Direct North Buttress
WI5 M4 PG13
Avg: 3 from 1 vote
|Type:||Mixed, Ice, 900 ft, 5 pitches, Grade IV|
|FA:||Craig Pope, Priti Wright, Jeff Wright, April 2016|
|Page Views:||519 total · 28/month|
|Shared By:||JeffWright on Aug 11, 2016|
|Admins:||Scott Coldiron, Jon Nelson, Micah Klesick, Nate Ball|
DescriptionThis route is an alternate start to Triple Couloirs or as a worthy alpine ice crag on its own (descending the first couloir as the FA party did). The route begins just left of the toe of Dragontail's North Buttress (immediately left of the original start gully of Gerber-Sink) and ends at the base of the Runnels on Triple Couloirs. It is approximately 5 full pitches over 3 prominent ice flow sections, but can be split into longer or shorter pitches.
P1 (60m, WI4): Start the belay as high as possible on steep snow just above and left of the original start of Gerber-Sink up a prominent gully . Follow the narrow line of protectable, thick ice generally trending up and right. This is a long, sustained pitch of WI4 with nearly 60m of quality ice. Belay on the right with rock pro at a short, steep snowfield just as the gully opens up on the left.
P2 (40-60m, WI4): Stay right, where the flow is WI4 right off the belay. The climbing eases up after about 30m to a 40m stretch of moderate snow. Belay anywhere in the moderate snow gully with rock pro.
P3 (20-40m, moderate snow): Move the belay to the base of the crux flow, just below and to the right, under the thin ice over slab
P4 (40-60m, WI5+ M4): This wandering pitch is the crux, a long 60m stretch of sustained, thin, vertical ice. Rope drag will likely stop you short of the upper snow, forcing an uncomfortable screw belay on thin ice unless you plan carefully. The pitch starts on the right, traversing left on thin ice over slab (difficult to protect) to a slightly-overhanging ice pillar with mixed moves. Above this section is slightly-more-protectable thin ice (10cm screws) over a slabby ramp that leads to an upper snow slope.
P5 (60m, moderate snow): Exit left to easily gain the first couloir of Triple Couloirs just at the base of the Runnels.
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