The Ghost River

The Cupcake Conspiracy

Tags: Posted on June 20, 2016

The Cupcake Conspiracy

After failing to find any alpine routes in decent shape late last October, due to extremely mild conditions, plan B landed us in the Ghost River area with our sights set on establishing a rock route up some untouched blue streaks on a virtually untouched wall in Bonanza Bay.  Michelle roped gunned Bonanza and I followed with a pack full of ropes, bolts and a drill.  We came in from above figuring out most of the intended line on the way down, and got it mostly bolted in the next day and half before the season’s first snow storm brought progress to a chilly halt.  It was a different yet enjoyable adventured discovering a way up a wall of high quality limestone with virtually no options for any natural gear.  Six months later, we finally made it back, drilling the crux pitch on lead, and sending it along with the rest of the route in a fun day.  

Lots more potential around here for more routes like this one, and having two or three like on the wall would allow for bigger days.

The Beta:
5 pitches, 150m, 5.11+   First ascent Michelle Kadatz and Jon Walsh, June 12, 2016.   A fun bolted route in the on mostly excellent rock in the middle of the South facing Bonanza Bay wall, about halfway between Bonanza and the Bonanza decent gully.  All belay stations are equipped with Fixe rap rings.  16 draws needed and 2 or 3 of them should be extendable.  Two ropes is best for getting back down.  A 70-meter rope works for almost all rappels although at this point, it’s unknown if it will get you down pitch 2 but likely very close.      
Lots more potential around here for more routes like this one, and having two or three like on the wall would allow for bigger days.

The grades aren’t confirmed although some friends repeated it the day after we finished it.  Perhaps some more feedback will help confirm the grades.

Pitch 1,  5.10a 10 bolts, 35-meters.  It starts behind two good sized spruce trees about 50 meters right of Bonanza, and should be easy to find.   Follow the bolt line to good ledge.     
Pitch 2, 5.11c/d  15 bolts, 40-meters.   Face climb up and right from the belay towards a blue-streaked corner.  Head left at a roof (extendable draws useful here), and continue trending up and left around the corner to small ledge and a station.  
Pitch 3, 5.11d/12a 7 bolts,  15-meters.  Head up and right towards a roof, before making a crux move back left through it, which leads to a station at a decent stance.    
Pitch 4, 5.10b 10 bolts, 35-meters.  Prickly featured holds lead up perfect grey rock to an anchor at a big ledge on the right.  
Pitch 5, 5.10d 11 bolts, 35-meters.  Straightforward face climbing to the rim.