Winter Climbing



  • Threads are good if you do them right. its how all the big kids play these days. very cool in that it allows you to bail anywhere that the ice is thick enough without leaveing any gear. Water crossings freak me out. Comming back from drop Swim Or Die the water came up over my skis 3 times. Just kept moving as fast as I could and hoped for the best...



  • @NickG said in Winter Climbing:

    Threads are good if you do them right. its how all the big kids play these days. very cool in that it allows you to bail anywhere that the ice is thick enough without leaving any gear.

    Given that even a "cheap" ice screw retails for $60 (plus another $6 or $8 for a biner, leaving a couple of dollars worth of cord behind is a financial no-brainer.

    I remember the first time I tried what was then (30 or so years ago) called an Abalakov V-thread. As I was making the holes I couldn't believe I was going to do something this crazy, but the instant I finished the knot in the cord, I realized it was much safer than any screw-and-single-biner setup.

    And, as a side note, Vitaly Abalakov was quite a climber. And inventor. His Abalakov cam was the inspiration for the first Lowe cams (can't remember what they were called), which, in turn, led to Friends.

    The guy revolutionized both rock and ice protection. The short version of his story is here.



  • @David-Harris Tri-Cams?



  • @toby said in Winter Climbing:

    Tri-Cams?

    Do you mean "was Tri-Cams the name of the Lowe cam?" If so, the answer is no. The thing Greg Lowe came up with was spring-loaded, but only had a single lobe (although a two-lobe version followed). I believe he called it the Cam-Nut, and it was definitely based on Abalakov's original idea. They were also called crack jumars.

    And I finally found a photo of some of Lowe's cam nuts:

    Lowe cam nuts.jpg



  • @David-Harris Cool. Think that's the first I've ever seen those rigs. Vintage gear, anyone?

    I think the Lowes were also the inventors of tri-cams. Passive. Yep. Indeed Greg was the man on these puppies as well!

    tricams.jpg

    Photo Credit: DarthLarwa - Own work, Public Domain



  • sloppy ice storm today so my wimpy crew bailed on work. Fine by me 🙂 After I had done the first plow job I hopped in red bessie and cruised over to one of my old haunts..
    Bouldered a nice 40m WI 4- slab
    IMG_8604.jpg
    then I rappeled down this really cool 30m WI3
    IMG_8605.jpg
    Checked out some cool stuff on that side.
    IMG_8607.jpg

    I actually bouldered that pillar on the left once.. I also fell off it once leading... Its trickier than it looks... being much smarter and more mature than I was a decade ago I climbed back up the grade 3 🙂 rappeled again... the rope gods were trying to trick me.
    IMG_8609.jpg
    I rappeled again and bouldered back up a 40m grade 3 gully called Scotch Gully. another rap and then back up the 40m slab . Hiked out ,drove home and plowed again.. this time in the dark... Not bad for a snow day. 150m of ice and a good hike.



  • Night soloing. like being in a cocoon. You have no grasp of how far off the deck you are or how far it is to the top. Very peaceful.
    IMG_8619.jpg



  • @NickG said in Winter Climbing:

    Night soloing. like being in a cocoon. You have no grasp of how far off the deck you are or how far it is to the top. Very peaceful.

    Interesting. Some people pay serious money for drugs that give them that sensation. I think your way of achieving it is much better. Probably a lot safer and cheaper, too.

    My winter night climbing has been in the arctic. It's pretty much like day-time climbing in terms of light, but you've been on the go for 18 hours and are looking at another six or eight before you get back down. Spacey, but in a different way.

    I'll try to find the negative and make a better scan, but here's an old black and white shot of topping out on one of the summits of Mt. Bredablik. Long day, and still over 4,000 feet to go to get back to camp.

    Summit of Bredablik.jpg



  • Super cool stuff. You should write some non fiction books about your adventures..



  • Got to the lake sat. Finally had a partner. isa is still all wrapped up in being a new mom. Did 20 Below Zero Gully with my friend Adam.
    IMG_8663.jpg
    IMG_8666.jpg
    took a shot of this Russian on Float Like A Butterfly Land Like A Tomato
    IMG_8673.jpg
    then I dropped my camera 60m.. It still kinda works 🙂



  • night soloing again last night.
    IMG_8704.jpg
    this shot illustrates a technique that can work well for steep ice. instead of placeing the tools left and right I like to simply go straight up with the next placement. Its a lot less work and you move upward more efficiently. Of course it depends on how the feet are. often you have to go back to the x for ballance but if the feet are decent you can sometimes hike a good section this way.



  • @NickG You can also use a sort of modified X, in which your tools aren't in a vertical line -- still a bit apart horizontally -- but also each placement well above the last. Ditto for feet.

    But yeah, depends on the ice.


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