South Face

(19 routes)

Almost an ice crag accessable from Empress Hut.

Face (Alpine)
South West
Reference Title Grade Length Quality Bolts Gone Natural pro Link to edit content
Dingle-Button 4-
Start at the second obvious gully right from Harper Saddle, 300m of moderately steep ice climbing leads to the Divide Route. A number of variations have been added left of the Dingle-Button (D-B) route, all appear to be about grade 3+.
Ray Button, Graeme Dingle, Jun 1979.
Dance Commander 4+
Starts up Dingle Button traverses into Deardissima to the shelf then finishes up Highway to Hell/Heavens Door. An easy way to the summit on moderate ground.
Guy McKinnon 2013
Tales of Choss 4+ 13
Start at the bottom of the D-B couloir and climb the rib on the right of the gully (crux 13). Join the Divide Route after six rope lengths.
Roger Parkyn, Andy MacFarlane, Feb 1984.
Deardissima 4
Gully immediately right of D-B. Rejoins D-B higher up.
Pat Deavol, Marty Beare, Jun 1999.
King Hit 5+
Follows a line of weakness through the steep area about 200m right of D-B but left of Heaven’s Door. Can descend by traversing off via the snowslopes to the D-B route. Five or six pitches.
Dave Vass, Hugh Barnard, Jun 1995.
Highway to Hell 6
Start just left of HD in a right trending gully on 65-85 degree ice (probably thin) then traverse right across a snowslope and step into a narrow gully. Follow the obvious gully and short steep walls. After the first shelf continue up a narrow gully to the second shelf and easy ground. Move left across the shelf then up right through the rock band to gain the summit icefield. Thirteen pitches.
Hugh Grierson, Jade Pope, Dec 1996.
Heaven’s Door 6
Start up steep loose ground 50m left of the Curver Route. Five pitches of hard climbing lead to some big ledges. Move right up mixed ground onto a second series of ledges and then up six pitches to reach the summit icefields.
Russell Braddock, Kim Logan, Jan 1983. Nick Cradock, Paul Aubrey, Jul, 1987
The Curver 6-
Ascend two pitches of 70-80 degree ice to where the gully lies back a little, then follow the gully up a series of short ice walls as it tends left, then up to the summit icefield.
Nick Cradock, Tobin Sorenson, Aug 1979.
Original Gunbarrels 6 WI5
Up two difficult pitches, into the bottom of the Curver Gully, then up three pitches until a diagonal gully cuts back right to the foot of the prominent double ice couloirs (the Gunbarrels). The first two or so original pitches fell off in 1999.
Jono Clarke, Mike Brown, Matt Quirke, Kester Brown, Nov 1999, WI 5- New Gunbarrels (First 2.5 pitches).
Yankee-Kiwi Couloir 6+
Ascends the Direct Start of the Left Hand Buttress Route, then up a steep ice couloir to the left of the Left Buttress to the base of the Original Gunbarrels
Nick Cradock, Tobin Sorenson, Aug 1979.
Left Buttress Direct Start 6 18
Head up a sustained wall with a small corner and cracks (about three pitches). Continue up prominent wide cracks in the bottom cliffs below the crest of the buttress (crux 18) and join the original Left Buttress route.
Nick Cradock, Nic Kagan, February 1978
Left Buttress 5+ 15
Ascend two pitches on the bottom wall nearer the Central Gullies, then traverse left directly below the main buttress to reach an ice ramp left of the buttress. Then ascend either directly up the buttress crest (crux 14/15), or up the ramp for a short distance before regaining the buttress, or up a short buttress left of the ramp before cutting back right again. Follow the buttress up progressively easier rock until the icefields. Then, depending on the state of the ice cliffs, traverse left and up, or else through the cliffs. Superb.
Graeme Dingle, Murray Jones, December 1970
Desolation Row 6
Start up Left Buttress, then traverse slightly right for 50m and up diagonally left for another 100m before ascending directly to emerge near the top of the Left Buttress.
Bill Denz, Nigel Perry, January 1981
Generation Y WI4 M5
A variation direct start to Central Gullies. Start from a thin gully just right of Desolation Row (MC6). Difficult mixed terrain on the third pitch where the variation exited the thin gully and tended right towards Central Gullies. Seven pitches.
Jamie Vinton-Boot, Matt Thom, October 2011
Central Gullies 6-
There are a number of variation starts and finishes. Choose a start and head up ice, sustained climbing through ice couloirs and icefields until easier 45o slopes lead to the icecliffs. Depending on the state of the cliffs, find a route through them to the summit.
Bill Denz, Peter Gough, Etienne Kummer, Nov 1972.
Logan’s Run 6+
From the edge of the Central Gullies climb the major vertical couloir which runs up the left side of the Right Buttress. Very steep and sustained climbing. If sections are devoid of ice, then dry-tool (possibly on the 5th pitch). Near the top of the couloir it is possible to traverse onto the crest of the buttress. Finish up the Right Buttress route, or rappel off – there is some fixed gear. Nick Cradock and Kevin Boekholt later completed the top of the route, eliminating the aid used in the first ascent.
Kim Logan, Pete Sinclair, Dec 1983.
Tingler 6+
The gully between Logans Run and Right Buttress contains five and a half rope lengths of very steep mixed ice and rock onto the Right Buttress. Abseil off.
Dave Fearnley, John McCallum, October 1987
Right Buttress 5 14
Avoid the first 60m by using the icefield on the right. Traverse onto the crest of the buttress then directly up on or right of the crest (crux 14). Then head up the icefields and through the icecliffs.
Graeme Dingle, Noel Sissons, Dec 1972.
Right Icefields 5
Climb through the bottom cliffs which usually have two pitches of hard climbing, then up a sustained shield of ice. There are a number of variations.
Mick Browne, Keith Woodford, Nov 1972.
Alex Palman

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