Maarten van Haeren is based in the Rockies, where he has made a number of big first ascents over the past two years, but is currently making his second ice tour through Quebec. Last year, he visited the Nipissis area with a group of strong climbers and climbed a handful of first ascents. This year, he is touring the classic areas and repeating some off-piste mixed lines. A handful of photos from his Quebec climbs below.
After a 50km snowmobile ride, we laid eyes on Carpe Diem (160m, WI5). The plumb-line start still awaits an ascent, with a big roof to a technical dagger. Despite bringing up the full arsenal of equipment (including the controversial bolt kit), we opted for the (much) easier all-ice start. @charlesroberge led a great start with a narrow section of body-width ice climbing. The start is barely visible on the left side of the big dagger. Beautiful line in a rarely visited section of the Côte Nord of Quebec.
Lightly swinging, Jas heads up the thin second pitch on the first ascent of Âme du Nord (125m M6 WI5 R), Nipissis, #Quebec. The route name translates as Northern Souls. This was a memorable route, completely unformed when we arrived, but conditions improved! The way ice forms on granite vs. limestone is completely fascinating!
Feeling so fortunate to have spent 9 days in the beautiful Nipissis river area. Wood stove in the cook tent, -33C climbing days and lots of rarely formed routes!! Some of the wildest thin ice routes I've ever climbed! None of this would be the same without an awesome crew, especially the locals!! #quebec #escaladequebec #iceclimbing #liveclimbrepeat #CanadianCreatives #theclimbinglife #winterclimbing #climbing_pictures_of_instagram #alpinism #greatnorthcollective #petzlgram #julboeyewear #alpinistmag #mountainpeopleunite #rablife @grippedmagazine @julbousa
@jasfauteux past the narrows on the right fork of the Fourchette Sternale (III 160m WI5). I love this photo since it really captures the depth and scale of the wall. Despite not being very tall, the wall was surprisingly featured on a macro-scale: huge, featureless granite roofs capped with yellow ice flows. For @pete_takeda's #northernsoul film premier, I'll be sharing some of my favourite shots from our Nipissis trip here on Instagram. We're currently planning the trip for February 2017! Check out a short article I wrote for the American Alpine Journal about the trip (link in bio). @alpinistmag
The steep granite slabs of Quebec form unrelenting icefalls, without a single ledge for hundreds of meters. On the route Ectoplasme (III 140m WI5+), @charlesroberge found us the most comfortable "ledge" on the whole route, a slightly less steep bit of ice underneath some daggers. Meanwhile, @jasfauteux engages the crux of our final new line in Nipissis, Quebec. For @pete_takeda's #northernsoul film premier, I'll be sharing some of my favourite shots from our Nipissis trip here on Instagram this week. We're currently planning the trip for February 2017! Check out a short article I wrote for the American Alpine Journal about the trip (link in bio). @americanalpine @rab.equipment @rab.equipment_canada @alpinistmag #aacgram #winvicisony @vicivisuals
Fine first day of ice climbing in Quebec, at the site of the old ice climbing festival Festiglace: Pont Rouge. This shot is a screen grab from a timelapse I shot of @charlesroberge putting up the rope on Valentin (usually WI5+, but WI4 today). Afterwards we did some mixed climbing on some pretty terrible rock ("just keep scraping till the ledge stops moving or falls off!") and had a beer with the locals. Good start to the trip! #Quebec #escaladequebec #escaladedeglace
The granite didn't disappoint at Lac à l'Ecluse near the Grands-Jardine park. The classy mixed route Lennox Hill was first rope soloed by Grant Meekens @ M6+ 5.10 A1 WI5, strong work! I sure encountered the 5.10 grade whilst handjamming on the steep crux traverse. This route has everything: cool moves on rock and ice, good gear and real exposure (even though you're never more than 60m off the ground!) Here, Nicolas is at the crux on P2, ready to make it to some ice! The start of the pitch climbs the wide crack below.