3 words I would use to describe this climb. Too bad for the temps because it probably was fun. We did a few more laps on the main line as well as the far left line. Good gear, fun steep climbing.

Off to Powerline for the afternoon. As Randy described in his post. Fun, soft ice. Nothing else to say but I will add a photo. Definite must do before the season is out.

Seige and others. (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:February 23, 2007
Report:Invited myself along with Randy and Mike to visit the Getting Oriented area. While Randy and Mike worked on Getting Oriented, I walked down the crag hoping to find one of the mixed routes in shape for an adventure, and instead found absolutely nothing. Java and the other classics in that area are bone dry. There was a little bit of ice on Lost and Found and Smorgasbord, though most of what was there (substantially less than usual) was completely detached and though Smorgasbord would have been a tempting but very hard (for me) lead, I was discouraged by the amount of ice falling when the sun hit the crag - a largish dagger let go as I was leaving.

Seconding Getting Oriented, I had to question the comments below about cruiser WI4 and bomber gear, I thought the lower right pillar still warranted a WI5- at least, and the gear was garbage for the first 10-12 m (though excellent above that). We walked down the crag and also climbed the Seige, which was excellent - reasonable to great pro and a really nice sustained run up 80 degree ice for about 20 m, I thought solid WI4. We removed all the tat from the old rappel tree which is dead and hollow. About 5 m back there is a nice new birch tree with new cord and ring on it. Ice overall was quite brittle even with the recent warmer weather. Also, there is plenty of traffic on the 81 Road, with logging trucks using the area even on weekends - please use common sense when parking and stopping or slowing down to scope out routes!


Ice Breakers and Right (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:21-Feb-2007
Report:More photos or Ice Breakers and the right hand variation.

Thermocules (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:21-Feb-2007
Report:Randy and myself headed up to Ice Breakers today with the intent to climb Ice Breakers proper and the rarely formed right hand variation. They were a no go. Ice Breakers proper was brutally thin down low with a very fragile daggar to start. I suppse one could climb the rock on the left side but getting established on the ice would have been very difficult. The rarley formed right hand variation looked like a very sweet line but way too thin down low. One would have to be extremely bold and comfortable climbing on very small or garbage gear. Too bad because that is a sweet looking line.

I did however try Ice Breakers Arete and promptly backed off as it gave me the willies. I could not find decent gear where I needed it. I could have places a few cams or nuts but the would have been below the first crux.

Randy then did Thermocules without any trouble. It climbed at a good WI3+ with some very awkward moves near the top to get around the overhang.

We dropped rope down the arete to see how bad the ice really was. It was a horrow show. I don't believe GOOD gear was anywhere to be found. The first half of the climb would have been 13s, which is what I expected. But they would have all been BAD 13s, we later found out. Brilliant climbing though. On TR.

River of Frozen Dreams (Ice Station Superior)
Submitted by:Reid Carter
Climbed on:Feb., 16
Report:The RFD has huge ice with many plastic lines. Superior Icefall looks okay, Inferior Icefall still isn't there and Pocomotion is still thin. Gloria, Randy and I ran into James from Winnipeg, John From Wyoming and Sunny and Bryce (TB) so the River saw some traffic. The water is flowing onto of the ice with a layer of ice on top so be careful not to get a boot full.

Ice Palace (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:February 16, 2007
Report:Might as well add my own gear note to the fray. Brainfarted and left a 13cm turbo express near the top of Remember the Day - offering a beer and plenty of good karma to anyone nice enough to return it to me (627-2349). The Ice Palace in general is in fairly rough shape, all climbs are more serious endeavours than usual, with the crux being the finish on most of them. Even the upper half of RTD is detached and eerie sounding. The sun has detached the tops of most climbs there, and most are in no better shape than in December. Also lots of detached hanging features overhead, keep your heads up with these temperature swings!

Old Time Hockey, Obsession, Hidden Gully, Amy R (Kama Bay/Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:11-Feb-2007
Report:

Old Time Hockey was climbed by us again on Saturday. Still no easyway to get to this climb. Park on the highway where the Jackfish river crosses the highway. Walk down the road to the end keeping left. Start cutting up and across the talus for about 600 metres.
Even though the approach is hell the climb is fun. Very thin this year and a real thinker for good gear. Randy was able to get a good collection of screws and stoppers in while protecting this climb. Right now it is climbing about stiff WI4. New anchor up top.

Then off to Orient Bay to climb Obsession for the afternoon. No real thought here. cruiser WI4 climbing on fantastic ice.

Hidden Gully is located on the other side of the highway across from Amy R. Park as per Ice Palace and walk down scenic view road towards the lake. We flagged the cut off where you should walk down to the lake. Don't follow the old guide book directions as the water is still open at the end of this road. Cut straight across the lake here. Plenty of ice so folling through should be an issue. Can't hurt to carry an ice tool in your hand, just in case.
Get on to the raildbed and walk north. You will see a skidoo trail. walk up the trial until a T junction. Walk south until you see our flag tape or until right in front of the climb. Bush wack from here. Thin WI2+ climbing for 45 metres. New anchor up top.

Amy R, Holy Smokes! You have your three sizes...
Wee, Not So Wee, and FRIGGEN HUGE! Probably the fattest I had ever seen this climb. Normally WI2+. I was having trouble finding a WI2+ line on it. Cruiser WI3 is about the easiest. Bring a rack full of ice augers and you probably still won't hit rock. With the present temp you need a hilti gun, some TNT, and a small boy to get your screws to go in. We did a few variations to empty the tank so to speak.


River Of Frozen Dreams (Ice Station Superior)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:3-Feb-2007
Report:Holy Smokes! Could it get any colder? Beautiful SW winds cooled things off nicley and made our day a balmy -45C. I know what your thinking, Sounds like fun! Well it was, only different. Alternativly, I suppose we could have stayed home and painted the kitchens, but wheres the fun in that?
The river is in fantastic shape. Still tons of water flowing. The canyon may even close up this year if it stays cold and the water keeps flowing. All 3 climbs are PHAT! Awakenings is still not in.
Climbed Superior Icefall and pocomotion on the way out. Good ice on Superior, allthough much thinner than normal. Pocomotion is in terrible shape. No photos of Superior or Pocomotion as they have not changed since the last post.

Hully Gully (OB)
Submitted by:Reid Carter
Climbed on:Jan.,27, 2007
Report:Gloria, Clive and I braved the -18C weather and bullet proof ice to climb Hully Gully last Saturday.
Clive is an associate of Gloria's that lives in London, ON and is originally from South Africa. Last Saturday Orient Bay must have seemed like a long way from South Africa!!
The ice was very brittle and there are lens forming on top of the bulges make pulling over them on lead interesting. The top pitch on the right side is a huge hollow glass icicle that made me back down a move or two to put in a screw and going on belay before topping out.

Glace Eclatante (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Brian Bottan
Climbed on:January 27, 2007
Report:Wes and I weren't sure if the sun was going to help us out today but to be on the safe side we hiked into GE. First off we cleared the entrance to the parking lot as we both brought shovels. Depending where you are there's about 12" of snow in OB so a shovel is a must have from now on, especially if you plan to park along the highway. Play it safe and clear yourself a spot!

The walk in was spectular as every tree was covered with fresh snow. Unfortunately the ice wasn't so nice. Again we found it brittle, hollow, and overall very awkward to climb. One really had to dig to find good pro which meant your belayer had to be quick on their feet to dodge the falling shrapnel. Sorry Wes! We did discover that there is now enough snow (insulation) to keep the water flowing at the top of the climb so hopefully conditions will improve.

No other parking lots have been used or cleared except for Glace, Cascade and Tempest. Other than that all climbs seem to be holding up well with the cold temps but the less travelled are starting to collect snow.

Rainy Day Woman (Thunder Bay)
Submitted by:Reid Carter
Climbed on:Jan., 21
Report:Gloria, Laura and I climbed Rainy Day Woman today. It was in very good condition with soft ice and very little rock showing. It is an easy fun outing that is a lot closer than OB and an okay substitute for Ice Stud.

Moraine Creek Falls (Dorion)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:20-Jan-2007
Report:Randy, Brian, and myself went back figuring that this time the climb would have sealed up and offer up some enjoyable climbing. This time we hit pay dirt! The climb was not in the greatest of shape. The entire climb was riddled with mushrooms. Not real easy lines up. All line felt like WI4 to WI4+. Good protection was a real challenge to find. Lots of digging. By the end of the day we were pretty hard pressed to find a line or variation there of, which we had not lead. Good time. The road, with current snow dept, MAY only be driven with a 4X4. I say MAY because it is borderline. lower vehicles will definately push a lot of snow on route. Get after this route before the next snow dump. It is a fun climb in a great setting. The route does not have to be lead, a TR can be set up and then you RAP down.
See other post for a map.

White Lightning (Bowl)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:17-Jan-2007
Report:Now that I am a happily married man I have come down with an ailment that affects all newly married men, flexor underuseious (un-der-use-e-os). Symptoms of this ailment are weekness and fatigue. If left too long then severe atrophy can occur. Fortunatly a cure is known. You must have plenty of Ďhydrates solidicusí (hi-dra-tus sol-id-i-cus), usually found near an ice climb, to be used as resistance in conjunction with ropes, screws, and axes. This remedy must be applied as often as possible. This form of training is the only way to cure this ailment. Well, there is another way, but thatís just crazy talk.
‘Ņ”

So today I had a particularly bad bout with this ailment and some wicked forearm cramping while in the office, so I booked it, called Brian and went in search of the remedy. This remedy was found at White Lightning in the form of very easy WI3 climbing. Just follow the steps all the way to the top. The gear was smaller but very good. There is only one way up this route in present shape. There were 2 top out variations, so that could be enough to spice things up a little.

Wailing Wall Area (South Gillies)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:14-Jan-2007
Report:We had a surplus of inexpensive petrolium so we thought we would watse it driving to South Gillies to look at bare cliffs. So thats exactly what we did and saw. Bare Cliffs. Bone Dry!

Glace Eclatante (OB)
Submitted by:Reid Carter
Climbed on:Jan., 14, 2007
Report:Suprisingly warm for a cold day!
Interesting company, including the webmaster (Cat in the Hat).
Gloria, Deb, Jack, Leo, Mini Mike, Wes and Brian made for lots of fun in at the bottom of the climb in the sun. The top of the climb in the wind was not pleasant.

Glace Eclatante (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Brian Bottan
Climbed on:January 13, 2007
Report:Despite waking up to -30C temperatures Wes and I decided to try the always warm and fuzzy south facing Glace Eclatante. There is now 6-10 inches of snow in OB so a shovel should now be part of your gear. We cleared the entrance to the Glace parking lot and broke trail into the climb. The snow helps significantly with the talis slope but covers the holes so be careful.

The climb looked to be friendly but Wes soon discovered that it was anything but that. Brittle, rotten ice, covered by false layers made for difficult gear placements and an uneasy feeling. Basically it felt like you were climbing a giant cardboard box where your tools would easily break through but not into anything solid. The wind at the top was fierce, stirring up the snow which made the decision to head for home an easy one.

Around the corner, Snowflakes looks to be coming in nicely albeit still thin. Other than that the rest of the corridor looks the same as previous weekends.

Moraine CReek Falls (Dorion)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:6-Jan-2007
Report:Due to very little/no snow in the area I thought that this climb would be ripe for the picking as we would be able to take a 4x4 in and avoid the 9 km hike. We were wrong. The warm temp have not totally closed this climb up. Major water flow down the centre and very hollow ice on either side with water running within. If you go bring an umbrella and plenty of gortex. I would recommend a 4x4 or a vehicle with high clearance. I think if the current forcast holds true it should get cold enough to to close it up by the weekend. Maybe waiting 2 weeks would be better. Trouble is, if we get snow. I have attempted the drive in the past with about a foot of snow and it was dicey but do-able. Attached is a map with directions to the area. When the climb closes up there are lines from WI3 to WI4, plus a few mixed line that would be M10 and harder. A very unique setting indeed.
To salvage the day we ended up at Powerline Falls. No previos posts mentioned that climbing can begin at the foot bridge and contiues all the way up to the main ice climb. mostly small ice ramps but there are 3 larger climbs which makes this a very long WI2 ice climb in itself, at about 400 meters. It is very much worth going. Plus it is a good warmup before getting on the steep ice of the main climb. The main climb is virtually the same size as previous photos but more welded together and the gear is significantly better.

Tears of Joy (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:January 6, 2007
Report:Jenn and I made a quick trip out for the morning to run up this classic. I thought a newer photo was in order, it seems the ice has solidified much more than a few weeks ago. Excellent ice and protection throughout; first pitch harder than the second and I thought very stiff for the guidebook grade of 3+, not hard but definitely some interesting climbing. Very worthwhile and enjoyable. If using the left hand rap anchor, beware of the enormous amount of loose rock and debris as the ice has not yet formed on the top left and there's plenty of missiles there.

Hell's Chimney, Icebreakers Arete (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:January 5, 2006
Report:Bryce and I visited Kama with intentions of climbing Hell's Chimney and Icebreakers and were very surprised at conditions up there. Icebreakers has formed two independent lines, both touching and both looking reasonably fat from the road. Up close, the regular route is very spooky looking and completely detached for the first 20m, and the left hand line has good ice but is only 1/2" thick for the first 20m. Might have been tempting but the entire wall was pouring way too much water so we left it alone. Hell's Chimney was excellent, ice in the back of the chimney was more or less continuous, save for the crux at the narrow bit which is awkward over a small umbrella that I was fat enough to have to climb sideways A couple good pick torques in the left wall and some grunting there (M5, great screws/cams). Icebreakers Arete presented an engaging yet super fun lead on suspect stubbies and very hollowed/featured ice, best thought of as a mixed route. Fun ice to climb with good rests, and the usual overhanging business at the top is there but spooky, and couple freehanging daggers that are detached for most of their length. I thought technical WI5, with an R at the bottom if you don't bring any rock gear, and perhaps and S at the top. I found a couple finger-size cams useful on both routes, more contientious types should also bring one or two baby angle pins with them, and a handful of 10/13cm screws. Both routes are excellent outings in their present condition, with the arete being quite serious. Thermocules is also there but very thin/mixed at the top. The highlight was the amazing sunsets over the lake at the end of the day.

Obsession/Remember the Day/Ranxerox Tangent (OB/Ice Palace)
Submitted by:Bryce Brown
Climbed on:2 Jan 2007
Report:Went with Sunny to Obsession and then into the Ice Palace. Obsession is as posted - good grade 4 - was brittle first thing in the AM - now I remember why we usually leave it till the end of the day after the sun hits it!
In Ice Palace RTD was in good shape - thinner than most years, but very protectable and very FUN. Climbed at 3+/4- range throught the crux bit.
Then we dropped the ropes down Ranxerox. Very fun climbing, especially the top bit in the very featured, poorly protectable, slightly overhanging corner (I thought grade 6). A braver man then me may have a look at leading it, but it looks like challenging gear!
See pics of RTD and Ranxerox.
Also Eveil Descence looks good grade 5, 10% still too thin (maybe thinner), and High Fidelity is coming in nicely. Off the Couch and Adrenalin Solution look big, if these mixed babies are on your ticklist.

Getting Oriented (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:December 30
Report:This climb looked great from the road but proved to be the most difficult I have ever found it. The "normal" left hand line was not yet formed and the usual 4+ pillar on the right hand start was at least a stout WI5/5+ with no real protection and two very large overhangs to surmount (we broke one off). It reminded me of the business part on Child's Play. I'm hoping the traffic and rain have welded the brittle cauliflowers and chandeliers together into something more protectable. The upper half goes about 3+ on good, if brittle, ice. The other classics in the area (Deception Chimney, Tan Lines, etc.) looked equally good from the road but I'm told they were in similar difficult conditions. The crux of the day was definitely the approach. Little or no snow meant a few near misses and big tumbles on the way up and rappels on the way back down. Definitely not nearly as easy/safe as when there's ample snow to kick steps in! Allow about twice the normal time to approach these routes.

Grandy Mardy Falls (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:30-Dec-2006
Report:Brian and I went to try our luck on Grany Mardy Falls. We weren't disappointed. Tons of Ice ranging in difficulty from WI3 to stout WI4+ We climbed them all. Tons of fun. Great gear on all routes. The main (middle) climb is soaking wet. You can avoid the water by climbing the usuall gully on the right side. The Left climbs are wet but nice plastic ice that eats tools and gear. The right climbs are the steeper climbs. The ice was brital and very featured. The gear was fine.
Descend the area via New rap stations installed above the Left and Right climbs. The middle climb builds too much ice to leave a usefull permanent anchor.

Glace Eclatante (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:December 28
Report:Contrary to my earlier posting, the recent cold temps have drastically improved conditions on this climb since my visit on Saturday. As it was -21C at Kama this morning we elected to go climb in the sun out of the nasty windchill at GE. The left side is fat and yellow and plastic fun, a couple of options from WI3-4 on the main wall and harder in the corner. We also chose one of a couple different mixed options on the right side, which is almost non-existent at the moment. The rock actually lends itself quite well to mixed climbing up broken corners with good rock protection. Several lines to chose from, starting at easy M5. The ice ribbon we finished up proved to be the crux, steep and detached. I imagine this will all fatten up nicely over the coming days though.

Powerline Falls (Kama Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:December 27
Report:Visited Kama Bay today with Frank and Randy. The whole area seems to be coming along very nicely and definitely lots to do there - I'm planning to spend more time there over the coming days, best I've seen of the major areas so far this season. We scoped out the Icebreakers area, the main climb forming two distinct lines, one of which is touching, things still look awful thin through the binos though. Post Coitus, a newer route far left looks great. Getting Oriented, Deception Chimney, Tan Lines, etc. all look great. See photos. We spent the afternoon at Powerline Falls (and we weren't the first this season), lots to do there, everything from 3+ to 6 and some mixed. We did 3 different lines, all fun but quite brittle ice everywhere - had some very cold overnight lows in the area lately. About 2-4" of snow - easy approaches!

White Lightning (The Bowl)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:December 26
Report:Jenn and I visited White Lightning today and found good conditions - if it was early November! Quite a thin undertaking. There is ample water flow and the climb was fattening noticeably in the cold as we climbed. Lower part thin, you could place stubbies though I opted for good protection options in the rock on the left of the apron. The crux hourlgass has a about a 5 foot detached section, though it's much fatter and more featured than it looks from the ground, and you can tap and hook your way up it - it's quite brittle. Good screw at the start. Upper ramp narrow but plenty fat for long screws. I suspect even one more cold night will make this a much more reasonable endeavour. Climbed about 3+ I thought, with the usual "off-balance bit" in the middle. Worthwhile. No other lines looked reasonable - mostly thin and detached or not there. Not much on Curtain Call, and absolutely nothing on Ice Stud. Also drove up Mountain Road, absolutely nothing at Climbers Cliffs or on Mount McRae.

Glace Eclatante, Cascade Falls (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:December 24
Report:Arrived to -17C in OB Christmas Eve morning so headed up to Glace Eclatante, which was raunchy looking, with some daggers threatening to let go in the wild temperature swings over the only reasonable line for our beginner's first day. Instead, it warmed up rapidly and we visited Cascade Falls, which was in excellent shape. Did most variations, the left side is great ice and the right side sports several interesting features (cauliflowers) and steeper-than-they-look columns up to about 4/4+ which are well protected. Excellent conditions on this climb. The bolts on top (spinners) were placed in natural weaknesses and are garbage in my opinion and should be treated as such - there is a good rap/belay anchor 10-15m back or walk off. Most climbs in OB that are shaded are in good shape, though off to a slow start as they would normally be in this condition in early November. Anything sunny is a total write-off for now. Plenty of water on most routes and finally some snow (about 4"), so with the seasonal temps forecast things should improve a lot over the next week or two.

Remember The Day, Evil Des Sens (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:23-Dec-2006
Report:Nick, Jenn, Shawn, and myself all for into the Ice Palace to see what kind of trouble we could get in. Nick and Jenn jumped on Evil Des Sans While Shawn and myself jumped on Remember the Day. Remember the day was fantastic WI3+ climbing with a harder crux maybe closer to WI4-. Great throughout. I originally wanted to get on Ranxerox Tangent but the little voices told me it didn't look safe. So I told the voices that I would rap the route and inspect to prove them wrong.
Well I'll be dammed, those voices were right. The last pillar to the lower anchor, which was the only pure ice finish, was in very bad shape. No gear, and very little solid ice that would support body wieght.
Then it was off to Evil Des Sens. Pouring water down the first half of the route. No ice gear until the top of the first column. From there good to excellent gear could be found anywhere. Very cauliflowered ice through the first crux (middle column). Mostly hooking. The second crux, upper curtain, was the hardest section in my opinion. Very awkward, yet fun, climbing. The majority of the route went at WI4 but the second crux bumped the over all rating to WI4+ in my opinion.
10% Real did not look very safe as of yet. The middle column look detached and fragile.
In all a fantastic day out climbing with friends.

Ice Invaders (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Brian Bottan
Climbed on:December 22-2006
Report:Tara and I climbed Ice Invaders today which was a first for both of us. Water is flowing to the left but if you stay to the right you can avoid most of it. The ice was soft because of the very warm temps (above zero) and we had no trouble finding good gear. Climbed at an easy grade 2 and a mix bag of screws as 13's, 16's and even 19's will get the job done. Despite the fact that the anchor tree seemed solid it was severely undercut and leaning against a huge boulder...which seemed to teeter right to the fall line. So I removed it and built a new one to the right of the climb on a spruce tree. A great climb for beginners or those just looking to have some fun.

Conditions for the rest of the corridor are as follows: Hully Gully, Tempest, Gomar, and Aqua Blue look fantastic. Hully looks massive from the road but its probably still flowing. South facing climbs are really rotted out because of the warm temps. Cascade Falls looked the same as last week, two climbers were at the top when we drove by. Obsession looked worse than last week as it must of had its share of evening sun but it would still go. Didn't drive past Tempest so I dont' know about the rest. Remember for those climbing Cascade Falls there is a cable anchor 25 feet back from the top of the climb on a large birch tree. Virtually no snow in the corridor so climbers should have no trouble using the established parking lots or where necessary, well onto the shoulder. Climb safe!

Obsession & Tears Of Joy (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:17-Dec-2006
Report:Obession was in fine shape. It was a little more friendly this weekend as apposed to last. Great gear throughout. Photo didn't show much difference so I didn't add it here.

Tears of Joy was tons of fun but a lot of water flowing. Un-avoidable on the first pitch so bring your gortex. Good gear, technical WI3+ climbing. Second pitch had a real fun , dry, line up the right side. Great gear.

Aqua Blue (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:16-Dec-2006
Report:Excellent climb in prime shape. A little thin to start but it is easy climbing on WI3+ ice. Excellent protection throughout. Bring some 13's and 16's. You may sink a few 22s if you need them. Fresh anchor up top.
The approach is not too bad right now with the low snow level. If you want it, go get it now while the going is easy. New flag tape marks the trail.

White Lightening (Tbay)
Submitted by:Matt Giambrone
Climbed on:12/11/06
Report:Despite the good advice we got from Wess to drive straight to Nipigon. Dean, James and I were in Tbay and had to stay till evening so we decided to have a go on the area classic. We found it to be a bit poorly bonded with water running behind it ( as well as pouring over it) on the bottom third. The ice quality improved a bit in the steep bit and above which was welcome as the bolted belays had provided the only pro up till that point. Unfortunatly the steep sections created an amazing shower effect that insured even the fastest climber would get wet. Jlo had the worst of it on the sharp end but we all got nicely soaked both ascending and descending. On the bright side the route should be challenging but enjoyable when things refreeze as the running water restructures the route. Enjoy!

Amy R (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:10-Dec-2006
Report:A great day with the wives on AmyR. Very fun WI2+ climbing on wet ice. Some places were a little mushy but they were easily avoidable. Protection was excellent.

Obsession & Compulsion (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:9-Dec-2006
Report:Brian and Myself wanted to become Obsessive Compulsive again. So off to Obsession we went. I lost Rock, Paper Scissors again so It was Brian's lead. fantastic climbing with very good gear. He probably could have used 22's all the way up had we brought them. Fun climbing on featured WI 4 ice. The sun this afternoon may have welding it together a bit better.

Then, by my luck, it was my turn to have a crack at Compulsion. Holy Crap! is the first thing that comes to mind. I could probably throw a few cuss words in there too. Then I could probably say, How much fun did we just have? Solid WI4+ climbing up to the no hands rest in the cave. WI5+ through the 15 foot crux. Much thinner than most years. At present the crux is almost a free hanger if it wasn't for the 1 inch base where it attaches to the lower climb. I was able to get a decent piece in the floor of the cave and a short 11cm screw in the ice behind the curtain. Had I bothered to take a #2 or 3 lost arrow out of my pack, I could have probably pounded that in for a bit better crux move protection.
Then it is basically pucker up and go. Swing out on to the curtain using the rock on the right and on the wall in the back of the cave for your feet. Mostly arms here. Gain higher placements and then commit your feet. Easy Big Fella! don't be kickin it! So now that you crapped yourself, it is pretty much straight forward steep climbing for another 15 feet or so until is lays back to WI3 climbing to the anchor at the top.

Glace Ecletant (sp?) (OB)
Submitted by:Bryce Brown
Climbed on:9 December
Report:Went in with Jen and Randy at -1C and sunny. Beautiful and warm on the climb - too warm. By the afternoon it was like climbing a slurpee. Left side is good and fat, about grade 4, right side is still coming long with lots of hanging daggers and curtains. There is also a great looking grade 5 piller in the middle (just on the right side of the thick stuff). Watch the talus field on the way in/out - some loose boulders and just enough snow to make it slippery could break a leg pretty easily...

All (Ice Palace Area)
Submitted by:Bryce Brown
Climbed on:9 December
Report:Walked into the Ice Palace to check conditions - most things are pretty thin still. Remember the Day looks in good shape maybe 4ish through the crux. Eveil Descence would be a great tick right now in full-on thin grade 5 conditions if you can negitiate the start (not touching down but almost). 10% Real is almost there, but the top 1/3 is too thin yet (you could do the bottom 2/3 and v-thread off). See pics.

Hully Gully (OB)
Submitted by:Reid Carter
Climbed on:Dec. 8, 2006
Report:Great climb with Jack, Gloria and me.
Fun full ice with a great rail (thanks to Wes & Brian) that is worth the trip in for 120m of 2+ ice. We also went to Tempest where there were 2 other groups, quite a croud for Friday at OB. Thunder Bay ice is a bit behind but Orient Bay is definitely in!

Hully Gully, Tempest (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:3-Dec-2006
Report:Andrea and myself climbed Hully Gully and Tempest on Sunday. The first pitch of Hully Gully was very cauliflowered. The middle gully and upper pitch looked very full. We never did them.
Tempest was in the best shape I ever climbed it in. Not as think as normal but plastic all the way.

Gomar (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:2-Dec-2006
Report:Randy, Carol, Brian, Myself went in for what looked to be real nice conditions. This time, we were right. The ice was fantastic. The protection was excellent. Mostly 16's and 19's depending on the line you chose. We climbed lines from WI2+ to WI4.

Tempest (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Reid Carter
Climbed on:December 1, 2006
Report:Gloria and I did run out to OB to check conditions.
Most of the classics are coming in and a trip out there is certainly worth the drive.
It doesn't look like a great year so far but good climbing on the major routes.
See the pictures.

Mellow Yellow (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:26-Nov-2006
Report:Things seem to be getting a little colder in OB. The only climbable route on Saturday was Mellow Yellow, if you are comfortable with 10's and 13's only. All screws were solid if that is any consolation. We ended up doing the usual line on the leftm which we felt climbed a lot harder than normal due to the extreme thin ice, maybe easy WI4 through the crux near the top. Even though the climb was thin it was well bonded and did not feel like it looked.
Sunday we ended up back there again. We did not bother to drive the corridor until later. Mellow Yellow conditions worsened over night. Much thinner. We ended up leading the far left and much steeper side. Again very thin ice and short protection. I managed to get a few 15's in the rampy sectio near the tree anchor. Down low only took 10's and 13's. After climbing we went to meet the other party on Hully Gully. To our surprice Hully Gully built significantly over night. Up close the ice looked like protection would have been a chore if at all possible.
The rest of OB is filling in very slowly. If current weather persists, then OB should have a few more moderates ready for next weekends thin ice keeners.

General Conditions (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:November 18, 2006
Report:Not worth the drive unless you really want to take your tools for a walk. Significantly less ice than two weeks ago, when it was pushing things then. What is left after the warm spell is not well bonded to the rock. Looking at Mellow Yellow from the road, I could see areas where I had placed mediocre stubbies were now bare wet rock, and the whole thing looked like it wanted to collapse. We also scoped out Andromeda Weeps and the Freeze Fraze/Comet's Tail (usually good for mellow early season mixed) and they all looked worse. Wes noted the ice he and Brian climbed on Hully Gully two weeks back was not even there. The cold overnights this week should fix things by the weekend, but please exercise good judgement out there and expect to back off if necessary. Snowstorm starting as we left.

General Conditions (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:11-Nov-2006
Report:Brian and myself were out in OB to do more trail work. The ice is coming in again after the warm week we just had. Still not climbable yet. Very slushy and unprotectable. Hully Gully and mellow yellow, which were climbed last weekend do not even have enough ice to hold body weight. By next weekend these 2 will be ready to go.

Mellow Yellow (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Nick Buda
Climbed on:November 4, 2006
Report:Nice to get an early run at things - sort of like preseason ice climbing! Jenn, Reid, Gloria and myself had an excellent day at Mellow Yellow today - thanks very much Wes and Brian for saving that one for me (I think...). Much thinner than previous "first days", though it is a bit early. Usual WI3 line up the left side quite thin and fairly serious near the top, gear okay but the ice is soft and not well bonded yet. Also did a more serious lead on the right edge, no gear to speak of for the first 20m and very slushy/thin. Top half excellent with good gear. Unfortunately, drove by today to do trail work and most climbs were collapsing in the warmth (MY and Hully Gully were still about the same). Reflection Wall et al. had collapsed by mid-afternoon. However, water levels and ice amounts are exceptionally good at the present time in OB and it's worth noting that these climbs formed with only a 3 or 4 day cold snap - in other words, once the warm weather ends, should be a good season. Also, thanks to the efforts of several local ACC members this weekend, all the usual access trails are cleaned up and ready for another season. Thanks to all those who took the time to remove a few safety hazards.

Hully Gully (Orient Bay)
Submitted by:Wes Bender
Climbed on:4-Nov-2006
Report:Brian Bottan and myself climbed Hully Gully early in the AM as I thought the colder the ice the better when it comes to very early season ice. We climbed it in 3 pitches.
First Pitch I lead and found the protection to be adequate. I was able to dig in a few 15 cm screws amongst all the cauliflowers. The top half only took 13s and 11s.
Second Pitch we soloed as it is about 40 degrees.
Third Pitch Brian lead. He had to avoid the large opening and running water in the middle so he choose to go up the left side and traverse to the middle and then up. His gear seemed fine as well. Small screws but still would have held.
We replaces the anchor at the top of the first pitch. We did not have enough material to replace the anchor at the top of the third pitch however. The anchor was OK but looked old. Who ever goes up there next please replace it, if I havenít already done so.

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