Allan joined me this past weekend to get some vertical ice climbing under his belt. Allan has climbed all over North and South America already, and will join us on our Cordillera Blanca trip in the heart of Peru. Artesonraju is a 6000 meter peak comprised of very continuous 50 to 65 degree snow and ice climbing.
check out this program at http://www.swaguides.com/trips_courses/expeditions/peru/artesonraju.shtml
On Saturday Allan and I climbed in the schoolroom. He picked up a perfect swing and great footwork immediately. We made a couple v-threads and placed multiple ice screws. Allan was absolutely shocked as to how strong both v-threads and screws can be. By the end of the day, Allan had climbed around 800 feet of ice. Nice work.
The next day we started out of ‘The Schoolroom Pillar.’ This is the steepest piece of ice in the Schoolroom. No problem.
We then moved North into the Alcove Area and climbed another 5 pitches here ranging over 120 feet long.
Our afternoon was spent working on skills ranging from knots and hitches to glacier travel to companion crevasse rescue. Once we had out climbed our area and were happy with progress, Allan climbed one last route from the canyon floor to the rim. Around 150 feet. 1300 feet total over both days.
At the end of the day, we swung by The Black Canyon of the Gunnison to see the “big ditch” in the winter time. Allan had never been there before and it was a great added bonus to his trip to Southwestern Colorado. Hopefully he will join us for some world class rock climbing there this summer! All in all, the weekend perfected Allan’s ice climbing ability and I know he will be successful in Peru this summer.