|Loch Vale Gorge
This is not the actual name for the route, however, it is not clear what the name of this route is. It is an obvious line which has been done for years during wet winters. It is listed in B. Gillett's guide, RMNP High Peaks (topo p. 249), as 'interesting possible route starting on log.' Well, in good conditions like Jan, 2005, it is. Toproping is probably preferable, as leading this would probably be a bit of a serious proposition as little protection is available until you are past the crux.
Find this route on the right side of the Loch Vale Gorge's ice area. Hike up the trail as for Lochluster, Gorge Yourself, and Mixed Feelings. When you get to the climbs, go right, find a log lying against the cliff. There you go.
To set this up for a TR, lead one of the easier climbs to the left and set up a TR off trees or hike around to the right to the ledge above the climb, rappel to the ledge. Sling some trees.
Balance up the sticky, low-angle log. Find a balancy crux at the transition from log to rock to ice that is very dependent upon exact ice conditions. Continue up near vertical ice to the top. It is probably 70 feet or less. Note, the traverse to the 2 bolt anchor to rap off to the left can be a bit exposed.
Remember Alex's words, the best climber is the one who is having the most fun. Hee Haw!
Sadly, it sounds like the log is no longer leaning against the rock....
Best to TR, but if you must, a few screws, maybe a sling for the top of the log.
Slings off trees.
Around the crux, eh? Raquel Hink.
Simon cruising above the crux.
Being tall & skinny helps, and more ice, too. Bri...
|By Greg Sievers|
From: Estes Park, CO
Nov 25, 2007
I stuck 'pons and tools into this log many, many years ago. Perhaps it was the early 90s. Probably wasn't the first then either.
|By Brent Butler|
From: Del Norte, CO
Dec 30, 2013
The log is no longer propped up. Instead I traversed in from the right along a rail, then pulled up on a few tiny edges before reaching solid hooks just below the ice. Pretty fun, but lacking in the feet area.