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New Hard Rockies Mixed Route

In the early 1980s, Jim Elzinga and party climbed a new route up the northeast face of Cirrus Mountain. Cirrus is famous for its west facing Polar Circus and Weeping Wall.

In 2011, Elzinga and Gripped editor Brandon Pullan climbed a new route in the valley below the northeast face and called the route The Mentor WI4+ 70 metres. Elzinga has added another route to the now-called Mentor Valley with Anna Smith.

[shareprints gallery_id=”9939″ gallery_type=”slider” gallery_position=”pos_center” gallery_width=”width_100″ image_size=”large” image_padding=”0″ theme=”dark” image_hover=”false” lightbox_type=”slide” titles=”true” captions=”true” descriptions=”true” comments=”true” sharing=”true”]As Elzinga recalls, “Anna Smith and I headed back into Mentor Valley yesterday and finished our route, The Proposal  WI4, M8, five pitches. It is the  the obvious corner to the right of The Mentor with ice at the bottom.”

The pair attempted the route a week ago, but had to return for a second attempt to finish it off. They returned with near perfect conditions.

Anna Smith wins the Jen Higgins Award with Michelle Kadatz

“No bolts, no metal detectors or obscure location. Just cold temps, windy weather, spindrift avalanches thundering around and over us. A two-hour-plus approach and challenging route finding,” said Elzinga. “There was no pulling the rope and trying  for a red point, just pure technical Rockies alpinism. It was an awesome adventure. We got it right yesterday. Anna led the crux, a steep rock over-hang on the second-pitch right off the belay with real snotty pro. It was M8 with big commitment and consequence. It’s Anna’s first new route in the Rockies. The more we suffered, the bigger Anna’s smile.”

As Steve House recently commented, “Jimmy is an original Canadian hard man.” Elzinga and House recently returned from the Central Garwhal where they climbed the “Moonflower Buttress of the Himalayas,” according to House.

Steve House and Jim Elzinga’s new route

From Fall 2014:

Rare ascent of Wild Thing

Rare Ascent of Alberta’s North Face

New Rockies Mixed

New Rockies Moderate