Friday, December 03, 2010

Ice Climbing in Cwm Idwal

I have had a great day out today with Jim who is on my instructor mentor scheme. We headed into Cwm Idwal to see how the ice was forming and went and climbed South Route (IV 4/5). I had not climbed the route before and Jim had never been ice climbing before which made it all the more enjoyable for both of us. The atmosphere improved still further as we realised the team ahead of us were friends of mine from Sheffield (Dave & John as per the photos below) which made the day very sociable. We climbed the route in 3 long pitches. The first pitch was thin at the top on the easy ground but the main ice was fun and short ice screws could be used to protect it. The main crux second pitch gives some superb climbing with the ice thick enough for screws and squidgy enough to give some satisfying placements. The top pitch of easy ground gave us some lovely views across the wintery landscape of the Park. A great day out in good company, brilliant early season conditions and enjoyable weather too!  I have included photos of the other routes that were being climbed for those keen to get out and enjoy the conditions. 

Dave Barker at the top of the first pitch

Dave on the second pitch

John on the second pitch

Jim finishing the second pitch

Climbers on The Screen and The Ramp

Devils Appendix not yet fully formed but climbers on The Devils Cellar

A frozen Llyn Idwal

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