Zach Attack

This is the oft-admired continuation pitches above G2. Only on occasion is ice even seen in the obvious break, and even more rarely is there enough to be worthy of an effort. When “in,” it is a recommended modern-day classic. The first ascent took several efforts to work out the route finding. A full rock rack up to fist-sized cams including pitons and a Spectre or two is recommended. The primary description below is based on conditions during the first ascent. Recent ascents have managed it with considerably less ice.

Approach: Climb the lower ice of G1 and G2 and continue up the gully to the obvious break in the steep headwall above.

Route: The first pitch (5.7 mixed) stretches 60 m following the prominent break in the headwall. The first ascent busted out right after about 40 m on the top of an ice pillar then stepped back to the left following a series of “sporty” slabs to reach a small bowl and belay on fixed pins. Others have climbed to the belay more directly up a “nasty-looking” wide slot. Pitch two starts up a thin smear to some skinny columns (WI 4+) and continues up slopes to an ice belay in the next small bowl. If unformed, pitch two can be skirted on the right via mud, choss and moss, at 5.5, with little to no gear. The third short pitch of thin, poorly protected ice (WI 5) leads to another slope and a screw belay. The final 25 m pitch is the plum. It features a steep and mushroomed pillar with good gear that ends with an overhanging move onto a curtain. Belay from a tree.

Descent: Rappel the route using a combination of trees, rock anchors and ice V-threads. Two-ropes required.

Length and Difficulty
Rock rating: