February 2012

I am a very lucky person. Sometimes I forget just how lucky I am. To get a little philosophical…we need to step back and ‘smell the roses’. ENJOY what we have; instead of yearning for what we don’t have or what we think we want…

I just got to spend another spectacular weekend with a wonderful group of people. It sort of ended up being an ‘impromptu’ thing.  We had already planned on spending our weekend ice climbing somewhere. Our local (provincial) climbing club UNB Rock & Ice {http://www.unbrockandice.ca/} were hosting their Ice School this particular weekend, and though we were not directly involved in monitoring for it; we were staying aware of where they were headed, so we could head elsewhere,  to give them the space they needed for the 12-16 people involved.

Saturday, we were all set. We headed to Welsford…the beautiful granite cliffs where we spend MOST of our summers, has a beautiful waterfall ‘wall’ of ice in the winter. We actually haven’t climbed there since 2009:


A good friend from Saint John, Lucas, was going to join us. We were stoked. We headed out from Moncton Saturday morning so we could make a mid-morning pick up at Lucas’. My typical routine for an ice climbing day is a stop at Second Cup on my way out of town for my White Mocha Latté.

 Well, {& I blame Kyle for this}, my routine cup was NOT the typical ‘delicious’ coffee. It wasn’t nearly as flavourful as the ones I’ve been making myself at home with my Oso Negro coffee that Kyle gave me. Perhaps I should change the above ‘Blame’ to ‘Thank You’ to Kyle instead…saving me the $5 coffees at Second Cup. Imagine…Ice Climbing just got cheaper 🙂


Off we head, with my mediocre latté, to pick up Lucas for our day of Ice Climbing.  We arrived to a special breakfast treat care of Kristy (I’ll volunteer to drive ANYtime if those crepes are being offered!…yummy!)

{sorry I don’t have a picture of Kristy in her apron cooking those yummy crepes}

With tummies full (good thing we have to hike into Waterfall Wall), we head off. It’s really warm in Saint John…I’m excited to climb in the sun today!

Well THAT dream (of being warm and climbing in the sun) was short lived. As soon as we got out of the car at Cochrane Lane, the wind was howling! Brrr….oh well – at least we’ll see the sun RIGHT? 🙂

We hike up to waterfall wall only to be greeted by less than ideal Ice conditions.  It looked more like we were climbing in Late-March as opposed to late February 😦


Oh well – we’re here and we’re ready to make the most of it. Lucas scouts out a line that will have him in the ‘thick (relative term)’ part of the center line, the good thing about the ‘ice’ is that it’s very soft (snice really) which makes for easy, albeit technical climbing.  He did a great job on the lead,


And then he brings Greg & I up; Greg followed the leaders line, while I took the direct route, which included some amazingly fun & super thin ice (read…gentle kicks)…it’s a good thing to work on.

COMPANY arrived 🙂  Kristy came for a visit …. she even brought her hammock…now we just needed hut booties, a fire and a fuzzy blanket.

Once we rap down, Greg scouts out his own line up the far left…again going for any ice that looks to be ‘thick’ enough for protection.


Another great lead, but what made it even more spectacular is that we got to climb this line in a snow squall


Mid-way through Lucas & me climbing up, the ‘storm’ stopped, and the sun came out again (it was still super windy and cold)…but was nice to feel the sun on our backs


The boys went over to check out the far right climb (Moe), but decided against it. It had some large open (gapping)  wounds in the centre…we didn’t even want to chance a TR on it, for fear we’d bring it down on ourselves…so we decided to wrap it up, and go check out some new climbs that were road side.

Road Cuts, as it’s been called, has been formed because of the new by-pass highway being put through the Welsford area. It’s pretty sweet to be able to park your car on the side of the road, and walk to the cliff in less than 60 seconds. I like it 🙂  These climbs are not south facing, so the ice was thick, and looked great:

We had a blast climbing two of the routes!  What a fabulous day!


We headed back into Saint John…Kristy was amazing. She’d left after we hit the Road Cuts Cliff…and when we arrived she had a delicious bean & lentil soup all made in the slow cooker and fresh beer bread! YUM!!  A perfect end to a great day!

What do you take for granted in your life? Family, friends? We are all blessed with things we forget to appreciate!


8 comments on “February 2012

  1. I try not to take anything for granted. Especially my sweet friends like you!

  2. What a great Saturday that sounds like! It’s great that you managed to make a great ice day out of not-so-great ice. I guess one good thing about there being little ice is that we should be able to get on rock soon! 🙂

    And all the yummy food by Kristy sounds amazing! Something to definitely not take for granted.

    • hehe – yes, I’m concentrating on the silver lining (that it’ll be rock season soon), Dom climbing 6 rock lines yesterday is an inspiration. I was disappointed I had to work and couldn’t join them 😦 OH well… the upcoming rain is a good thing for snow removal right? 🙂 We’re heading to Red Rocks for our spring break, so I’m pretty stoked for Rock!

  3. Wow Stacey! What a clear description of ice climbing and a lovely day! You could write the brochures for the sport. The lentil soup and the bear bread sound delicious too!
    I’ve been especially focused on my blessings lately, remembering to remember them as I get out of bed. It always starts with my family and then goes to home, businesses, friends etc.

    • Thanks Lori…maybe a new business idea for the future 🙂 hehe…
      Remembering your blessings as you begin your day! That is a great start of the day…and helps us to remember throughout the day how blessed we are! 🙂

  4. Hi Stacey,
    Ice climbing looks awesome. There is nothing as exciting and rewarding as a little adventure in our lives.

    • You are so right Justin, and ice climbing is just one venue I use to get out and get adventurous! I’ll be honest, I’m quite looking forward to Rock-Climbing season, as it’s my first love…and soon, it’ll be the time for ‘sending’ granite as we say….I hope you have ways that you find adventure in your life too!

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