American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, Canada, Alberta, Canadian Rockies, Mt. Wilson, Rivers of Babylon

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 2005

Mt. Wilson, Rivers of Babylon. On November 26 and 27 Paul McSorley and I climbed a new nine-pitch route on Mt. Wilson, in the bowl between Mixed Monster and Ice Nine. Rivers of Babylon is the central of three ice flows. The climbing is sustained, technical, and fun the entire way. It was also delicate and often run-out, requiring extra focus. For four pitches we climbed mostly rock, traversing left and right on weaknesses through the overhanging buttress, to gain the thin flow. The flow provided excellent thin ice and mixed climbing for another five pitches. Good screws were rare to nonexistent, but tool placements came easy. The rock is generally excellent by Rockies standards. We placed no bolts. We fixed three ropes on the first four pitches on day one, descended to Rampart Creek Hostel for the night, and the next day ascended our ropes and climbed the rest of the route. A one-day ascent would be an impressive feat, but doable by a strong party. The route is probably best earlier in the season and will be extremely dangerous when the avalanche hazard increases. Rack: 1 set of nuts, 2 sets of cams from 0.5" to 3.5" and 1 #4 Camalot, a few pitons, screws, 70m ropes recommended. 480m (400+m vertical), VI M6+ WI5+R.

Jon Walsh, Canada

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