After monitoring this climb and waiting many years for the ice to form I finally made the trek, anticipating it to be in great shape at the end of summer following an epic winter. To my disappointment, both Mendel right and Ice Nine are completely melted out - bone dry top to bottom.
This was after one of the biggest winters in a decade or so, with snow still persisting in places it hasn't been in many years. But not in these routes, unfortunately. So the modern report is this - the only way these couloirs can be climbed nowadays is either in early season, on snow, or only after many heavy winters in an row - a situation that is not likely to occur again.
Thank you Alois. It was a great climb with a layer of fresh powder snow covering the ice. The crux was in prime shape. We never did find the fixed pins on the right hand wall below the crux. My favorite memory is climbing back up to Lamarck Col in the pitch darkness after a perfect ascent in full conditions.
Bill Krause and I climbed the right couloir in full conditions in early November 1983. There were 10 pitches of solid ice plus about 80 feet of mixed ground topping out. This was the first of many wonderful trips Bill Krause and I did over the next 30 years. If you read this Bill, thanks for all the great fun!
As mentioned before, the climb mainly consisted of snow on top of rock. We were not able to find the proper descent route, and ended up rappelling and down-climbing to get back to the glacier.
Fun climb. Good ice. With some loose snow on some ice sections, which made it more exciting than it should be.
Climbed with Kevin and Moosetracks. Nice and easy hike in on Saturday but it was a long Sunday. 3 roped pitches with about half on ice, half on snow and rock.
Good conditions, straightforward. I'd probably call the single "technical" move on the rock pitch 5.5. Car to car, 14 hours. Some loose crap in the upper gully.
climb, worth doing. 7 pitches with Justin, some ice low and mostly snow covered rock higher up. Views of Evolution Basin from the top were awesome!
Climbed with Pavel. Original intention was Ice 9, but decided on the right due to conditions. Had some ice down low and then some fun mixed snow/rock up high.
In Dec '05, my partner and I tried to do Ice Nine, but when we came into view of the couloirs, neither looked in shape, so we opted for the right one instead. It was mainly snow on top of rock, and very sketchy. On the descent, couldn't find the downclimb from the ridge, so rapp'ed. Climbing back up to our camp on Lamarck Col took forever, due to deep powder.