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Trip Report    

Observation Rock/North Face

Climbed on Sunday 10/11/2015 as a group of 3. Approach was uneventful, and the large cairn indicating the trail up to the Flett Glacier has some yellow paint on it. There was a rain/snow mix over the past day or so and early morning rocks/logs were slick with a thin layer of ice. Since the “typical” snowfield approach to the rockband at the base of the climb was melted out, we opted to put on crampons and go up climbers right of the Flett and then traverse over right to the start of the climb by the normal rockband.

The climb was thick ice from top to bottom, no pickets needed. Bottom section of the climb had a thin layer of frozen snow/ice which made for easier climbing early on. We took 9 screws total and used all of them (i.e., 5 screws for leading). Last pitch to the lip was done as 30m and also used all 5 screws on lead. The top 60-90m of the climb had more dinner-plating of ice than the bottom, so climbers should take care not to climb straight up with the belay station in the fall line of the ice. Climbing was strenuous at times, and we did a combination of 30 and 60m pitches, spending 4-5hours on the route.

Total car-to-car time was about 15 hours. It was an absolutely beautiful day to be out in the park, and did not see a single other person the entire time!