Monday, April 28, 2008

Spring Skiing

We were not quite ready to put our skis away yet, and the recent dump of snow made it impossible for us to do so. We were out in Waterton a couple of days this weekend, on Friday we skiied from Forum Ridge down to Cameron Lake. Conditions were pretty awesome for this time of year. The snow was boot-top but more wet and heavy than the tradtitional dry powder of the Rockies. It was still pretty awesome though, and the fresh snow from earlier in the week had settled nicely and bonded with the layers below.

On Sunday we skiied from Summit Knob to Cameron Lake. The sun came out in full force over the weekend, and it was amazing to see how much snow had vanished from when we were there on Friday. There was now a pretty strong sun crust built up, but once it softened up it made for some good skiing. The snow is pretty wet and heavy now, and we watched a lot of wet slides on the north and west aspects of Mt. Custer and the south end Forum Ridge. Summit was considerabley more shaded by the trees, and the snowpack was a lot more stable.

That being said, I think skiing in Waterton is pretty much done for the winter with the temps forecasted for this week. On our way out Sunday we saw a party climbing - I assume it was Blair and Chris?

Thursday, April 24, 2008

April Party


With the weather starting to get nice this weekend, it looks like some people are coming down to play on the Hump and the Info Bureau Sat and Sunday (April 25, 26). If anyone is interested, feel free to join in. Stop by Chris' place next to Tamarack mall Sat. night. There is space in the backyard for camping - but it may be damp. 859-2452

Chris Morris - hope you can make it out - Blair and Dave are heading up the Hump on Sunday.

I have been thinking of having a season opener party in April. I bought a new kayaking movie, and was thinking about asking around to see if someone has king lines. I thought if we get the kayaking and climbing crowds together, we should be able to get a big shin dig going. I am hoping to do host it on a Friday night and have a big BBQ. I am still trying to figure out the location and date. I have a projector and screen.


Sunday, April 20, 2008

April Snow

Waterton got almost a foot of fresh snow this weekend. The drop in temperatures has refrozen the lake. The ice is also starting to come back in.

Irish dreams is still fat. Bridalveil (Quick & Dirty) had fallen completely down and is now in very early season shape and not really climable. 4x4 on the way up to Cameron (before the hairpin corner) is thickening up and is probably in shape. This is a mixed climb that you can probably top rope if you have some long slings. Expert's choice is still gone.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Tick Ridge

1. Right Corner
2. Orange Marmalade
3. Black Cat
6. Classic Loss

starting out under the "Orange marmalade" roof

Last August, Anne, Ronna and myself headed up to tick ridge to check out some old lines. We wandered up a short, insignificant route just to the right of Orange Marmalade. It was about 5.5 or so with adequate but certainly not exceptional gear. Looking back on my notes, the crew decided to call this one Tug Boat. I have a feeling the Wardens in the 80's probably climbed it. They had reportedly done a number of training climbs in that neck of the woods.

Putting in gear on the line right of Orange Marmalade

If you are looking to check out a new area, tick ridge has enough climbs to make a day. My suggested hit list would be - warm up on right corner, scramble over to classic loss. After classic loss (5.7), see about putting up a new line on one of the cracks that spilt off from it. If you still have any fingers left, try Engagement (just below the classic loss top anchors - 5.6). If you don't have a knifeblade to replace the broken one at mid height, try just top roping it.


Waterton Slabs

Looking up at Inland Fishery

The upper slabs on Crandell's south face have quite solid rock - a relative rarity in the park. There are two bolted routes on this face, and two rarely done corner climbs. Approach by bashing north from the start of the switchbacks on the Bear's hump trail.

A few hundred meters to the left of the slab lies another slabby arete - Scrambled Eves. This is one of the nicer long routes in the park. It is mostly a scramble with a few technical moves down low. Just make sure to stay on the top side of the arete, if not you will wind up on another climb (eyes above (5.7) )


Wednesday, April 09, 2008

April 12-13

Well it looks like the weather is going to be stellar this weekend. For those that haven't been down to the park in a while, there is still a sizeable amount of snow down low. It is, however, quite patchy. For instance, last weekend I had to dig through 5 feet of snow to break into my shed. However, places that didn't get drifts are quite clear. Blair mentioned the trail up to Vimy required constantly putting on and taking off snow shoes. With that in mind here is a list of some of what is possible

1. Ice climbing - quite a few routes are still in excellent shape. Irish dreams on Vimy has been fattening up everynight. The top pitches of both compound gullies are still in, but the bottom is definitely out. Sullivan's is quite fat, and its nearby routes are also nice and large. Crypt would be in great shape.

2. Rock climbing - with the warm sun and warm weather, the hump would be great. Ticks are out. I think the choice would still be a bit cold to climb, but this may be the year to get up there soon and jump on some new routes before others get to them. I am taking off to Stonehill for the weekend. If you are interested in hooking up down there, send me an email - cgoble72 at the gmail thing.

3. Kayaking - nothing is flowing but the Kan. I am hitting Kootenai falls on Saturday even though it will be on the low side (4000cfs)

4. Hiking - intermittent snow cover makes this hard. You could hike up the red rock highway and then try Bellvue ridge. That is quite a nice outing. You can get a little bit of scrambling by sticking to the arete's edge. It is fairly snow free.

If you are looking for partners for this weekend - post it here - don't be shy

Found Gear!

Hey everyone Found Gear!

I was out on the Bear's Hump on Sunday and found
2 cams on the ledge above the first tier of climbs.

They are the old style Camalots - 0.5 and 0.75, marked
with yellow, and attached to a small yellow s.chamonix

If you could ask around or maybe post it on the
Waterton Blog, I'm sure the owners would like em back.



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