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Provo Canyon Ice
Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
7th Heaven 
All is Quiet 
Apron Mixed Route 
Bridal Veil Left 
Bridal Veil Right 
Fang, The 
Finger of Fate, The 
FMR (F**k Me Raw) 
Icemate 
Itchy and Scratchy 
Lost Creek Ice Crag 
Millers Thriller 
Pipe Dream 
Playmate 
Post Nasal Drip 
Scratch and Sniff 
Shower Tower 
Soft 'n Juicy 
Stairway to Heaven 
Unknown to the left of All is Quiet 
Upper Bridal Veil Falls 
White Nightmare 
Unsorted Routes:

Stairway to Heaven 

WI5+ R

   
Type:  Ice, 10 pitches, 1000', Grade III
Consensus: WI5 [details]
FA: Jim Knight & Mark Ward 1975 (P1 to P4). Lou Dawson & George Vicenzi 1976 (P1 to P5).
Season: Winter (December to February)
Page Views: 7,193
Submitted By: John Ross on Oct 29, 2006
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Stairway To Heaven - all the way to the Pearly Gat...

Description 

P1 (WI3, 190'): The reliably forming first pitch is also known as "The Apron". This area is popular for beginners and top-roping. Belay from either of two sets of chains on a truck sized boulder. Scramble up the slope to the base of P2. P1 can be bypassed via a walk-around to the west.

Safety Note: There is a set of chains on each side of the truck sized boulder above the first pitch ("rock-strewn ledge"). Because of the large amount of loose rock on the sloping ledge there is significant rock fall danger if you rappel from these chains when there is no snow to hold the rocks in place. An easy walk-off to the west via a short (10') down-climb is best under most circumstances. In addition, while approaching and using the anchor chains, kicking loose any rocks on the ledge can be a hazard to climbers below on "The Apron". To avoid the falling rock and ice, most people at the bottom learn to "stay in close" or "well away" from the base of the climb.

P2 (WI4): Pillars in early season later turn into a fat curtain of steep ice. Over the top hike up the slope to two sets of anchors at the base of P3 (Anchors #1: Left side of P3 and often ice covered, Anchors #2: right side)
P3 (WI5): Wide steep curtain (pillars in early season)
P4:
P5: Forms late.
P6:
P7: Pillar. Usually the last pitch to form. Walk around this pitch if needed by hiking east along the ledge, up a short 5.5 chimney, then traverse back west to the ice.
P8:
P9:
P10:
Descent: It is possible to two-rope rappel down the right side. Rappel to the bottom of P2 then walk-off to the west.

Warning: Sluffs occasionally cascade down the route from snow built up on the ledges between pitches. A rapid warming for instance can loosen up the snow sending it down on unsuspecting climbers. Could be enough to knock a leader off the ice.


Location 

This is the large ice formation west (down canyon) from Bridal Veil Falls.


Protection 

Protect with ice screws. Bolted anchors and some fixed gear can be found (sometimes covered in ice).





Photos of Stairway to Heaven Slideshow Add Photo
The pillar on P7, Feb 2006. This was the last pitch i needed to have leads on all ten pitches. <br /> <br />We went to the top anyway. ;)
The pillar on P7, Feb 2006. This was the last pitc...
Stairway to Heaven 2005-06 season P's 1-10  1024 vertical feet of ice!
Stairway to Heaven 2005-06 season P's 1-10 1024 v...
Merrill Bitter - mid 80's
Merrill Bitter - mid 80's
<a href='/v/stairway-to-heaven/105879622'>Stairway to Heaven</a> 12-17-09.
BETA PHOTO: Stairway to Heaven 12-17-09.
One of the upper pitchs. 02/1993. Photo by Shawn Kenney.
BETA PHOTO: One of the upper pitchs. 02/1993. Photo by Shawn K...
Stairway condition on 12/08/2006
Stairway condition on 12/08/2006
Setting a screw near the top of pitch two. 02/1993. Photo by Shawn Kenney.
BETA PHOTO: Setting a screw near the top of pitch two. 02/1993...
<a href='/v/stairway-to-heaven/105879622'>Stairway to Heaven</a> starting with "The Apron" at the bottom (12-29-08).
BETA PHOTO: Stairway to Heaven starting with "The Apron" at the bot...
Climbers on the upper pitchs.  It's been a few years so I don't remember what ones, but it's about half way up.  01/1992 Photo by Shawn Kenney.
BETA PHOTO: Climbers on the upper pitchs. It's been a few yea...
Ice Bouldering the first pitch of Stairway to Haven 12/1992.  Photo by Shawn Kenney.
BETA PHOTO: Ice Bouldering the first pitch of Stairway to Have...
Me belaying Crisco on the second half of the first pitch (we broke it up into two pitches), December 2009. Photo by Matt Monson.
Me belaying Crisco on the second half of the first...
Upper pitches of <a href='/v/stairway-to-heaven/105879622'>Stairway to Heaven</a> (12-17-09).
BETA PHOTO: Upper pitches of Stairway to Heaven (12-17-09).
Stairway to Haven 1993.  If you look close you can see two climbers at the top of the first pitch setting up a top rop.
BETA PHOTO: Stairway to Haven 1993. If you look close you can...
Bridal Veil Falls (Right) 12/10/2011
Bridal Veil Falls (Right) 12/10/2011
At the base of "The Apron" during the Ice Festival 01/03. During peak season it gets a bit crowded, but not usually this crowded.
At the base of "The Apron" during the Ice Festival...
Stairway to Heaven conditions (January 2014)
Stairway to Heaven conditions (January 2014)
Comments on Stairway to Heaven Add Comment
Show which comments
By Stymingersfink
Dec 16, 2007
rating: WI5+ R

The first pitch goes 190' to the large rock-strewn ledge. There is a truck-sized boulder on the east side of the ledge, where chains were recently installed (on the east face of the boulder), whereas before there was only a single bolt to b/u a seated stance.

YOU WOULD NOT WANT TO RAP FROM HERE HOWEVER, AS DOING SO WILL SUBJECT YOU TO SUBSTANTIAL ROCKFALL DANGER!!!!!!!

Walk-off the first pitch, 100yds to the west, via a short (10') 5.1 chimney down-climb placing you near the base of a large fir tree.





The ledge where the climbers are in the photo at right is actually only 1/3 the way up the first pitch, where recently several sets of anchor chains have been installed to facilitate easier TR'ing. There is currently a discussion going on within the local ice climbing community whether they will be removed or not, as for the past 20 years top-ropers have practiced their V-thread and Screw anchoring skills in that location. No point in dumbing down the pool of climbers now, is there?

By bsmoot
Dec 17, 2007
rating: WI5

F.A. Jim Knight and Mark Ward in 1975 (first 4 pitches).
A year later, Lou Dawson and George Vicenzi climbed to the top of the 5th pitch.

By Ryan and Jesse Morse-Brady
Jan 12, 2014

Climbed the first pitch last week--the ice was great. The volkswagon-sized boulders that rained down all around us, however, were not.

Thankfully the only casualties were the backpacks and glasses.

Thankfully the only casualties were the backpacks and glasses.
Thankfully the only casualties were the backpacks and glasses.