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Centurion @ Squamish, June 2013

Its been a while since the last outdoor multi-pitch climbing trip, too much work, rain and probably too many mountain biking trips!

We had discussed two climbs, Skywalker on the Chief or Centurion near Cheakamus Canyon. I voted for Centurion as it was more remote and a less frequented climb, its fully bolted and around an hours hike from the main Cheakamus Canyon climbing areas, topo etc can be found at http://www.sendage.com/climb/centurion-the-outpost. The other thing going for Centurion was the first ascent date of 2013-06-04, so its pretty new!

The approach is fairly easy, from Chekamus Canyon parking lot you hike about an hour up the forest service road, forking left at the orange tape and crossing over a talas field, we took a GPS to ensure we found the crag easily. After sitting out the rain shower we set to it, it led to a slightly wet, slippery start but it soon dried. With the three of us climbing we used two ropes and interchanged at the anchors, this technique increased the amount of time required but we had the route to ourselves until early afternoon. There are some nice challenging sections with great protection and some awesome belay stations with some exposure but not too much :-). I would class myself as a noob as this is only my second multi-pitch so I take extra time ensuring anchors are correct, rotation of the Black Diamond ATC Guide is correct and that everyone is safe when I am belaying from the top or bottom. Safety is the number one priority!

Each pitch took us higher above the road and the unique scenery, I was hoping to see a bear stroll across the boulder field but I had to settle for the views of the Tantalus range glaciers. Its unfortunate that you have to leave after reaching the summit. Its recommended to rappel down so we set to it, we linked our two ropes and took three rappels, carefully passing the climbing groups who are making progress through the lower pitches before finishing the day with the hike out and a quick drive back to Vancouver. As is normal everything we packed in we packed back out and left the environment as clean as when we arrived.

This is a route that will get great reviews and only get busier, thanks to my friends I got an opportunity to climb it earlier than many others. If my UK climbing friends make it out then we will add this one to the list of routes to complete!


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