American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, United States, California, Sierra Nevada, Mount Morrison, North Buttress Direct

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1970

Mount Morrison, North Buttress Direct. On January 5, Les Wilson, George Bloom, Ray Jewell, and I completed the first winter ascent of the direct north buttress on Mount Morrison. The first day’s climbing, mostly F7, was the most challenging. The holds were small, the cracks few, the rock rotten, and the rockfall frequent. Hardhats are recommended. Soft iron pitons seemed to secure better in the brittle rock than the chrome- molly pitons. Nightfall the first day found us on top of the crux of the climb, the headwall, a 60-foot overhanging wall. The lead ropes were used by Les Wilson to lead this A3 pitch up the two brittle cracks. We spent the night in belay seats, slings, and tied to small steps. The second day, above the wall we climbed toward the obvious rusty chimney. After ascending the chimney, we rappelled down the other side into a couloir, climbed up to the ridge and along the ridge to the summit. Cold clear weather was enjoyed on the two-day climb. NCCS IV, F7, A3.

Ted Hamm, Jr., Unaffiliated

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