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North America, Canada, British Columbia, Niut 1, Coast Range

Northern Selkirks. August 1955 saw the Northern Selkirks under siege by a group of eight climbers, including Graham Matthews, David Michael, and Richard Irvin. The initial phase was the air drop of supplies at Tangier Summit and on the Sir Sandford Glacier, followed shortly by the ground forces who, finding their supplies at Tangier seriously damaged by enemy bears, pushed on rapidly to the primary objective: the Sir Sandford and Adamant areas. Sir Sandford yielded to no less than three different assault teams, though other elements found the southeast ridge impregnable. After bad weather defeated one attack on Big Blackfriar, Michael and Matthews, in a brilliant counter-thrust, succeeded in putting a new route on the East Face. In other skirmishes both Silvertip and the Gargoyle fell before the onslaught of the invading forces. The decisive engagement of the expedition took place on the slopes of Palisade Mountain; though well defended by goats almost to the very summit, it, too, succumbed to its first human invaders.

Graham Matthews