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Vanquished (Powell Peak)

WI5 M5, Mixed, Ice, 1000 ft, 5 pitches, Grade IV,  Avg: 3.8 from 4 votes
FA: Michael Bearzi and Bill Myers, 1991
Colorado > CO Ice & Mixed > RMNP - Mixed/Ice > Glacier Gorge T… > Loch Vale & uphill

Description

Four or five pitches of excellent mixed climbing on thin slabs, steep faces, corners and chimneys. We climbed the route in spring as many guidebooks describe as the best season, however I've run into folks who say its better in the fall.

Pitch 1- Climb up thin ice on a low angle face. Belay at a large flake wrapped with webbing. WI5 M5 190ft

Pitch 2 – Climb easy mixed terrain then a large left facing corner of 85 deg. Ice. Belay in an alcove below a vertical chimney. WI4 M3 160ft

Pitch 3 – Climb a vertical chimney with thin ice on the left and good rock pro on the right. Traverse left under a chalkstone roof at the end of the pitch. WI5 M5 100ft

Pitch 4 – Climb up to and over an ice bulge which tops out onto low angle terrain. WI5 ?ft

Location

From the Glacier Gorge trailhead, hike to Sky Pond, i.e. the same approach as for the Petit Grepon. Due South of Sky Pond is a large buttress. If you're lucky, Vanquished will be there.

Protection

Standard mixed route for a thinly iced climb. Bring plenty of pins (I didn't bring enough) as many of the good cracks were choked with ice.

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

Spectacular tight runnel on Jennings/Cooper.
[Hide Photo] Spectacular tight runnel on Jennings/Cooper.
Anti-Christ on pitch three.
[Hide Photo] Anti-Christ on pitch three.
Vanquished butress with variation marked.
[Hide Photo] Vanquished butress with variation marked.
Looking down Pitch 2 of Jennings/Cooper.
[Hide Photo] Looking down Pitch 2 of Jennings/Cooper.
Looking up Pitch 2 of Jennings/Cooper.
[Hide Photo] Looking up Pitch 2 of Jennings/Cooper.
Vanquished Wall area of Powell Peak.
[Hide Photo] Vanquished Wall area of Powell Peak.
Vanquished wall. October conditions.
[Hide Photo] Vanquished wall. October conditions.
Chris Thompson following the third pitch of Vanquished on 6-11-05.  Photo by Chris Sheridan.
[Hide Photo] Chris Thompson following the third pitch of Vanquished on 6-11-05. Photo by Chris Sheridan.
Descending Vanquished.
[Hide Photo] Descending Vanquished.

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

Eli Helmuth
Ciales, PR
[Hide Comment] Having just skied off the divide nearby Vanquished this morning and having spent the last couple of weeks in RMNP above treeline, it seems very unlikely that there is a shred of ice on the Vanquished Wall. Potentially with this warm spell, some new moisture, and a cold front?, things could come into shape up there. Otherwise, it is pretty dry and cold up high, not ideal for ice formation. Mar 16, 2007
Greg Sievers
Bozeman, MT
[Hide Comment] For those ice/mixed junkies, I invite you to look at The Inquisition route on this wall also. You may enjoy it, as well as a number of FA options in this area. Git-r-dun. Apr 8, 2008
[Hide Comment] Jack Roberts led a long variation to the first pitch of Vanquished on June 9, 2008. It's the big left-facing corner/chimney just left of the normal start. Moderately difficult mixed ground leads to a poorly protected thin-ice step, followed by strenuous liebacking with hands on rock and feet on thin ice, followed by a weird and insecure groove. The pitch arcs back to the right after the chimney and ends at a fixed anchor on Vanquished, about 120 feet off the ground. Very difficult to rate. Jack said it was "like an awkward 5.9 crack that doesn't let up." This MIGHT be a good alternative to Vanquished's ephemeral first pitch when that's not in. Then again, it might not.

Note: Topher Donahue has informed me that he led this pitch "about 10 years ago."

Vanquished was in good shape over the weekend and yesterday, but today's heat might have killed a few key sections. In addition, we (I) destroyed most of the ice at the hard bulge atop the fourth pitch, and I doubt it will rebuild this year. Sorry!

Gear note: Hexes are very useful on Vanquished's icy cracks, including a large hex (10 or 11 BD) and several medium sizes.

See photos at themountainworld.blogspot.com. Jun 10, 2008
[Hide Comment] Kevin Cooper and I climbed a possible new variation to the first two pitches of this on 5/25/10. Our route was to the right and climbed two excellent pitches of WI5 M5 before ending below a splitter crack with a pin in it's base. We discussed continuing up the crack but opted to stay on ice and used the pin to pendulum into the money pitches of Vanquished. A few photos were added. May 28, 2010
Kevin Landolt
Fort Collins, Wyoming
 
[Hide Comment] What an incredible route! Jul 29, 2010