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5 of us from Vancouver and 6 from PG headed to Marble Canyon for a weekend of climbing on Friday, Oct. 9. We had a wonderful winter night that dropped down to temps of -12c. We finally mustered up the motivation to crawl out of our tents bright and early at 10am and were on the rock by the crack of noon, when it was finally warm enough to touch the rock. a group of five of us (Gary Shorthouse, Mike McMinn, Amber Ringers, Jessica Jelinek and Paul Cottle)headed up Sysiphus for the day, a 6-pitch 5.9. and the others (Ken Cox, Anita, Val, Ilene, Frank Spears and Kevin Spears) spent the day on a two-pitch 5.7 Mayday and Aspiring, followed by a few single pitch routes in the Gateway area. The day ended with some tense moments and a mini epic with a pair of the climbers getting caught in the dark on the descent having to rely on the trees to rappel to the bottom of the route (the anchors are incredibly difficult to spot in the dark!). But, apart from being a bit cold upon their return, everything worked out alright and we finished off the night with dinner, a campfire and some thanksgiving pie. After another long, cold night we were once again on the rock at the nice, early hour of noon. Gary Shorthouse and Paul Cottle headed up to climb the 5-pitch, 5.9 route "Sans Souci" and the rest of the crew spent the day cragging in the "Mouse" area of Marble Canyon. It was a great, relaxed day of top roping some fairly challenging lines, including the 10b "Bulge of Fun", finished off with Val going for an on-sight of "Rather Be on Robson" 10a, and entertaining us all (once we made sure he was ok, of course) with his giant whipper. All and all a great trip, despite the cold nights and out of control adiabatic temperature change. For those headed to Marble Canyon on future trips, its a great area that offers tons of climbing at various grades, with everything from single pitch climbs to the 17-pitch classic "The yellow Brick Road". The area is never busy,which is always a bonus and there is a great campground just down the road. A word of caution: since Marble Canyon is not heavily used, there tends to be a lot of loose rock around, so you must always be aware of rock fall and never go there without a helmet; even when you're just hanging out at the base of a climb. Some of the routes could also use a bit of retro-bolting as 1/2 inch bolts still exist on several routes (Budweiser comes to mind). Also, Route finding can be a bit challenging on the multi-pitch routes as they tend to wander and traverse across large ledge systems. Be prepared with a topo and make note of where your rap stations are for the descent. The descent off most of the multi-pitch routes is significantly easier with a 70m rope or even two ropes if possible. We often have two parties meet at the top and share ropes for the rappel.
Have some photos from this event that you'd like to share in our photo album? Please forward them to Kayla Stevenson at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that we prefer to receive the photos in approximately 640x480 or 750x500 pixels - do NOT send original high-res photos. If you have a LOT of photos, please submit up to twenty of your favorites (only) for a day event, or up to forty of your favourites for a multi-day event. Thank you.
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