Sunday, January 29, 2012

Ice Climbing on the Homer Bluffs

Homer sounded like a glorious destination amidst the negative digit temperatures that have been lurking in the Anchorage area. I've never been there in the winter and word on the great internet was that the ice was in.

We parked at the end of Saltwater drive and ran into a crusty local named Bill and his cleaner more modern counterpart with AMS logos. He told us about a fixed rappel line over the bluffs, it was a pretty straight forward approach.

Looking Down the Bluffs, Two People Walking


Ryan at the Bottom of the Rappel


The approach to the climbs along the beach was as good as it gets. There were 3 stellar climbs off the beach, and a handful of smaller less aesthetic lines all within a 1/2 mile or so.

I've been unmotivated to climb the standard local circuits this winter and am horribly out of shape. I am not an off the couch grade 4 or 5 ice climber...but oh how those lines are the most appealing looking. So we skipped Red Line and Dog Day and instead went up a very fat and perfect Bored Walk. It was a super fun climb, and in direct sunlight...bonus!

Ryan Rappelling Over Bored Walk


With more daylight to play with we did the first pitch of Dog Day, then walked down the beach past the rappel line in and climbed a single pitch grade 3 to get back to the rim. A nice day out with sun, and the sounds of the ocean.

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