Tuesday, 10 December 2013


After two days of brutal cold it finally started to warm up here a little. We had spent the first two days at Nameless Wall mostly in the Bingo Cave not climbing very much.  There are a few routes in the cave that are supposed to be some of the most difficult in North America that I was really hoping to try, but the cold was making it very difficult. On Sunday near the end of the day I finally got on the most hyped up route there, "Inglorious Bastards" which was originally rated M13 and for the time being has settled at M12.

Happy to have an extra heavy down jacket and puffy pants.
My first try on it I just wanted to find the holds and check out the moves. I was fortunate to have Whit Magro show me where most of the holds were so I wouldn't need to spend much time searching around. When I finally got to start climbing the route I was shocked at how easy the moves felt. I was expecting the holds to be small and technical and the moves to be big. It is however a pretty long roof so the forearm pump would definitely be a factor when linking all the moves together. I was also a bit worried because the big ice dagger at the back of the cave had just broken off eliminating a good stance a couple moves into the business of the horizontal roof making the route full value.
The first hard move.

Its a long way to the lip of the roof.

On Monday the temps were a lot warmer than they had been, but still pretty cold for hard climbing. For my warm up I climbed Inglorious bolt to bolt to refresh my mind about where the holds were and workout the foot holds a little better. After belaying my wife on her project, "The Straights of Gibraltar" it was time to try to piece everything together. I didn't really expect to link the whole route first try, but I took a long a few ice screws and some gear to build an anchor just in case.
Rebecca working on The Straights of Gibraltar.
 Starting out I felt good, but unsure how things would go. Getting into the roof I hit a rhythm and quickly worked my way out the huge roof. Before I new it I was getting close to the lip and at the first pseudo stance and could shake my arms out a little. I made the last clip and another move or two and I got into a stance with a good foot hold where I could get some recovery in my arms before doing the last move to get to the ice. The last move is also the most tenuous, so I had to make sure to do it as smoothly as possible. Any thrutching around would have likely made my pick slip out of the shallow pocket as I swung my body around 180 degrees to kick my feet into the ice.
Tagging the ice.

After getting established on the ice I hung out for a while and worked the lactic acid out of my arms before swinging around to the front of the ice curtain.

Easy cruising up the vertical ice

 I'm super happy to have climbed this route. I did it in three tries total over two very cold days. Thanks to Rusty and Justin Willis who were there and snapped some photos of my ascent.

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