Parkway Ice. January 18-20, 2019

Trip Report Author:  Gord Matthies

Participants: Rob Denson (Leader), Jessica Ambler, Gord Matthies

Friday evening started with Rob and Jessica rolling through Red Deer to pick up Gord on the way to Beauty Creek Hostel.  We ended up being the only three people there all weekend.  After a couple of false starts on the heaters due to the last occupants turning the propane off at the tank, we settled in for a fantastic weekend.

Shades of Beauty looking very beautiful indeed!

Shades of Beauty looking very beautiful indeed!

Anyone who has climbed with Rob knows we get an early start so Saturday morning we headed up towards Shades of Beauty with our headlamps leading the way.  Rob lead up some fantastic ice and three pitches.

Jessica coming over the top

Jessica coming over the top

Obligatory post-climb group selfie

Obligatory post-climb group selfie

The Anna Clare Smith memorial greeted us at the top, as well as a view of Stanley Falls across the valley and a view down the Athabasca River.

The Anna Clare Smith memorial greeted us at the top, as well as a view of Stanley Falls across the valley and a view down the Athabasca River.

unnamed (2).png

Back to the hostel for cheese, meat, and cracker appetizers followed by a delicious curry chicken.  A little wine and lemon meringue pie for dessert, lots of laughs and discussion solving the world’s problems and there goes four hours!  We even spent some time learning improvisation techniques… a very full evening!

Up even earlier (!) on Sunday to head to Nothing But the Breast which was one of the few climbs in the area that Rob had not done before. It was a beautiful sunny and warm day.

Up even earlier (!) on Sunday to head to Nothing But the Breast which was one of the few climbs in the area that Rob had not done before. It was a beautiful sunny and warm day.

The first pitch is a rambling grade 2 however it was so thin it was a pretty sketchy start to the day!  A little rope stretch was needed to find a decent place for Rob to build an anchor.

Rob sets up the next pitch. The sun was nice however it was starting to rain from those icicles above.

Rob sets up the next pitch. The sun was nice however it was starting to rain from those icicles above.

Jessica half way up the last pitch of Nothing But the Breast

Jessica half way up the last pitch of Nothing But the Breast

Unfortunately, conditions warranted that we did not ascend the very final piece of this climb.

The drive home was punctuated with that amazing blood moon!

The drive home was punctuated with that amazing blood moon!

Another great weekend reuniting these three climbers from a December trip.  Rob did a stellar job placing safe screws … and may spend this week sharpening a few that hit rock on that first pitch on Sunday!   Looking forward to more fun and challenging trips to come!