American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, Canada, Canadian Rockies, Geikie, West Ridge

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1968

Geikie, West Ridge. In early August A1 DeMaria, John Hudson and I went to the Ramparts to try the first ascent of the west ridge of Geikie. Glad to escape the throngs of mosquitos and climbers at Moat Lake, we walked down Tonquin Valley and then climbed 1500 feet of snow to the Barbican-Geikie col. From here we scrambled up a short section of memorable scree, traversed along the north side of the ridge and after crossing a snow patch, gained the ridge, which we followed to a tower. A ledge led past the south side of this and two other towers to a steep pitch. John led a corner to the right of the ridge and then we were able to follow a stream bed to the steep section, a 1000-foot buttress, split by an ice gully. Easy ledges left of the gully were ascended for a few hundred feet. We climbed three fifth-class pitches, crossing the gully, ascended about 50 feet more and then traversed right around the corner of the buttress. After crossing several scree gullies, we found a few hundred feet of cleaner, easier rock, which we climbed to a large flat place below the discouraging-looking final 200 feet of the buttress. By descending a few feet down a gully to the right and then picking our way through the steep rock, we reached easier terrain than we had expected, and here we bivouacked. We scrambled to the top of the buttress early the next morning and soon were on the summit. The route varied from the easiest to F6 and one pitch of artificial aid on rock, and from easy snow to ice where we chopped steps. Grade III.

Joseph Kelsey, Vulgarian Mountain Club

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