American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, United States, Washington—Cascade Mountains, Mount Stuart, Direct North Buttress

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1964

Mount Stuart, Direct North Buttress. Although the north buttress of Mount Stuart was first climbed in 1956 from an ice couloir extending up from the Stuart Glacier, the lower half of the 2000-foot buttress had never been ascended at all. Not knowing really what to expect, Steve Marts and I traversed the Stuart Glacier and then dropped down snow slopes to its junction with the Ice Cliff Glacier. Though late in the day and because of a possible weather change we decided to climb as high as we could, bivouac and finish the ascent in the morning. The first part was up a steepish snow couloir, which we left to our right to climb a three-pitch slab on the outside of the lower buttress. The climbing ranged from moderate Class 4 to difficult Class 5 and was the most interesting portion of the new route. A number of succeeding pitches, all on or very close to the buttress crest, brought us to the junction of previous routes from the Stuart Glacier on the right and the Ice Cliff Glacier on the left. Darkness found us at a ledge just beneath the great gendarme, and in the morning we continued on to the summit.

Fred Beckey

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