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|Type: ||Trad, Ice, Alpine, 1 pitch, 40'|
|Consensus: ||WI3 [details]|
|FA: ||unknown, maybe 2 blokes blown off Alexander's approach|
|Submitted By: ||Leo Paik on Feb 5, 2005|
Lower ice tier, climb 3. Thanks Bernard!
This is a small, inviting, center prow/proboscis (labeled 3 in the topo) of ice on the small, lower cliff band of ice just below the upper tier of ice (including Olympic Games). To the L includes a short ice chimney (2+), a vertical curtain with ice bacon (just R), and another vertical ice curtain with ice bacon (just R). It doesn't look like much, but it can be a fun warmup to approach the upper ice tier.
To approach this area, park at Bear Lake in RMNP. Snowshoes are recommended, although a nice wallow can warm you up if you so desire. Hike the well-packed trail 0.5 mi to Nymph Lake. There is an old fire road/trail that shaves a couple minutes going directly from Bear Lake to Nymph. To spy this area (probably the R profile of the top of Olympic Games), you must look carefully from an arms length of the Restoration area sign, posted on one shore of the lake. You can only see the top of some of the ice from here. Take a bearing & head through the trees. Stay lower in the basin as there is a steep, avalanche-potential slope just to the R of the ice if you try to contour. It can be challenging to find the ice once you are in the forest. As you get close to the cliffs, you will likely see bits of the ice 150 ft above, head up. Snow can be chest-deep on this last bit if no one has approached lately. You can drop off the trail between Nymph & Dream Lakes and drop into the drainage below the ice but this is more challenging. Note, you can get a bit disoriented in the trees with all the crisscrossing snow shoe tracks going in circles.
Step the prow. The ice can be more brittle than it looks. There can be a short bit of iceless rock about 15-20 ft up. Hop over this bit (sort of reminiscent of Icecapade), wander slightly R (where there is more ice), and head into a path through the bushes above. Sling a tree for a belay.
3-4 screws, include 1 stubby.
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