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North America, United States, Washington, Ascents in the Cascades

Ascents in the Cascades. In the spring of 1957 we completed some interesting new routes. On the sheer face of Castle Rock in Tumwater Canyon, which rises several hundred feet above the main highway near Leavenworth, Washington, Fred Beckey, John Rupley, and Klindt Vielbig did the "Saint Route,” which involved some very difficult balance and direct-aid climbing on a part of the wall previously considered impossible. Fred Beckey, Dave Collins, and I did a new route, called "The Canary” because of the yellow coloration of the rock. It involved some very delicate 5th and 6th class climbing, taking about 25 pitons and two bolts. The route went up a very steep slab to a corner. Above this was a nearly vertical direct-aid pitch which led onto another platform. I took the next lead, which was crucial. It was necessary to work out to the outer edge of an overhang and work up a very precipitous and airy wall, which required two bolts. After getting up the worst, I came back and Dave Collins finished it off. Beckey, Rupley, and I did a variation of "The Catburglar,” a delicate balance-climb. In May, Beckey, Rupley, Fred Ayres, and I made a new route in the Cashmere Crags on Prussik Peak, so called because of Beckey’s rope-throw on the first ascent. We were lucky to find an easier way up the west ridge, though it required some class 3, 4, and 5 climbing; Rupley led the crucial 15-foot class 5 jam-crack. We also made another ascent of the overhang-studded Boxtop.

Don G. Claunch