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[TR] Cheam Peak - Big NW couloir thingy attempt #2 (solo) 1/19/2008


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Yeah, I cant wait to get my liscence but nowadays with the whole Learners for a year rule I'm looking at a two year wait still... I'm guessing that Sumallo Bluffs is an avalanche death trap right now ith all those snowy cliffs and gullies above the climbs, whats jarvis bluffs like? I've also read about seabird Falls right by my house but its too warm for ice this low right now...

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Mousetrap = Flood Falls, across from the Husky station west of Hope.


Yep, there are TRable climbs along the Harrison road. The main concern is picking a line that does not drop ice chunks on the road while you climb. Or you could probably do a 50m horizonal bouldering traverse along the base of the ice. The main thing to think about when ice bouldering is falling off, landing on your crampon points and twisting an ankle.

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u can see it from hwy 1 west bound on the way outa Hope on the left. exit 165 there is a paralel road there and the trails off of there. i havent climbed there, but seen people there plenty. i suspect others that read this know way more about it than i do.



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kid, I like your style!


to me, your line seems eminently do-able, and reasonably safe. the 5000-foot gully lies entirely below treeline, so doesn't drain BIG terrain, altho it obviously avalanches when it's warm. by the map, this 'red' gully tops out at about 1650m. then you'll find yourself on a ridgecrest for a ways (safe again), NOT on the face beyond as your red line shows on the photo you showed with your TR. then you reach the gap in the ridge where your friends scrambled up right out of the angel basin on snow in summer - you could bail from this point quite easily (and generally safely), coming down the forest east of the angel basin drainage, which you've travelled before.


the upper part of the route is obviously the crux, and where the most danger lies, BUT: check out this photo of drew's which was previously posted on bivouac.com. the route-line is the brayshaw-touche climb; the kay-zozykian line is somewhere in the vicinity.





the key element in my eyes is that 'your' ridge continues, then butts up against the upper face and turns into a blunt prow (sunlit on rt side). the outflow windloading will be on the RIGHT side of the prow, but with luck you'll find much of the snow stripped off on the left side. if the terrain is too difficult to climb on that side (and it looks pretty darn tricky to me...), you MIGHT be safe sticking IMMEDIATELY pressed up against the rocks on the right side. and if you're with someone, you might even get rock belays. or, it must be said, the windslabs on the right side might be saying "Go Home NOW!"


avalanches are always a risk in winter climbing, so if you DO get up there some day, be sure to dig a quick pit with your iceaxe and do (what the pros would call) a profile. all you're looking for is a weak layer that the snow above will slide on - while this is mostly a skier technique, I've done it a few times with my iceaxe - and GONE HOME a couple times as a result.


(sorry, but you're young and you're plainly just as keen as hell, so I have to "get preachy" for a moment here)


I'll admit to being alive only because of luck a couple times, but I DO try really hard to not get too 'necky'. two thoughts that've stood me in good stead over the years, and that might be worth tucking away in your head:

1. the mountain can't go away, and you can always come back.

2. it's only a piece of f*cking ice! (as a friend advised me as I sketched into more and more serious trouble on a funky waterfall quite a few years ago).


you'll get your route! only 1 failure so far. took me 7 tries to climb Rexford in winter, for instance, and you've got a LOT of years in front of you.


good luck,

be safe,

climb smart,



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Ya, bailing from the spur ridge back into the angel would be a cake walk.... I'm a bit worried about the very top of my gulley where it breaks out a bit into steeper and more open terrain because this is obviously where the slides start from. I will go back for sure if I can find a partner to climb with, it looks like a cool line..

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reagarding current conditions. There was inverted temps in the coq and allison pass(alpine temps were close to zero) today. which helps with the upper elevation snow pack tightening up. that helps the hazard. Avalanche activity was minimal today to say the least. with minor activity on the solar aspects. seems things are gettin a bit better. on another note I walked into Flood falls(mousetrap) today, I am a novice climber at best. but it looked thin to me and gettin thiner with the air temp near zero. water running down the center of the falls. I am happy to help you with your snow profile skill development were I can. I live in Agassiz too.

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