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Ice climbing


Smee

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Smee,

check out the Portland guide of rock climbing. It has a section on what routes freeze in the winter in the Gorge. I'm out of Portland as well and looking for a cold and snowy winter (if I don't move to Steamboat which plans are in the making).

Let's climb if I stay

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The Canadian Rockies are a great place to learn, lots of moderates there to let you get into it without getting in over your head.

Even Lillooet has its reliability problems, if you are going to drive that far might as well drive the extra few hours to Yoho/Banff/Jasper. It is a 10-12 hour drive from Seattle.

That said, the Cascades and Washington desert offers some very good climbing, a guidebook is in the works to be published hopefully Fall 2002. Stay tuned.

If you absolutely must get on some ice, then maybe glacial ice would suffice? The Coe on Hood has some great serac'ing!

Alex

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I'm unsure of the ice climbing potential around Portland, but I'd strongly recommend learning the basics of ice on stable serac (glacial) ice. Learning to climb in the winter at say, Lilooette isn't ideal because it's cold, the days are short and many of the ideal intro pitches form the first pitch of a multi pitch route (tres un-cool to clog those areas). You can learn basic body positions and develop specific strengths climbing serac ice that will make your intro to the bigger world of ice vastly more satisfying. Learning how to place screws when bouldering 2 feet off the deck on vertical serac ice is much more sensible than reducing yourself to a useless mess learning new sytems while facing a 100 footer on what's otherwise a grade 2 pitch. I'm unsure of recent snow levels, but one can usually get very high quality mileage on the lower Coleman glacier at Baker until November. If there is fresh snow in that area be very careful not to fall in small slots or through lenses of water ice covering pools of water. Overall however, get as much mileage as possible prior to winter. I'd also strongly recommend learning to down climb (via ice bouldering) at your lead level.

GB

 

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I hear that ice climbing in the gorge is really short- like 3-4 hours per day one or two days per year. I have gone up on the Elliot glacier on hood two times this year. Head up to the cloudcap or tilly jane campgrounds on the north side and then its a short hike up onto the glacier. Watch out for unstable ice though. Some kid has already died up there this year.

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Assuming you live in western PNW, it just isn't easy. Banks lake area will be the closest (semi) reliable ice and I'm sure you might be able to hook up with climbers on this site to go there with. Top roping is the best way to practice your techniques and I believe there is top roping at Banks. If you are willing to travel, I learned in Provo Canyon in Utah and although the place was empty in the mid 80's, I think it's extremely popular now. Every time I've gone back there's been a bunch of top ropes on the Ist pitch of Stairway and it seems there are always seminars going on. I'm sure you could easily hire a guide in SLC. Also, The Great White Icicle is probably the finest first multi pitch ice climb you can find as a beginner. Easy belay stations and very safe. You get to walk off too. Utah is also closer than Colorado! But if you want to go further, then go to Ouray. See previous post for that subject. You can search "Ouray" if you can't find it. If you don't have gear, pay attention to the yard sale section here. People are up grading all the time and selling old stuff, but old stuff is not bad! You should have rigid boots for sure and of course a helmet ALWAYS! Find a pertner who wants to learn too. There are some great books...Chouinard's "Climbing Ice" and Jeff Lowes "The Ice Experience" are the best. I saw a new one by Falcon Press and also, Jeff Lowe has instructional videos. These are highly reccomended. Hopefully you have a good solid background climbing trad routes because you need to know about setting pro and belay anchors for sure. Pay attention to avalanche danger and good luck! DPP

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I learned to Ice climb in Montana, there is tons of easy stuff. The adventure is in discovering it for yourself.

Here is the beta, bring your big fat truck, chains, tow rope (winch is better), and lots of shovels. The more climbers in the car - the more pushers you have. Go fast, don't stop till you get to the parking lot.

Tackle shows up in the Hyalite parking lot in his bright Orange suit and a harem of female truck pushers!

I'd like to say more about it, but my freinds who still live there would kill me.

 

 

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Bad rumors = no ice fest in Lillooet. However anyone that has a linking for lots of booze, some ice climbing (high level of skills not needed) and a good attitude is most welcome to join me on my winter trips smile.gif You can bet I'll be out there smashing down some ice curtains and dislodging large dinner plates into my forehead and onto my belayers.

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quote:

Originally posted by Dru:

I heard Lyle has already reserved 100 kegs for the next lillooet ice fest. where did you hear the bad rumor??

If it is so then cool. Perhaps you should contact your Canadian Comrade to confirm I can bring all my drunk friends up there to sip away......?????????!!!!!!!!!!

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quote:

Originally posted by Dru:

I saw that Nat Geo article. It was by Junk Krakhore
rolleyes.gif
wasn't it? He should have called it Into Thin Ice. Then Anatoli Boukreev could have hired a ghostwriter to wtrite a 50 000 word rebuttal...

If you don't have something nice to say, don't say anything at all.

Though I admit to sometimes being entertained your spray, I think comments such as those listed above can scare away well known climbers. Personally I think it would be really cool if JK would post on this website, but he certainly will not if you continue to post messages such as yours.

This thread was started by a new ice climber looking for information. Please provide only information and leave your wit to other spray postings. I think a little self censorship is in order. I know I am not alone in this sentiment.

I mean to say this only in a friendly way. Please think about the repercussions of your messages and what this website has become.

Peace,

Matt Heller

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