Lav­i­gne Broth­ers Go Big on Baf­fin

Gripped - - NEWS - BP

The brother-duo of Joshua and De­lano Lav­i­gne made a quick trip from July 16 to Au­gust 2, 2013, to Auyuit­tuq National Park on Baf­fin Is­land. Dur­ing a trip to Mount As­gard in 2012 Joshua no­ticed the im­pos­ing 900- me­tre wall on Mount Turn­weather, mak­ing a men­tal note to get more in­for­ma­tion about the free climb­ing po­ten­tial on the wall. Af­ter see­ing pho­tos of the route, Dry Line 5.10/ A2, es­tab­lished in 1996 by Jia Con­don and Rich Pro­haska, they de­cided to re­turn with the in­ten­tions of free climb­ing the route. They fer­ried their gear to the base of the two-kilo­me­tre wall and set up a camp on the glacier. Af­ter ar­riv­ing they quickly re­al­ized that the wall would need more time to dry af­ter a snowy and cool spring. They waited as the weather con­tin­ued to be un­set­tled, but still man­aged to climb a short and es­thetic line on Gaunt­let Peak they called Vi­o­let Ridge, 5.9, 400 me­tres, and climbed an un­named peak fur­ther up val­ley.The route Dry Line never re­ally dried, so the team changed their ob­jec­tive and climbed 600 me­tres of new ter­rain with im­pres­sive freeclimb­ing up to 5.12R. But lis­ten­ing to their in­tu­ition and ig­nor­ing the fore­cast, had them de­scend­ing a cou­ple hours be­fore a sur­prise storm rolled through. The rain and warmer temps sat­u­rated the North­west face, mak­ing free-climb­ing very un­likely. They adapted to the new con­di­tions and fo­cused on a dif­fer­ent climb­ing ob­jec­tive: a beau­ti­ful ridge on the east side of Turn­weather. The route But­ter Knife Ridge, 5.12, AI3, climbs a 500- me­tre couloir to a col, which then con­tin­ues to the sum­mit for 400 me­tres of quin­tes­sen­tial Baf­fin gran­ite, golden split­ters with sculpted face holds. The weather once again turned wet and cold, which fin­ished the trip.–

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