Trip Report
Great White North - Angel's Crest full conditions ascent.
Wednesday November 14, 2012 2:54am
Credit: Fish Boy
Fishboy Photo

Angel’s Crest full conditions ascent

Per ardua ad astra!

November 11, 2012

It all started with a little conversation on “Squamish Photos and Stories”.



Fish Boy
Social climber
Squeamish Nov 8, 2012 - 07:42pm PT

Mike, we should do an Angels Crest in the rain mission, can't let Luke have all the fun!




Big Mike
Trad climber
BC Topic Author's Reply - Nov 8, 2012 - 07:53pm PT

let's do it sunday dude!!!




Mighty Hiker
climber
Vancouver, B.C. Nov 8, 2012 - 09:25pm PT

Sunday may be invalid - it's supposed to be decent weather.





Ghost
climber
A long way from where I started Nov 8, 2012 - 09:35pm PT

Mike, we should do an Angels Crest in the rain mission,


If I hadn't lived there for twenty years, I'd think you guys were sick.

But I understand.

After it's been raining forever, and you know that all there will be in the future is more rain, you can enter a separate reality. I can remember climbing Grandaddy overhang one winter "because it's an overhang, man. It'll be dry."

Yeah, right. Sort of. It took me over an hour to nail the second pitch in a sleet storm while Steve hung in a waterfall.

We were magnificently stupid, and it is gratifying to see that the tradition continues.



Big Mike
Trad climber
BC Topic Author's Reply - Nov 8, 2012 - 10:04pm PT

Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.

Nov 8, 2012 - 09:25pm PT

Sunday may be invalid - it's supposed to be decent weather.

Hence the joke sir! ;) it will be plenty wet in spots I'm sure which should provide a nice challenge.. Hopefully it won't be too busy either... ;)






RyanD
climber
Squamish Nov 8, 2012 - 10:40pm PT

We were magnificently stupid, and it is gratifying to see that the tradition continues.

Hehehehe this is one of the best sentences I've read on this thread in some time.


Edit-

yes he's calling u rain climbers stupid, but only based on his past stupidity so u can't hold it against him. Beautiful.





Big Mike
Trad climber
BC Topic Author's Reply - Nov 9, 2012 - 05:59pm PT

Lol! I guess when you really want to climb, you just go. Something tells me testing the limits has something to do with it too.

Hey Ryand I heard you got out with Kieran the other day??




Bruce Kay
Gym climber
BC Nov 9, 2012 - 06:05pm PT

We were magnificently stupid, and it is gratifying to see that the tradition continues.


The art of alpinism distilled into one sentence.

typical.


bloody editors.



Big Mike
Trad climber
BC Topic Author's Reply - Nov 9, 2012 - 06:53pm PT

classic special k...







Bruce Kay
Gym climber
BC Nov 9, 2012 - 07:22pm PT

I'm just repeating what has been handed down to us, and Dave is passing the torch to you maniacs.

"Conquistadors of the Useless" - Lionel Terray

"Witlessly bold, Heroically Dull" - Tobin sorenson



RyanD
climber
Squamish Nov 9, 2012 - 07:24pm PT

I don't know why everyone is opting to aid, rain & consider even ice climbing. Had 3 days of climbing dry Squamish stone in the beautiful sun this week. Mike, yep me & Kieran had a good time yesterday for sure, he's psyched, I like it. Hopefully we'll get out again soon so long as light Luke doesn't give him AID tonight.



Big Mike
Trad climber
BC Topic Author's Reply - Nov 9, 2012 - 07:39pm PT

light Luke
lol.. I been stuck at work... looks nice this weekend!






Fish Boy
Social climber
Squeamish Nov 10, 2012 - 08:42am PT

Forecast says snow mixed with rain for Sunday arvo, we should aim for that Mike if I can escape my 1 month old future climber....





Big Mike
Trad climber
BC Topic Author's Reply - Nov 10, 2012 - 08:47am PT

Sounds good?? ;)




Bruce Kay
Gym climber
BC Nov 10, 2012 - 08:58am PT

Sunday sounds perfect for Angels Crest! No I'm not kidding - winter alpinism kicks total ass!

The first time I met Perry I was with Peter and Tami wandering around looking for ice. Peter said "Hey Perry's up on the Grand - lets go yell at him!"

Thats right - yell. This was before the Intardnet and confusers.

Anyway up we went to the base and there he was way up there gunning for the Flats. Everything was quite wintery with wild waves of spindrift flowing down the slabs. All our yelling must have eroded his resolve somewhat as a few hours later he was on the ground and we headed back to his dive on No Name Rd for a tea or something.

Him way up there all by his lonesome in the thick of winter is something i'll never forget. If you really want to go wild around here winter is the best bet .



Big Mike
Trad climber
BC Topic Author's Reply - Nov 10, 2012 - 09:50am PT

But Bruce, I'm skeeerd!! :) sounds adventurous that's for sure :)


So the plan was set. I was really hoping the snow and ice wouldn’t be that bad as we were only taking rock gear. It started out great, It was a cold crisp fall day, but dry.

Fishboy, are we really doing this??




Caution!!!



So we headed up the trail. We didn’t get started till at least 11 which was my fault entirely, but we had headlamps and cold weather gear and were pretty much ready for anything. The trail was surprisingly dry which boosted my spirts, and Nick and I made short work of it with one brief stop for me to de-layer.

Me near the start of the route
Credit: Fish Boy
Fishboy Photo

When we got to the base of the route, I tried to solo up the tree with my gloves on but it just didn’t feel very secure so I backed down. Nick says, “The crux is at the bottom mate.” So I took off my gloves and managed to crank onto the first branch. I felt fairly secure going up it but damn those branches are slippery and polished.. I swear they are worse when it’s cold too. Nick commented “That tree gets harder every time I solo it!” ;)

oh yeah did I mention it was my first time soloing that tree?? Scary as f**k…
We roped up at the base of Angel Crack and I gave Nick the lead since I knew he would fire the pitch faster than me.




He did it in style, and linked the crux pitch 10b as well. I climbed it pretty smooth and was genuinely enjoying the experience of being there this late in the year. There were tiny snowflakes in the air by that point but it wasn’t sticking, and I wasn’t really worried it would get too crazy…..

Nick took this selfie at the belay.

Credit: Fish Boy


I racked up quickly and before I left Nick said “You can just keep climbing if you want, I don’t mind simuling a bit.” So I did, and I linked the next three pitches which was awesome. The 10a was especially cool since the tree that everyone used to grab seems to have disappeared at the top and I actually did the move this time. I brought us up to the base of the next 10a and when Nick got there he told me that he was halfway up the 10a corner in the middle of my lead by the time I put him on... :)

We stopped for a moment to take these pics,










Then Nick set off again. I got this one from the belay.



If you look closely at the last photo you will see ice dribbles just above and to the right of where Nick is in the photo. This was the first ice crux. The dribbles are actually more of a smear up higher exactly where you want to put your foot and rock over. Nick took a little whip on the ice and then said “ I think this just turned into an anything goes ascent”.

He pulled on the cam and managed to free the rest of the pitch despite it’s somewhat icy condition. By the time I was headed up the pitch there was snow in all the cracks and the gear was lightly dusted as well. It felt somewhat surreal to be up there in a storm like that…

This is what it looked like when I got up to Nick’s belay..

Credit: Fish Boy
Fishboy Photo




He asked me if I was ok to continue, and I looked at our one 70m rope and replied well we don’t really have much of a choice at this point, but he said “we could still get off this thing”. I knew we could but also knew it would suck just as bad as continuing so I told him I was fine, and “Let’s get up this thing!”.

We ran up to the base of the 5.9 which I was expecting to be the crux of the route, because it’s typically wet so I expected it to be fairly icy. I wasn’t wrong…



It should have been my lead, but I told Nick “Your idea, your lead”. We laughed a little and Nick headed up the pitch. He yanked on some gear to get through the ice crux, when he got up to the ledge and had a look around the corner he said “This whole damn corner is iced over!”… Then he starts breaking up the ice and tossing huge chunks of it away from my belay calling “ICE!” Funniest damn thing I’ve ever seen on a rock climb! ;)

He managed to get through it but pulled on a couple pieces, and this is what I saw when I made it around the corner.



The next scramble was interesting because everything was covered in snow and the route finding wasn’t straightforward by any means, but instinct kicked in and I ran up it to the base of the Acrophobes.

Me at the Lower Acrophobe Tower
Credit: Fish Boy
Fishboy photo

Nick offered me the lead again and I turned him down reasoning that he would be faster leading this snowy nightmarish slab since he had been there recently and is a kick ass climber. Priority at this point was GET THE FVCK OFF THIS ROCK!!!!

Nick setting off on the Lower Acrophobe Tower.



He managed to make it look fairly easy, but he was digging out practically every placement and it definitely took longer under these conditions. He managed to do it clean though, and every time he would call “Mike Safe!” for the rest of the climb, I would sigh a little breath of relief.


I somehow managed to follow cleanly and by the time I reached the gear it was covered in snow. I had to brush it all off to take it out, and try and brush off footholds as I went so I wouldn’t slip in my mythos. The Knife edge ridge was interesting, because it was the first time that I had ever butt slid across the thing and I was worried that I would rip my pants. ;)

Fish boy lowered me off the tower and I took this photo while he rapped.

Looking across from behind the Lower Acrophobe Tower


He told me to take off while he pulled the rope, so I did and ran over the notch and had him lower me off the anchor at the top. I tried to tell him I was going to climb up the other side to the second tree but he couldn’t hear me and I couldn’t really hear him so I was at the first tree when he called “OFF BELAY!” lucky I was because I anchored myself to it and said, OK!

I took in the slack and Nick says stop I’m not even attached to the rope!! I’m like wtf? He solos up the notch and tries to pull the rope up but of course, it gets stuck in the crack…. No Biggee, he goes to save it and when he gets back I get him to throw me on belay so I can get to the next tree.

I got Nick to stop on his way up for this one


We racked up and Nick took off again, up the next corner, there was a bit of ice on it, but not too bad and he made his way up it fairly quickly. I managed to free it and actually found it easier than any other ascent I’d made up the crest. It was pretty snowy but the jams were still good and the gear was pretty much buried again.

When I arrived at the belay Nick asked again if I would like to lead. At this point I knew that would mean he would have to stand there for another full pitch. I knew that wouldn’t be a good move. I didn’t want either one of us to get unnecessarily cold, and we had a good rhythm going despite the conditions.

Well maybe the fact that the next 5.8 pitch would actually be the crux pitch of the route and I wasn’t even sure if we could get up it might have been a factor too… we know there is a variation as well but neither of us have climbed it so we went with the devil we knew.

Nick starting up the Whaleback arête pitch


The fist crack actually went pretty well for Nick besides the fact we didn’t bring much big gear. He looked secure and made pretty good time, considering the conditions. However, it was a different story when he got up to the arête. A snowy slab with no protection until after the crux 5.5 move which was rendered much harder and insecure as a result of the conditions. I couldn’t see what was happening but he wasn’t very happy getting started on it and once he disappeared the rope was barely moving.
I was pretty much praying at that point that he wouldn’t fall and looking at the rope in my belay intently for any movement. Finally there was some, and then more, and then a lot as he ran to the belay. When he called safe I instantly felt better about our prospects of getting off the Chief that night.


Nick bought me up and somehow I managed to free it again, literally digging the gear out of the crack this time. The spindrift was incredible and it was blowing snow in all directions and coating almost everything.

When I got to the Whale Back crux and saw what he had done, I laughed and followed his path to the left, some grassy foot holds to a shitty horn that was somehow still slung when I got there, then up the slippery crux to the arete where he finally got a half decent cam in. What a joke!… I looked at him and said “What are we doing here??”

We laughed and he pulled out a thermos with chai tea in it and handed me a cup.
This time there was no discussion about who was leading. Nick said, “Gimme the gear I gotta get out of here”. He racked up and I had another cup of tea. I was glad that I had made the choice last pitch to continue our flow, because if he was cold now, imagine if I had led that pitch!

He started up the 10a headwall and slipped a little trying to get in the grove but landed on the tree that was conveniently right there and he seemed unharmed. Next time he yanked his way up on the piton and got himself established on the crack.

It was pretty dark by that point and I was huddled around the corner to stay out of the weather on the exposed ridge, so I didn’t see much but the rope would stop then pull a bunch of slack then run for a bit, repeat, ad nauseum. Afterword, he told me he was jugging cams a bit. It took him awhile but at this point, I was just happy the rope was going up.

After what seemed like an eternity he finally called safe, and I was relieved because my feet were getting so cold. I had big thick ski socks on with my rock shoes and it was actually quite warm all day but I guess standing there on the cold snowy Whaleback arête had chilled them out pretty good. More than one pair of liner gloves would have been an excellent idea also.

I started up the next pitch off the tree and nearly slipped on the tree itself just getting established in the crack. Conditions weren’t exactly primo for freeclimbing in rock shoes… I got myself in there and nearly got my feet in the jams when I slipped doing some weird knee flag move because there was snow on all the foot holds.

As I fell, the rope stretched a wee bit (coulda been the Doritos I ate) and pulled fish boy off his stance due to his loosely-constructed anchor. He was hiding from the weather behind the wall all nice and comfy and when I fell I pulled him out into the blistering wind and snow.

Then I tried the move again and succumbed to my weakness calling for a take. I hung there almost 2000 feet off the ground, in the dark, exhausted and battered by a raging storm. The crack in front of me was buried in snow and the gear was gone. The headwall was a salt and pepper concoction of some sort and it was all quite the sensory experience to say the least.

Meanwhile Nick’s swearing at me at the belay because he’s still freezing in the wind... So I get off my a$$ and pulled on the gear to get myself established on the crack. The rest of the pitch went clean except a few more takes because I was exhausted at this point.

Nick was stoked when I got to the belay because it meant he could hide from the weather again.. HAHAHAHA.

This was the first decent ledge in a while, but we weren’t wasting any time getting off this thing. Nick grabbed the gear and ducked into the tunnel to the squeeze chimney. He managed to make his way across the snowy ledge fairly easily and was trying to get established in the squeeze chimney, when he dropped his knee into the crack below it and got it stuck.

He says to me “Mike my knee is stuck man and I can’t get it out!”, “Every time I move it, it goes deeper!”. “Just relax”, I said, “You got it in there, you can get it out.”

He tried for a bit and then he says “No I can’t!”, “You gotta come help me!!”. “Ok, well how are we going to do that?” I said. “Are you going to build a gear belay there and bring me over?” “You gotta come help me!!!” he says and then pop, it came out. “I got it out!” Nick says. “Thank God!” I said, “I was worried if we couldn’t get it out we might have to call for a rescue!!! Wouldn’t that be the ultimate irony….

Nick made his way up the rest of the pitch with much less difficulty than how it had started, but still took him some time. The rope felt like it barely moved for an eternity and then all of a sudden it started moving faster and faster. When he topped out and yelled “Safe!” I screamed at him and he screamed back! We were both pretty damn stoked! We were almost up there!!

He put me on belay and said “Don’t get your knee stuck!”……. When I made my way across the sloping ledge of the tunnel, I realized that I had never noticed how sloped it was until it was covered in snow… I managed to get into the chimney without risking getting my knee stuck but bailed trying to get established.

I tried again and managed to get established this time and made some progress before I called for another take. I hung there for a bit and Nick said “Come on mate! You can do it!” I summoned the last of my energy and sent the rest of the pitch.

When I crawled out of the slot, Nick says to me, “I honestly never thought it would get this bad!”. “I knew it could” I said, “I was hoping it wouldn’t.” He laughed and said “Why did you agree to come up here with me then!?!?”. “It’s 2012 buddy! Time to get sh#t done. No time to waste!” He laughed and gave me some tea, which I happily drank.

Then I took these crappy summit shots.









I posted a quick summit post to my thread, and we ran across the snowy blank vista of granite. It was quite surreal to see it covered in snow like that, like a moonscape of some sort. Fish boy found the trail despite the snow cover and we made our way off the top and down into the forest. The chains and ladders were quite nice to have under those conditions.

We stopped when we got into the gully for a quick rest and safety discussion. When we were fully rested we made our way down the trail. It went quickly as we chatted happily about life and I only got a chance to bug Nick about not leaving a car in the Chief parking lot a couple times.

We made it back to the rigs eventually and were better off for the walk. I told Nick that our ascent would be invalidated if we didn’t go to the pub for a couple beers. He agreed and we met up at the Brewpub for Burgers and Beers!


Thanks to Nick for getting my butt off that rock! I know that if it came down to it I could have done it, but he stepped up to the plate and got us up there!!








  Trip Report Views: 3,581
Big Mike
About the Author
Big Mike is a trad climber from BC, who needs crampons and ice tools for this shite!!

Comments
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Comment on this Trip Report
bmacd

Trad climber
100% Canadian
  Nov 14, 2012 - 03:05am PT
Epic
bergbryce

climber
East Bay, CA
  Nov 14, 2012 - 03:09am PT
Nice TR.
Looks way exciting, especially that icy corner.
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 14, 2012 - 03:35am PT
Thanks guys. I wish I had a picture of the real crux, the Whaleback arete. It was the scariest part!
Sierra Ledge Rat

Mountain climber
Old and Broken Down in Appalachia
  Nov 14, 2012 - 07:50am PT
Only in Canada... Psychos... Doesn't look like you were dressed for the conditions...

I salute you, ye hard men!!!!!
Norwegian

Trad climber
dancin on the tip of god's middle finger
  Nov 14, 2012 - 08:06am PT
i was trying in vein
to sarcastically interject
a ludicrous comment
implying light duty;
but i just couldn't.

i commend you and partners
unlikely dream, and
your's courageous execution
of the ridiculous.
Roxy

Trad climber
CA Central Coast
  Nov 14, 2012 - 09:55am PT
What an epic outing!
Blakey

Trad climber
Sierra Vista
  Nov 14, 2012 - 10:20am PT
Great skills :-O

Steve
TheSoloClimber

Trad climber
Vancouver
  Nov 14, 2012 - 10:21am PT
Well, looks like we no longer have a reason to get after ya for being light! Way to persevere where we could not ;)
khanom

Trad climber
Greeley Hill
  Nov 14, 2012 - 10:27am PT
Nuts! Absolutely nuts!
Ghost

climber
A long way from where I started
  Nov 14, 2012 - 10:32am PT
Welcome to the club.

The Magnificently Stupid Club.
RyanD

climber
Squamish
  Nov 14, 2012 - 05:14pm PT
Big hard Mike & sharkboy sending subalpine ridges in a push in full conditions. Nice work! Norwegian & Ghost comments nail it.

Edit- not shark boy- shark man
MH2

climber
  Nov 14, 2012 - 11:00am PT
The "summit" shots set back climbing photography about 150 years, but the one of Nick coming up just past the Acrophobes looks like a store window Christmas display. Angel's Crest for sure. Hard to imagine the Whaleback slab like that in rock shoes.
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
  Nov 14, 2012 - 11:03am PT
Awesome! Way to get after it!
thekidcormier

Gym climber
squamish, b.c.
  Nov 14, 2012 - 11:08am PT
Good thing fishboy didn't say to you what you said to Aislinn in the valley " I don't want tot lead all the pitches"
this just in

climber
north fork
  Nov 14, 2012 - 11:24am PT
Awesome, one trip you'll never forget. Thanks for the TR.
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
  Nov 14, 2012 - 11:59am PT
I'm still not sure it was truly legit. Too modern. Its totally lame without a forced bivy and being 24 hours late for work and you could have played Epic alpine Rescue on your I fone and blah blah....





oh....... The photo's hadn't loaded properly at first..... uh well maybe it was pretty damn legit after all ... holy man - you guys must have been so psyched topping out!

Wayno

Big Wall climber
Seattle, WA
  Nov 14, 2012 - 12:18pm PT
Another proud member of the "Me so cold and dumb club". I joined in 1982 with a winter ascent of The Trip. If you want to be lifetime member you have to bivi in that shite.
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 14, 2012 - 12:19pm PT


Thanks everyone! Ya I could have been a little better prepared. Definitely a learning experience.






thekidcormier

Gym climber
squamish, b.c.

Nov 14, 2012 - 08:08am PT
Good thing fishboy didn't say to you what you said to Aislinn in the valley " I don't want tot lead all the pitches"

Ya. Those pesky details... Guess I shoulda left them out and just posted pics. It's way easier to look good and avoid criticism that way.........
Tami

Social climber
Canada
  Nov 14, 2012 - 12:35pm PT
Heheheeeee.............. I remember doing a November ascent of Angels Crest a few decades ago. A few chaps had gone around the backside and set up a high-line-slash-swing I think....one of the first times that thing was set up in the gully .

It was a spur of the moment idea to get on the AC but at least we didn't have the conditions you had. The thing we did lack was any food or water so at the top, I drank liberally of the whisky offered by the high-line fellas.

The crux for me was the epic journey down the backside trail with nothing in my gut but about 2oz of whisky.............

GREAT TR !!!!!
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
  Nov 14, 2012 - 12:45pm PT
Bravo!

The thing must have been M4 at least. Hard without tools, and tree branches make poor substitutes.

The forest below and around the Acrophobes is OK for fires. Don't ask how I know.

Excellent work, men! BURT BRONSON would be impressed, except maybe for your 'alpine' start.
Mikemcee

Social climber
Mill Valley, CA
  Nov 14, 2012 - 12:55pm PT
This ALMOST tops going back to Cali...you guys rock.
nutjob

Sport climber
Almost to Hollywood, Baby!
  Nov 14, 2012 - 01:28pm PT
You guys are awesome!

Great collection of burly pics, and especially love the horizontal blowing snow on the summit!

Those ice-covered slabs and corners in rubber climbing shoes are no joke.
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 14, 2012 - 01:41pm PT

Nov 14, 2012 - 05:06am PT
i was trying in vein
to sarcastically interject
a ludicrous comment
implying light duty;
but i just couldn't.

i commend you and partners
unlikely dream, and
your's courageous execution
of the ridiculous.

Weege I love this.. Thanks!!
thekidcormier

Gym climber
squamish, b.c.
  Nov 14, 2012 - 03:52pm PT
...and all this time I thought Bigmike and Fishboy were softcock welterweight wankers too light for a solid adventure..

Bump for a badass ascent!

Upon analysing the 'deets' I conclude Mike is still a welterweight, just with a broader outlook of 'climbing weather'.





Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 14, 2012 - 03:59pm PT
That's pretty funny dude, considering all the things i could drop about you.... :)
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
  Nov 14, 2012 - 04:16pm PT
Daryl had it right- everyone was light, including those he admired the most!

Here is one my favorite Full Conditions trips - Angels landing, about this time of year with a bunch 5-8 year olds. It would have been just another vague memory of another hike but No ... It had to start dumping as soon as we got to the summit! If some smart guy hadn't decided to bring a couple of cordalettes along it would have been pretty epic!

the upper left picture is like bellygood with a chain to hang onto.  I...
the upper left picture is like bellygood with a chain to hang onto. I bet there's been a few whoopsies there!
Credit: Bruce Kay

Lets see a few more full conditions stories and pics

pvalchev

Social climber
Truckee, CA
  Nov 14, 2012 - 05:55pm PT
This is awesome!!!
Ghost

climber
A long way from where I started
  Nov 14, 2012 - 06:22pm PT
Oplopanax

Mountain climber
The Deep Woods
  Nov 14, 2012 - 08:45pm PT
You boys demonstrated great skill in suffering. You are ready for mixed climbing.

Stewart Johnson

climber
lake forest
  Nov 14, 2012 - 09:32pm PT
top notch.
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
  Nov 14, 2012 - 09:39pm PT
good place to take a dump ghost!
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 14, 2012 - 09:52pm PT
What's the deal with that dump ghost!! ???

Thanks to everyone for their comments.




Oplopanax

Mountain climber
The Deep Woods

Nov 14, 2012 - 05:45pm PT
You boys demonstrated great skill in suffering. You are ready for mixed climbing.


Maybe I am.... Heck with the right gear I bet it would even be fun!! ;)
MH2

climber
  Nov 14, 2012 - 10:07pm PT

Lets see a few more full conditions stories and pics

Here is the true face of full conditions. We had just moved to Toronto. I got us lost on the way home from school. We lived through it.


thekidcormier

Gym climber
squamish, b.c.
  Nov 14, 2012 - 10:12pm PT
That's pretty funny dude, considering all the things i could drop about you.... :)

Publicizing that kind of dirt would be worthy of a thread of its own!

Zander

climber
  Nov 14, 2012 - 11:10pm PT
Awesome adventure!
Z
Ghost

climber
A long way from where I started
  Nov 14, 2012 - 11:40pm PT
The next time you guys show up in Seattle, you get this...

A stout beer for a pair of stout lads.
A stout beer for a pair of stout lads.
Credit: Ghost

Maybe I am.... Heck with the right gear I bet it would even be fun!! ;

No, it won't be fun. But then, it don't have to be fun, to be fun.
Spanky

Social climber
boulder co
  Nov 14, 2012 - 11:27pm PT
That's awesome. I did that route years ago and though it was challenging when it was dry. proud!
RyanD

climber
Squamish
  Nov 14, 2012 - 11:45pm PT
Yea Big Mike, good to see u supertoproping in public today. Sorry I didn't stick around to chat but I saw my window to bail & took it! My boss was pissed I didn't tell him I was running away but i couldnt take any more spirit propaganda lol! You grind out the whole thing or did u flee??
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 15, 2012 - 12:06pm PT
Hey bud, nope I saw the trend of people fleeing and followed suit. Had to go back to work and make some money! ;)
Todd Eastman

climber
Bellingham, WA
  Nov 15, 2012 - 12:40pm PT
Best TR of the year!
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
  Nov 15, 2012 - 12:46pm PT


getting cloudy.... but we'll piss up it
getting cloudy.... but we'll piss up it
Credit: Bruce Kay

what?  what harm could a few little snow flakes do? <br/>
.....in a gutter?
what? what harm could a few little snow flakes do?
.....in a gutter?
Credit: Bruce Kay

uh oh....
uh oh....
Credit: Bruce Kay
portent

Social climber
your mom's house
  Nov 15, 2012 - 12:51pm PT
Great TR Big Mike!!!

Way to get up there!!!
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 15, 2012 - 01:12pm PT
Thanks guys!

Thanks for the Mouse's tooth shots Bruce!
cultureshock

Trad climber
Mountain View
  Nov 15, 2012 - 01:40pm PT
Good work dudes. That sounds EPIC and way too cold!
JSmith

climber
Squamish
  Nov 15, 2012 - 08:36pm PT
Meanwhile, on the same day at the top of the North Gully...
Fish Boy

Social climber
Squeamish
  Nov 15, 2012 - 10:23pm PT
Nice TR Mike!

It wasn't an epic at all, but we left little margin for error and were given a full value adventure.

I have never before climbed a don't fall section like what was on the Whaleback that day.

Cheers
Ghost

climber
A long way from where I started
  Nov 15, 2012 - 11:41pm PT
I have never before climbed a don't fall section like what was on the Whaleback that day.

Alters your view of what climbing really is, doesn't it?
RyanD

climber
Squamish
  Nov 16, 2012 - 12:07am PT
Out of the shadows comes Jeremy with a nice video! Looks like it was blowing pretty good for you guys up on the line that day, nice work!
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 16, 2012 - 01:20am PT
mh2-
Nov 14, 2012 - 08:00am PT
The "summit" shots set back climbing photography about 150 years, but the one of Nick coming up just past the Acrophobes looks like a store window Christmas display. Angel's Crest for sure. Hard to imagine the Whaleback slab like that in rock shoes.

Ya I know the summit shots sucked... But they showed the conditions pretty well which is why I had to use them. I saw the shot you mentioned from my belay and had to ask Nick to stop for a moment because I knew I had to capture it. Thanks to Nick for his awesome photo contributions as well!

Jeremy I saw your slackline when I was belaying Nick on the last pitch. Nice work. Funny thing is I thought I'd heard voices when we were on the Acrophobes but I shook it off thinking no one else is crazy enough to be up here right now! :) we saw your footprints at the top too!


I have never before climbed a don't fall section like what was on the Whaleback that day.


I was praying you wouldn't fall! and I don't usually do that...
harryhotdog

Social climber
north vancouver, B.C.
  Nov 16, 2012 - 02:53am PT
After the amazing tr from cali a spur of the moment getur done attitude brings us another fantastic adventure captured in photo and word.An exciting read and you got Bruce to post some pics too. Right on Big Mike,can't wait for your next one! More photos from both Bruces please.
Credit: harryhotdog
This was our little love gully we holed up in for the night after getting caught in a storm near the summit of Mt.Cerberus.
Credit: harryhotdog
How amazing the sun and the calm weather feel after freezing your butt off all night and almost getting blown off the mountain.
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 16, 2012 - 01:39am PT
Thanks Harry.

More photos from both Bruces please.
+10000000!!!!
Andrew Barnes

Ice climber
Albany, NY
  Nov 16, 2012 - 02:01am PT
Wow, great climb and great trip report. Climbing cold and wet rock is much scarier than ice-climbing. With ice-climbing, most people put on their full winter regalia, including down jackets for belaying etc. etc. This is way more hardcore.
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
North wet, and Da souf
  Nov 16, 2012 - 03:02pm PT
Y'alls crazy, F'ing classic
Thanks!!!!
Jebus H Bomz

climber
Peavine Basecamp
  Nov 16, 2012 - 04:42pm PT
Cool! I mean, cold! I mean, what's yer problem???
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
  Nov 18, 2012 - 08:12pm PT
More photos


Well I'm running out, at least those to do with squamish somehow. This made me think of you mike. Next time, instead of chalk bag and rock shoes, try.........



LANG SKI BOOTS!

Winter on the Squaw
Winter on the Squaw
Credit: Bruce Kay

look closely at whats on his feet.  right about here Marc says "You ar...
look closely at whats on his feet. right about here Marc says "You are a sick, sick puppy Charlie Brown!"
Credit: Bruce Kay

As usual, while trolling for unsuspecting victims required for winter projects, one has to "bend the truth" a bit as to what is required to enable my twisted desires. In this case a lack of appropriate foot wear was no cause for concern as "Ski boots work fine for ice - no problem!" I of course failed to mention that it wasn't exactly ice climbing and possible isn't the same as adequate, let alone appropriate. No matter, by the time these realities had sunk in it was far too late.
JEleazarian

Trad climber
Fresno CA
  Nov 16, 2012 - 05:04pm PT
Whoa, mama, can this really be the end? That's not something this Californian sees every day. My idea of full conditions is a temperature below 50 degrees F.

Nice.

John
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
  Nov 16, 2012 - 05:22pm PT
Credit: Mighty Hiker
BITGOD.
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
  Nov 16, 2012 - 06:39pm PT
The summit shot was my favorite!

It says "Dude we're gunna die!!!! But I'm still gettin a shot! And some video!"

That summit shot shows the shite storm and the state of mind yall were in. I'd frame that one before a sunny afternoon summit pose on top of a Yosemite trade route any day.

Way to stay burly, stay smart and get er done!
-Scott
MH2

climber
  Nov 16, 2012 - 09:08pm PT
Yes, the summit shots were just right for the conditions.


I usually don't try to correct myself. It would be a full-time job. However, I shouldn't have insulted the Abraham brothers by saying 150 years. I think it was this merely 60 year-old summit shot that I saw some semblance to:






edit: 62 and a few months old
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 17, 2012 - 03:09pm PT
Thanks everyone!

Bruce- you're awesome!! Lang ski boots... Too funny ;) that was challenging I bet.

Reminds me of my first time ever climbing my ex took me out in my big clunky Nike's! I hated it!! ;)

Nice pic Anders. Is that Mushroom? Is the gentleman in the pic yawning??

Thanks Scott! I always enjoy your TR's so, I am glad to share the stoke!!

MH2- wow. That shot is iconic. I certainly don't think that mine quite compare, but thanks for the high praise!
Prod

Trad climber
  Nov 18, 2012 - 08:10pm PT
Nucking Futs!

Prod.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
  Nov 18, 2012 - 08:12pm PT
Mike - yes, it's Mushroom, in fairly full conditions in March 1976. One of The Bear's first climbs at Squamish - IIRC he's belaying Carl Austrom.
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 18, 2012 - 08:58pm PT
Too cool Anders!! Thanks for that!



Y'alls crazy, F'ing classic
Thanks!!!!



Cool! I mean, cold! I mean, what's yer problem???

Jeebus, I think Ezra hit the nail on the head. See above ;)
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Nov 29, 2012 - 10:26pm PT
Fish Boy sent me another pic. It's not spectacular or anything but it illustrates pretty well how dry it was when we started..

Nick de Kam
moosedrool

climber
lost, far away from Poland
  Dec 11, 2012 - 09:10pm PT
What an adventure! And after all that, you had spare energy to have a beer?!

Excellent TR! Thank you.
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Dec 11, 2012 - 09:15pm PT
Thanks Moosedrool! A beer and some nosh was a must after a mission like that!! I still had to drive 45 mins home to whistler in the first snowstorm of the season too! ;)
SCseagoat

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
  Dec 11, 2012 - 09:19pm PT
That was, that was, well as someone said "epic". Incredible shots...I was a shiverin' looking at them. Nice add on pics from posters....neat!

Susan
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Dec 11, 2012 - 09:54pm PT
Ya Riles it was pretty crazy. By the last pitch we just wanted it to be over and then Nick went and got his knee stuck... It`s actually pretty friggin hilarious after the fact! :)
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Author's Reply  Mar 28, 2014 - 03:00pm PT
Bump for those who might have seen my reworking of this tale for Alpinist 44 but never saw the original with images!!
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