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Ice Ice Baby

Tuxy Expedition X Ice climbing 

written by Matt Bourque
 

The excitement buildup and anticipation leading up to the adventure; getting your equipment packed and the beer in the cooler; mapping out of the possible routes with your crew; the freedom of being out in nature; the unknowns and unexpected elements along the way. 

It’s Saturday morning, game time. Your backpack is loaded, your gear’s ready and you’re impatiently waiting for the boys to pick you up to hit the road to your destination.

The approach leading up to the ice wall seems endless as the anticipation builds up and everyone is anxious for that first climb of the day. At the first sight of ice, a celebration erupts between the boys and the exhausting feeling from the approach is instantly forgotten.

 

 As your axe hits the ice, that first swing unleashes a level of focus and adrenaline that makes you forget about the worries of the world. Standing up on the top of the completed climb, a sense of accomplishment gives meaning to the effort and fear you’ve pushed through during the ascent.

Sussex, the “outdoor mecca” of eastern NB. Know for its local ski hill, the area is under-appreciated for it’s hidden gems, especially in the winter time. The Maritime’s unsteady winter climate makes it ideal for the formation of ice. Mix it in with its unique landscape of deep gorges and ravines and the outcome is a diverse amount of tremendously impressive ice formations that stand out like massive ice art. From 10 to 50 Meters high, the structures are breathtaking for viewing pleasures and very attractive to ice climbers.

A great day of climbing is not complete without an “apres-climb” burger and beer to chat about the day's highlights and laughs. Cheers to the next adventure that’s already brewing in our heads before even getting home.

 

Words by: Matt Bourque
Photo's: Derek W. Martin