American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, United States, Washington—Cascade Mountains, Columbia Peak, South Ridge

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1966

Columbia Peak, South Ridge. This often-climbed peak in the famous Monte Cristo area has a spectacular mile-long, steep-walled South Ridge that is probably photographed by nearly every party to climb the mountain. On September 12, from a high camp 1½ miles south of Poodle Dog Pass, Ursula Weiner and I continued south in darkness on the fisherman’s trail over Twin Peaks and down to Twin Lakes for an early morning breakfast in thick wet fog. By compass we located the subsidiary ridge southeast of the upper lake, and climbed easterly until we broke through the fog at 5900 feet to behold for the first time that long, magnificently broken, unclimbed South Ridge. After a short rest and time out for picture-taking, we roped up and proceeded to enjoy seven hours of ridge shinnying, way-down views, and good class 3 and 4 rock scrambling. Descent was by the conventional west ridge route behind a support party of friends who had reached the summit three hours earlier.

Kenneth Carpenter

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