Originally climbed by Tim Auger, Peter Arbic, and Reg Bunyan in 1987, Homage to the Spider follows a prominent system of corners on the north side of Mount Louis. The name is a testament to Walter Perren, whose nickname was the Spider of Zermatt for his climbing prowess. Unlike the Gmoser route and the Kain route, Homage to the Spider is relatively short with only six technical pitches. The pitches themselves are more sustained and in general Homage to the Spider offers more interesting climbing than what is found on the Gmoser and Kain routes.
This route is highly recommended.
From the scree below Mount Edith, cross the boulder field and follow a faint trail up to the base of the south face of Mount Louis. Anything you are not bringing up the climb should be left here as the descent does not go back to the base of the climb. Locate a trail that traverses below Mount Louis and follow it to the right. This trail traverses below the east ridge. At a fork, stay right for Homage to the Spider. The left fork is for the Kain route.
Follow this trail to a high point below and left of the route. Scramble up until you are approximately level with the base of the corner system, and then make an exposed traverse right across a gully to reach the base of the route. A belay bolt marks the start of the route.
P1: 35m, 5.9 Climb the corner through a tricky bulge to a bolted belay at a ledge.
P2: 50m, 5.9 Continue up the excellent corner to a bolted anchor at a ledge.
P3: 60m, 5.8 Climb straight up to a bolt belay. Alternatively continue up the corner which widens to a chimney.
The next two pitches climb the wall on the left via a left facing corner system
P4: 50m, 5.10a Climb down into a gully to the wall on the left. Climb the corner past an old anchor (optional belay - back up the very old bolts) and up through a crux section to a bolted anchor at a ledge.
P5: 55m, 5.9 Continue up the corner on the right past an optional belay and an awkward bulge to a bolted anchor in the "medieval alleyway".
P6: 20m, 5.6 Walk along the alleyway until it is possible to chimney up to its top. Belay at a large ledge
Either solo or simulclimb the ridge crest from here to the summit. There are some fourth class or easy fifth sections along here.
Gear and Beta
Bring a set of cams from BD 0.1 or 0.2 to BD 4. Doubles from 0.5 to 2 or 3 are recommended. The pitches are long and take a lot of gear so bring a number of extendable draws. Double ropes are recommended.
Though there are just 6 technical pitches, the approach is long and there is a long scrambling section at the top, as well as a somewhat lengthy descent. Leave early and bring a headlamp.
BETA PHOTO: Mount Louis with the line of Homage to the Spider ...
BETA PHOTO: Mt Louis topo
Mount Louis as seen from Cascade Mountain