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North America, United States, California - Sierra Nevada, Peak 11,598, East Face and Peak 11,830, East Ridge

Peak 11,598, East Face and Peak 11,830, East Ridge. There was a definite allure about the sound of Big Bird Lake; we might be carried off by a pterodactyl, and besides there were supposed to be some good climbs in the area. Greg Henzie, Galen Rowell and I hiked in from Pear Lake to the Big Bird Lake region in late September. Our first climb was on Peak 11,598, which was an attractive 800-foot east face, with a large dihedral system left of center. The lower third of the wall had easier climbing leading to the foot of the dihedral, which then was continuously interesting to the top of the climb. NCCS III, F8. From the top of Peak 11,598 the east ridge of Peak 11,830 looked inviting, rising like a ship’s prow. Galen persuaded us that it was really close, so against our better judgement we hiked over to it, and once there we were soon talked up it. After a straightforward initial pitch, three tricky leads right on the prow took us to the summit block. NCCS III, F8.

Christopher A. G. Jones