Wednesday, June 8, 2011

First Group of Photos In from the Ausable Retreat

6-4-11 Slide Report
On Saturday, June 4th, Tony & Martha Stauffer, Wayne Wilson, and I climbed Bottle Slide on Giant Mountain. Though my plan was to take advantage of prime conditions to climb Eagle Slide, the directions to the herd path weren’t complete and we ended up to the left of Eagle. I’d done Eagle some 15 years ago by boulder-hopping up Roaring Brook to its base. The route suggested this time took us instead up Roaring Brook trail for an hour to the right side of the brook, with a left turn at a cairn. But after 200 yards or so, what seemed to be the herd path turned uphill sharply and had us bashing and clawing our way up a spruce/alder tangle till we finally spotted open air on our left. Getting into the open put us onto Bottle Slide rather than Eagle, so we made that our day’s adventure.

Though the biggest difficulty was route finding in that tangle, we next encountered steep scree fields with 100-lb boulders moving when stepped upon. Past that was sharp, nubbly conglomorate slabs approaching 40-degree pitch for between 600 and 1,000 ft and ending in a smooth vertical granite wall. The last effort required route finding in dense thickets clinging to the base of the cliff, locating a break in the face, and scrambling up a few pitches until coming out on the ridge trail. Overall a good workout and adventure.

--Submitted by John Tiernan

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