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Spectacular Moderate Mixed Routes In The Bay Of Fundy Area

  •  Three New Moderate Mixed Routes In The Bay Of Fundy

The Ontario-based ice-climbing duo of Nathan Kutcher and Rebecca Lewis have established three new spectacular moderate mixed routes in the Bay of Fundy area. Kutcher and Lewis are members of the Canadian national ice climbing team, and both have numerous hard mixed/drytooling ascents under their belts. Kutcher has also twice won the prestigious Ouray Ice Fest. In late 2016 the pair put up four new mixed routes in the Bay of Fundy area and were sufficiently impressed with the climbing that they returned this winter (2018) to add a few more climbs.

When asked about why they are establishing climbs that are relatively moderate compared to their abilities, Kutcher and Lewis both stated that they enjoy putting up routes that others can enjoy rather than simply creating "monuments to difficulty."  

"We developed the Homestar Wall hoping that it would encourage people to start exploring the other climbing possibilities in the area," said Kutcher. "These new routes are simply a continuation to that initial development."
  •  Moderate Mixed Routes In The Bay Of Fundy

    Cat Scratch Fever M8- in the foreground.

  •  Moderate Mixed Routes In The Bay Of Fundy

    Meow Mixt M7+ and Cat Scratch Fever M8-

  •  Moderate Mixed Routes In The Bay Of Fundy Gallery

    Meow Mixt M7+ and Cat Scratch Fever M8- with a WI5 route on the far right.

  •  Moderate Mixed Routes In The Bay Of Fundy Gallery

    The dramatic cliffline at The Bay of Fundy.

  •  Moderate Mixed Routes In The Bay Of Fundy Gallery

    Nathan Kutcher approaching the new routes.

Route Descriptions

Directions to the areas can be found at https://ontarioclimbing.com/News/The-Bay-of-Fundy-Hardest-Mixed-Routes//.

The area is tidal. Climbers should consult local tide charts and ensure they have plenty of time to escape when the ocean starts moving in. The rock quality on many of these routes is less than perfect. Climbers must use sound judgement before clipping and falling on any fixed gear. More information can be found in Roger Fage's ice climbing guidebook.

Homestar Wall (location of Teen Girl Squad, Strong Mad, Trogdor the Burnanator)

SBLOUNSKCHED! M6+ 18m 9 Bolts
Located on the right side of Homestar Wall. This route climbs a smear of ice to low angle loose rock. Continue up steeper solid rock to the ice flow. Can be climbed only on bolts, but a few screws may be useful.
FA – Nathan Kutcher, Greg Ashcroft and Rebecca Lewis (2018)

(Read more about the origin of the route name SBLOUNSKCHED! at the Homestar Runner Wiki)
  •  Nathan Kutcher on the first ascent of SBLOUNSKCHED! M6+.

    Nathan Kutcher on the first ascent of SBLOUNSKCHED! M6+.

Old Baxter Mill Rd. - 1st Bluff Area

There are several low angle and lesser formed flows before the three significant ice flows which should be visible from a distance. Descriptions are from left to right. Route lengths are to the rappel trees, which are equipped with rope slings. Bring 20+ feet of cordelette to extend the anchors if you plan on doing a slingshot belay for the second. Cliffs are climbable between one and two hours after high tide.

Meow Mixt M7+ 35m 4 bolts +Screws
This is the left major flow. The route starts in a crack below the ice dagger/flow. A smear of ice covered most of the crack on the first ascent. Pull powerful moves on good holds up and right. Clip the fourth bolt and start the committing climbing onto the ice. On the FA there were three good stances (committing climbing in between) to stop and place good screws behind the ice pillars.
FA – Nathan Kutcher and Rebecca Lewis (2018)
  •  Rebecca Lewis climbing Meow Mixte M7+

    Rebecca Lewis climbing Meow Mixte M7+

  •  Rebecca Lewis climbing Meow Mixte M7+

    Rebecca Lewis starting Meow Mixte M7+.

  •  Nathan Kutcher climbing Meow Mixte M7+.

    Nathan Kutcher starting Meow Mixte M7+.

  •  Nathan Kutcher delicately stemming on Meow Mixte M7+.

    Nathan Kutcher delicately stemming on Meow Mixte M7+.

Cat Scratch Fever M8- 35m 7 bolts +Screws
This is the major centre flow. Start to the left of the drip cone at two small pockets. The crux is getting your feet established on the rock. Hard-to-find but mostly good holds in chossy rock lead to smaller holds before a traverse at the roof and the transition onto the ice. During the first ascent, double daggers formed a curtain requiring a long traverse across the rock and then a traverse back across the ice before pulling onto the front. Easier ice leads to the top.
FA – Nathan Kutcher and Rebecca Lewis (2018)
  •  Nathan Kutcher topping out on Cat Scratch Fever M8-.

    Nathan Kutcher topping out on Cat Scratch Fever M8-.

  •  Nathan Kutcher starting Cat Scratch Fever M8-.

    Nathan Kutcher starting Cat Scratch Fever M8-.

  •  Rebecca Lewis rapping off Cat Scratch Fever M8-.

    Rebecca Lewis rapping off Cat Scratch Fever M8-.

  •  Rebecca Lewis starting Cat Scratch Fever M8-.

    Rebecca Lewis starting Cat Scratch Fever M8-.

  •  Rebecca Lewis on the upper curtain of Cat Scratch Fever M8-.

    Rebecca Lewis on the upper curtain of Cat Scratch Fever M8-.

Join the discussion of this and other climbing related stories at https://ontarioclimbing.com/forum/
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Gus Alexandropoulos is a freelance writer who has been involved in the outdoor industry for over 25 years. During his career he has been the editor at Canada’s national climbing magazine, as well as the gear editor for a national cycling magazine, triathlon magazine and running magazine. His work has been published in Canada’s national newspaper, The Globe and Mail, and he has been a guest on television and radio broadcasts. His passion for climbing began in Ontario in the mid 80s and he continues to travel extensively in search of crisp conditions and steep rock.