The impressive Snowpatch Spire is the most obvious spire when entering the Bugaboo's. It stands just to the west of Applebee campground and is host to over 50 routes from 5.8 to 5.12. The largest wall on Snowpatch is the east face with routes ranging from 12 to 15 pitches and almost all of them being big wall in nature. The south, west and north faces boast numerous classic free routes such as the popular Snowpatch, Surfs Up, Kraus-McCarthy and Sunshine Crack. Snowpatch Spire is also the most difficult spire to climb with no routes to the top rated under 5.8.
All routes on the west face are approached via the Bugaboo-Snowpatch Col located on the north end of Snowpatch Spire. After climbing over the Col walk south to your desired route.
For routes on the north face follow the trail from the campground or hut toward the Col and north face is to your left once your in the Col.
The east face is obvious from the hut and the campground.
The south face is accessed via the Bugaboo Glacier. There is a trail to the Glacier from the hut, but from the campground its fastest to just scramble over scree straight toward the Glacier.
INTRODUCTIONI met Ted Davies in Yosemite in 1975. He had just climbed the Salathe Wall on El Cap. His report was very positive about the quality of this line. If he and his buds thought it was similar to the Steck-Salalthe, we can believe it. Ted Davies Pat Derouin, and Ian Rowe were among the top alpine climbers in British Colombia during the early seventies. ...[more]Browse More Classics in International
My partner and I were on Snowpatch 24-Aug-2010. We went down the Kraus-McCarthy with two ropes, without a problem. Big rappel bolts/rings. No need to use any of the slings we saw!
The new Snowpatch Rappels descent is about 5 mins walk down and to [skier's] LEFT, down the glacier and around the corner, where you will see a large cairn on a shoulder. You will most likely need crampons at the least. All the raps are shorter than 30m, so you only need to get one rope wet! It's quite a long hike down to the hut from here with some crevasses en route as well. Note: In warm conditions, with lots of snowfall, expect this to be very WET and cold!
We recommend doing the Bugaboo-Snowpatch col descent. It's a few more minutes walk on the glacier, which is/was in pretty good shape. We rapped with a single rope for the first two raps, and then one double rope rap and walked down to the bottom of the col. If you do the first rap to the third station, your rope can get stuck and we avoided this the second time we did it. The first rap station is somewhat high and hard to see on the big boulder south of the small sign (skier's RIGHT) at the col. The second rap station is at the bottom of the rocks on skier's RIGHT. The third station is down under the [skier's] RIGHT side of the large boulder in the middle of the col. If you do the first rap with double ropes, then you might go to skier's LEFT of the large boulder and not be able to get around to it. Keep a couple of 4' slings handy, as the bolts on this last station are way up high! Note: In warm conditions, this rap is quite crazy with steep, loose mud and lots of rocks to easily knock off!