A few years ago, Raphael Slawinski, Rich Akitt, Marcus Norman and Lyle Rotter made the first ascent of Nachtmahr, an 85-metre M9 WI5 in the Ya Ha Tinda Range. Watch Slawinski and Henriquez on their new route below.
“This is a cool (I think it’s cool, anyway), fully mixed route located in a rarely visited corner of the Rockies,” said Slawinski on his blog. “It sits on the northeast aspect of Maze Peak in the Dry Ranges, overlooking James Lake and the prairies to the east. More than likely you’ll have the whole place to yourself. The route does not appear to come in every year, so go check it out soon – who knows when it’ll be in next?”
Pitch 1 (30 m, WI4/5): A number of lines are possible, ranging from thinnish low-angle ice on the left to overhanging mushrooms in the centre. Belay from screws at the top left of the bottom ice flow.
Pitch 2 (25 m, M9): Move right to a small pillar and the first bolt. From the top of the pillar follow bolts left underneath a roof. Pull over the roof with a few big moves on small holds and continue more easily to a patch of ice. The ring-bolt station at its top is threatened by falling ice from the next pitch, so it’s better to continue another few metres over a rock arch to a sheltered bolt belay on the right.
Pitch 3 (30 m, M7 WI5): A couple of big reaches on small holds gain a dagger (harder if broken off) and easier climbing up the right edge of a curtain. In spite of its large size the curtain does not appear to be very well attached to the rock. Given one of the first ascentionists’ history with collapsing ice, this pitch was also equipped with bolts. Belay at a bolted station a few metres back from the lip on the right.