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New Remote and Steep Quebec Nine-Pitch Route

Patrick Brouillard and Charles Lacroix have climbed a new nine-pitch 5.10+ C2+ on a remote wall north of Quebec City.

The 200-metre climb is called Les Clandestins and heads up Mont de l’équerre un Hautes Gorges de la Rivière Malbaie on Charlevoix. The same cliff as the famous ice climb Pomme d’or WI5.

Brouillard heading up pitch-seven. Photo Lacroix

Their “big wall” adventure included a lengthy approach (often done with a five-kilometre canoe paddle), a porta-ledge sleep, a 15-metre whipper on pitch seven and steep crack systems.

It took Brouillard and Lacroix three years, due to poor weather and conditions from the time of the initial planning to climbing. Their ascent took two days and one night.

Staring up a low pitch. Photo Brouillard

The first route on the wall was climbed in May 1972 by Paul Ross and John Porter and is called Redcoats Ressurrection.

It’s an alpine-esque 10-pitch line up the obvious buttress up the middle of the wall. It’s one of eastern Canada’s biggest and most adventurous climbs.

Lacroix waking up on day two. Photo Brouillard

Other routes on the wall include lines up the two sides of the buttress, Guide from 1978 up the right and Cascade from 1974 up the left. Of the older lines, Redcoats Resurrection has had a number of repeats.

The wall waited nearly 40 years before another new route. In 2016, Brouillard and Hugo Drouin climbed Renaissance 5.10 up six-pitches of good granite.

Quebec still has a number of big unexplored routes that require long approaches, route cleaning and a sense of adventure.

1: Les Clandestins / 2: Renaissance / 3: Cascade / 4: Redcoats Resurrection / 5: Guide / 6: Pomme d’or Photo: Brouillard