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Ice Climbing in Illinois

Went ice climbing at Starved Rock State Park on Saturday.  It was quite a bit more difficult than I remembered, and pretty fun excepting the fact that we were climbing up a waterfall that had a bunch of ice under it – making it quite wet.  Call me stupid but I never quite put two and two together to realize ice climbing is most often done where waterfalls used to be – on icefalls, and this means on lots of days water will still be running down them.  Duh.  Went with good friends and had fun – got pretty cold, of course.  Climbed “Wildcat”

Ice climb "Wildcat" at Starved Rock

Ice climb "Wildcat" at Starved Rock

and hiked down to the icefall Tonti and checked it out – quite a cool formation this year, see the photo – it’s like it broke off, but didn’t fall all the way down.  We watched some guys lead climb.  It seems  so nuts, screwing ice screws into the ice and clipping the rope onto them as they went.  I’ve heard the best ice placement is worse then the worst rock climbing placement, not sure if that is rumor of fact.  Still seems scary for a guy to fall off and hope to be held by a screw in ice.  But that much more exciting.

Ice climb Tonti with lead climber

Ice climb Tonti with lead climber

On a different note reading a book called “Deep Survival” – excellent study of the commonalities survivors of plane crashes, boat sinkings, mountain mishaps have.  I love that stuff.

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