Devil's Kitchen Headwall (DKH) - Left Variation
AI3 Steep Snow PG13
|711 page views|
Good page? (1 like)
|Type: ||Ice, Snow, Alpine, 4 pitches, 800 feet, Grade II|
|Consensus: ||AI3 [details]|
|FA: ||George and Fred Schwartz - 1900|
|Season: ||Late winter through spring|
|Submitted By: ||Ben Beckerich on Apr 19, 2012|
BETA PHOTO: Photo credit: Jason Brabec
Devil's Kitchen Headwall is the big rock wall stretching from Pearly Gates (top of Hogsback) east toward Steel Cliffs. Left variation, as I'm calling it here, is the long couloir that splits the middle of the headwall. The route is distinguishable by the fact that it runs the full height of the headwall, unlike the routes to the right (east).
Climb the snow/debris ramp at the bottom of the headwall to the mouth of the couloir, and proceed up steep snow to the first step. If it's not completely iced-over, this will be the crux of the route. If you don't see good ice above this first step, don't climb the route- it's not 'in.' Trust me... you don't want to climb when it's not 'in!'
The rest of the route is obvious from there- two more ice steps will challenge you as you work your way up the coulor. When you get to the rime funnel at the top, shoot out to the left (west) as soon as you can, unless you want to get stuck on a pretty hairy broken knife-edge ridge below the summit ridge. Once out of the rime funnel, you'll want to head straight up through the rock formations above you. This will spit you out on a shoulder that will take you to the eastern summit ridge, which leads straight up to the summit.
Sounds more complicated than it is... just make sure, if in doubt, you always chose "left."
When I climbed this (April 7, 2012), there was very little good protection. If the ice is thick, protection will be abundant and mostly unnecessary. Had I not been soloing, I probably would have used more nuts or pins than anything else.
|Photos of Devil's Kitchen Headwall (DKH) - Left Variation Slideshow
BETA PHOTO: Looking back down the first step
BETA PHOTO: Middle of the route
BETA PHOTO: Top of the couloir - Go left over a small ridge to...