August, '05

 

 

Surf's Up on

Snowpatch Spire

 

 

     Our first trip to the Bugs turned out to be a magical convergence of great friends, a spectacular setting, and beautiful weather. This day was no different and we climbed another of the stunning formations that rose above our camp like giant teeth. Our chosen route was a 7-pitch, 5.9 on the backside called Surf's Up. The Atkinson/Piche guide did us well again and we were pleased with the quality of climbing. In fact, I thought the two pitches above Surf's Up Ledge were the most enjoyable that I climbed in our entire trip. Simply fantastic.

   

Snowpatch Spire as seen from the Applebee Dome Campground.

Paul heading to the Snowpatch-Bugaboo col in the background.

An interesting "ice bridge" across a lake near camp.

A group of six heading to the West Ridge of Pigeon Spire.

Lisa at the burgschrund near the top of the Bugaboo-Snowpatch col.

Paul near the saddle.

The views on the Upper Vowell Glacier are worth the relatively short hike from camp.

Paul with Pigeon Spire in the background.

We would climb its West Ridge (right skyline) later in the trip.

A closer look at the striking east face of Pigeon Spire.

Three new friends we met in camp heading for the Superdirect on Snowpatch Spire.

Looking up at Surf's Up.

Snowpatch Spires (with our route marked) as seen from Pigeon Spire.

Looking up pitch one.

Paul leaving the belay on the second pitch.

Paul on pitch two.

Pitch three?

Looking down pitch three?

Beginning the pitch that takes around to the south face.

Paul making his way around to the south face and onto the Surf's Up Ledge.

 

Lisa at the belay.

Starting the fantastic crack pitches above Surf's Up Ledge.

 

The climbing reminded me a lot of Lumpy Ridge.

Long flared crack systems on impeccable granite...   good stuff.

Looking down at Lisa and Paul on Surf's Up Ledge.

 

 

Higher on the pitch.

Is the Bugaboos fantastic or what?!?!

Lisa and Paul coming up at the same time.

A balancey move near the end of the pitch.

Paul coming up.

All smiles.

Off on yet another pitch of incredible crack climbing.

Paul and Lisa on the last pitch before we stated the ridge climbing to the summit.

You don't get this view at just any crag.

Lisa at the top of the last steep pitch.

Enjoying life.

Looking back down at the Kain Hut and the parking lot drainage.

Looking down at camp.

There is a fair bit of ridge climbing required to get the summit after topping out Surf's Up.

One of the gendarmes near the summit.

Lisa on top.

Bugaboo Spire as seen from the summit of Snowpatch. The Kain Route follows the ridge facing the camera and the right skyline is the NE Ridge.

Me and Lisa.

Paul and me.

Some poser.

Summit register fun.

Great times!

More traversing to get to the rappel route.

The first rappel from the top.

It would be hard to overstate the beauty of this place.

 

Wheee...

Paul rapping.

Lisa rapping.

Looking up at the final rap of the day.

The final rope pull is always a great feeling isn't it?

Scrambling back to the glacier and the trail to camp.

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