American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, United States, Wyoming, Tetons, Grand Teton

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1932

Grand Teton (13,747). Climbed by twenty-six distinct parties, a total of seventy-six signatures being registered on the summit (seventy-one men and five women). Authorized guide service offered for the first time, Paul K. Petzoldt serving as guide and conducting eleven parties to the top.

Nineteen of the twenty-six ascents were by the Owen route; six were traverses, using the Owen route on the descent ; one made use of the Owen route greatly modified on both ascent and descent. To the two routes previously available, no less than four new ones were added this season :

On June 27th Hans Wittich, Rudolph Weidner, and Waldo Peeker scaled the west wall above the upper saddle by a 120-foot chimney, thus introducing a “short cut” in the Owen route and dispensing with the famous “Cooning Place” previously used on all ascents from the west. Their return to the upper saddle was again made by the west wall, a little to the south of the 120-foot chimney.

On July 15th the Grand Teton was simultaneously climbed from different directions by three parties which met on top : (1) Paul Petzoldt and Mr. and Mrs. Fred Wittenberger by the Owen route; (2) Glenn Exum by the westerly of the two south ridges; and (3) Robert L. M. Underhill, Ranger Phil Smith, and Frank Truslow by the easterly of the south ridges. Neither of the south ridges had previously been climbed. A ledge previously discovered by Petzoldt was used by Exum in gaining the south ridge. This ascent was particularly noteworthy since it was made alone and by a practically inexperienced and unequipped climber. In descending the peak Petzoldt similarly cut over to the south ridge and, approximately repeating Exum’s route, returned a second time to the summit. Since then two parties have climbed the peak by Exum’s Ridge, and this route promises to rival the traditional one in popularity.

On July 19th Robert L. M. Underhill and the writer climbed the Grand Teton from the only side which remained unconquered, the north face (see account elsewhere in this Journal).

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