American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, Greenland, South Staunings Alps

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1962

South Staunings Alps. In July and August a Scottish expedition was in the South Staunings Alps, a little known region of Scoresby Land in central East Greenland. It was sponsored by the Junior Mountaineering Club of Scotland and led by James Clarkson. The deputy leader was Howard Brunton, and the other members were Ian Douglas, Gwyn Evans, Michael Fleming, Graham Hendy, Cyril Levene, Keith Murray and Raymond Tanton. First ascents were made of 24 mountains, which included many of the principal peaks of the area. Most of the climbs were of moderate difficulty, but several were difficult or very difficult. The party marched in from Mestersvig to Base Camp at 2700 feet on the Bjornbos Glacier, some 70 miles north. From camp on the Mercury Glacier, a southern branch of the Bjornbos, five mountains were climbed, including the principal rock peak, which was named “Citadel” (6500 feet). On August 1 we moved to the Jupiter Glacier, which leads to the highest and most difficult peaks of the South Staunings. We climbed the highest peak in the area, which we named “Prometheus” (8600 feet). The most difficult, “Eilean Donan” (7400 feet), involved twelve hours of severe rock climbing on the almost vertical north face and a total away from camp of a full 24 hours. The weather and climbing conditions were perfect throughout the expedition. In addition to climbing, we accomplished the first crossing of the range from the main glacier of the Bjornbos system to Damen in Alpe Fjord, 30 miles to the north, by a pass which was named “Main Col.” The results of thorough exploration of the area, using compass bearings and oriented photographs, and of reconnaissance geological mapping have been incorporated in new maps.

James Clarkson, Junior Mountaineering Club of Scotland

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