With new snow on every peak in Kananaskis October 10, 2017 felt like the last chance for a solo attempt on ‘The Fold’ this season. After a sleepless night, a somewhat apprehensive drive up highway 40 and an intimidating approach I found myself at the base of the The Fold at around 11am. The most exciting moves of this adventure are on pitch 3 (the crux) so you don’t get much of a warm up. After pitch 3 you can relax a little because that is basically the point of no return if you haven’t brought any bail gear (which I did not).
The accomplishment of reaching the top of The Fold is a fleeting feeling as one must still make 3 long rappels to reach ‘safe ground’. The first two raps are easy but the third station is situated so that you have to swing into it, which is actually a bit tricky and unnerving, especially when you’re hanging from a 6mm rap line. Not keen to make a free hanging rap on 6mm line without a backup, I tied an extra tight prusik and began a steady abseil towards freedom. About half way down my prusik jammed on the thin, pliable rope fibers and nothing I did could loosen it, it just became tighter and tighter. With my knife stowed safely in my pack and no means with which to ascend the rope my only option for self rescue was to escape the prusik by undoing the knots, which caused me to drop far enough that the prusik was out of reach; long story short there is a 70m rap line up for grabs on The Fold.
Video from The Fold solo: