Type: Trad, Ice, 130 ft, Grade II
FA: Alex Lowe, 1981
Page Views: 26,813 total · 161/month
Shared By: George Bell on Apr 13, 2005
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac

You & This Route


44 Opinions

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Description

This is the coolest looking ice climb in Colorado (in my opinion). It is a 120' free hanging icicle right of the Rigid Designator and used to form only once every 5 years or so until someone started hanging a rope down it. Now it forms more consistently, but it usually doesn't touch down until much later than the Designator, and even then can form poorly and fall down a few times before thickening.

I have seen this climb form as a pencil only 5' in diameter and one year it was thicker than the Designator. Consider carefully the stability of this climb before leading or toproping it. Fortunately it never sees any sun. It is not simple to scramble to the top of the Fang (although it is possible), one way to toprope it is to do so after leading the Designator. Before you throw your rope down, make sure there is nobody leading it!

The bottom is generally heavily cauliflowered and can be tricky. Up higher, it's generally straight forward vertical to overhanging ice. A cakewalk for mixed masters, bloody desperate for the rest of us! Rap/lower off using 2 ropes.

Eds. note, this climb has been known to completely fail with a climber on it. Beware!

Protection

Ice screws.

Toprope Protection

Good trees on top.

Photos

The Fang's front is in what I would guess is WI4+. It was a good time. Hey Rob, who is the bad Mo Fo again! Mar 10, 2004
Alan Searcy
Pine, Colorado
 
Alan Searcy   Pine, Colorado
 
Spankin Hard on 2-1, Half cauliflower and the other half insecure hollow column about 3 feet in diameter. The top requires a pull around a small roof that will suck the last bit of circulation from your pumped out arms. Definitely, a full value lead by anyone's criteria. Feb 17, 2005
Kevin Fox
parker
Kevin Fox   parker
It is touching, but the whole thing is hollow on the inside. A week maybe two and it'll be prime condition. Was in the amphitheatre on Saturday. Jan 28, 2008
The Fang is in the wildest condition I have ever seen it. It is likely 4+ or 5+ but very technical. Ice florets all the way up to "summit curtain". Yep, there is a curtain of ice hanging down instead of the standard steep pillar. There are several ways to climb it including "chimneying" up and right and pulling a small overhang or going left and pulling a larger more pumpy 5+ curtain.

Go now because it will not last long.

Posted March 15, 2008.

JP Mar 17, 2008
2nd ascent by Bill Weiss in '82. Leanest conditions that were still climbable with Zero's and Footfangs. Amazing lead. Jan 27, 2013
chris deulen
Castle Rock
chris deulen   Castle Rock
Where can I check conditions or recent pictures for this? Feb 2, 2018