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Alaska Highway, Squamish

Posted: Sat Jun 16, 2012 10:13 pm
by skykilo
Naomi and I wanted to climb something exciting this week. The weather was mostly unfavorable, but yesterday was good enough. I've been fantasizing for a few years about climbing the Northern Lights. Yesterday we jumped on the first half of it, Alaska Highway.

The first pitch involves some authentic Squamish monkey business.
15, 00

Naomi made a proud on-sight lead of the first pitch, especially considering how wet it was. I blew a foot twice after stepping into some mud but managed to hold a sweet finger lock. I was lucky my finger wasn't bleeding after that.
15, 01

I've led things with harder moves than the second pitch, but as a sustained pitch it might be the hardest thing I've led. Is it a roof? An overhanging groove? A traverse? Who knows, but it's spectacular climbing.
15, 02

Pulling through one bulge after another, it seemed like it would get easier. Eventually in an open book type feature it was only slightly overhanging, but wet.

Naomi near the top of the pitch.
15, 03

The third pitch is pure bliss.
15, 04

Pulling past the chimney.
15, 05

It has good rests.
15, 06

The fourth pitch begins with a lieback.
15, 07

Naomi before the crux hand traverse on the fifth pitch.
15, 08

This climb is stellar! The 5.8 runout face to Astroledge is only runout by Squamish standards. The whole climb, while challenging and sustained, offers great protection.

When it's dry in August and July: Northern Lights, anyone?

Re: Alaska Highway, Squamish

Posted: Sat Jun 16, 2012 11:49 pm
by naomig
What an amazing climb to end my climbing season this year. Thanks for coming and doing something super awesome with me, Sky.

Re: Alaska Highway, Squamish

Posted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 1:23 am
by PeteH
You guys are killin it. Nice Send!

Re: Alaska Highway, Squamish

Posted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 6:09 am
by BettyBoost
Big Betty says you two are the SHIIIIIIIT! Crushing it. Good luck with your surgery Naomi! Heal up quick!

Re: Alaska Highway, Squamish

Posted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 7:58 am
by Diamond Dachshund
Is that crazy-ass roof the 11c/d crux on the second pitch? WTF. Looks like good enough pro to send with confidence though. Climbin' tuff are we?

Re: Alaska Highway, Squamish

Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 9:48 pm
by skykilo
That roof is part of the crux pitch, but it's not really a cruxy pitch. It's more like 30 m of fairly sustained beatdown. Hopefully I'll get a chance to climb at Squamish when it's dry somewhere in the July-September range.