Le Petite Morte 400m, 5.2
FA- G.Cornell and J.Miller, Aug. 2007
Keep these two fathers safe was the main thoughts on our minds as we descended from a new route up the deep north gully of a unnamed ridge/peak sandwiched between Wintour and Gap and directly above east of the famous ice climb called Whiteman’s.
A fast-to-access peak due to the highly -situated Elpoca Viewpoint parking lot, we hiked through woods abd around to the north flanks in just over an hour. Le Petite Morte is a deep cut in the north ridge, only meters wide in parts and its’ overgrowth in rubble is like finding an ancient temple in a jungle.
Jonathon forgot his helmet so I accepted the risk above as I was leading entirely. After a early impasse detoured left, the gully is impossible to lose. At the crux, a bowl that exits the ridge we discovered our rope had been cut at exactly the half way mark. Sheeesh.
Just before the summit a second exposed crux along the ridge left us frightened with this helpless rope. Soon after the cairn, the third crux along the south ridge where the first ascent travelled in the Kananaskis Golden Age. Careful downclimbing to a ledge we pondered this slabby skull of dandruff rock. Intense combing found us a sole seam to hammer in a Lost Arrow. Putting little force on this poor rig we got 20m to an overhung chunk. Wasting 15minutes to drill a 1/4″ bolt to only have the drill bit break from the collar. A deep breath, a silent prayer, the cut rope on one pin was weighted- twice- both dads kicked off for home the remainder of the south ridge.