Type: Mixed, Ice, Alpine, 900 ft (273 m), 5 pitches, Grade III
FA: E. Zale, B Collett, November 2009
Page Views: 7,209 total · 50/month
Shared By: Ben Collett on Nov 8, 2009
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Tyler KC

You & This Route

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This route climbs much better than it looks from a distance. In fact, it compares favorably to many of the classic routes in RMNP. It contains a considerable amount of pure ice climbing as well as plenty of properly mixed climbing.

The first hurdle in the gully is a short easy mixed section that exits into a snowy section of the gully.

Pitch two follows a nice section of grade 3 ice to a very narrow ribbon of ice in a corner. Getting established in the corner requires some delicacy. We belayed on a small ledge immediately after getting into the corner. The next pitch was easy but fun low angle ice and mixed terrain. Stop where the rope is no longer warranted. From this point, one can scramble another 250 feet or so to the start of the upper gully.

The upper gully seems sensibly climbed in two pitches. The first ending on a nice ledge to the right of the ice. The second is a short pitch ending at the top of the ice. From here, one can scramble to the top of the buttress.

To get off the route, head up and left to a col in the ridgeline. From here, one can drop down the other side of the ridge to the road and follow that back to Echo Lake.


This is the furthest left gully on the buttress above the first Chicago Lake. From Echo Lake, hike the Chicago Lake trail until at the first Chicago Lake. Walk across the valley to the gully.


Nuts, cams, 3-5 ice screws. We found pins particularly useful- especially knifeblades and small Lost Arrows.