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Spokane Mountaineers

Spokane Mountaineers. Courses in ski mountaineering and basic climbing were repeated in 1967. The graduation climb of Mount Hood drew 31 enthusiasts. Members testified earnestly and in depth at Senator Jackson’s hearings on the proposed North Cascades National Park. Our local climbing program was handicapped by late snows and extreme fire danger in the summer. One party in the lower Stehekin Valley encountered 13-foot drifts, while another was stopped by avalanche conditions near Mount Silver Star. A few standard climbs succeeded: St. Helens, Glacier Peak, and Mount Rainer via Emmons. John Roskelley and Chris Kopczynski climbed Chimney Rock in a repeat of Ed Cooper’s 1961 east-face route. The same pair made a fourth ascent of Mount Gladsheim (9275 feet) in the Valhallas. Said Chris of the Mulvey Creek approach, “This scenery is in great contrast to other Northwest ranges. I have never seen a valley so dominated by sheer faces. Gimli I is the brother of El Capitan. The deep blue-green waters of Mulvey Lake are completely surrounded by glaciated horn-type peaks—backdrop to brilliant fall colors.”

Rogers Pass beckoned four times this year. One-day traverses of the Asulkan Ridge in the Selkirks and the Rogers group were done on week-ends. Between tours in Nepal, Terry Bech joined Bill Fix to probe the mysterious Spyglass Snowfield in the southern Selkirks. They reached High Camp on July 29 via Tenderfoot Creek and a 3000-foot cataract. Next morning they finished the class 4 north face of Tripod Peak (8610 feet), a superb survey station for the five-mile long Spyglass snowfield. The 9300-foot watershed peaks behind it are low silhouette, but the névé drains north into a fine lake and a spectacular 450-foot waterfall. One mile to the east our explorers also traversed Spyglass North (8666 feet), an apparent first ascent. Joe Collins, Bob Christianson, Neil McAvoy, and Dale Murphy launched a whirlwind tour by microbus that covered 2200 kilometers in the Alps. They saw seven countries and climbed eight peaks including the Mönch, Jungfrau, Matterhorn, Zugspitze, and Sella Tower in the Dolomites, all in three weeks.

William C. Fix