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5. Cascade Falls/Obsession Area
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Gremlins T 
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Pause for a Whisper T 
Sycho Icycho 

Pause for a Whisper 

WI3 PG13

Type:  Trad, Ice, 1 pitch, 125'
Original: WI3 PG13 [details]
FA: Shaun Parent and Paul Dedi - 1981
Season: Winter
Page Views: 275
Submitted By: James Schroeder on Dec 11, 2013

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If, a few weeks before my 22nd birthday, I had possessed a fully-formed amygdala, I would not know about the existence of this route. It is not a route that you would stop the car for in Orient Bay, but it is just around the corner and to the left of Tempest - which is a definite must tick on every trip.

The first sentence of Shaun Parent's description in North of Superior - Orient Bay - Ice Climber's Guide is perhaps a better indicator of the potential difficulty on this route than any letter or number grade:

"This interesting climb affords (frequently simultaneously) thick, thin, and no ice conditions."

Since another pre-amygdala friend and I had just finished soloing Tempest, and we were waiting for our post-amygdala friends to wrap up their roped ascent, we decided to "Go check that thing around the corner out." So, sans rope, we headed up into the unknown, on what looked "Not too much harder than Tempest."

Much to our chagrin the fat ice at the bottom turned into thin ice, and then no ice. I went left, my friend went right - he made the better choice. As I worked my way back right I was getting pumped, and things were starting to go wrong. When I attempted to pull up onto the ledge that my friend had attained, my arms went stupid and each swing was a bigger flail than the last - until finally one lucky flail stuck. I pulled onto the ledge, rested and de-pumped while my friend finished the upper section of the climb in a beautiful, ice-filled elevator shaft. Then I turned the Walkman up and followed behind. We met our friends at the top of Tempest and rapped their line.

It was not until later in the trip that we looked up the name of that climb...

Pause for a Whisper indeed.


Immediately climber's left of Tempest.


Screws, maybe some pins, a decent route description and preferably a fully-formed amygdala.


Jay Knower describes a trip up Pause for a Whisper.

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