American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, United States, Alaska, P 10,400, Southwest of Mount McKinley

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1979

P 10,400, Southwest of Mount McKinley. On November 3 Rick Morris, John Peltner, A1 Johnson and I flew in to P 10,400 to try the unclimbed west ridge. After five days of a heavy, wet snowstorm, we began to climb the steep corniced ridge. Protecting with pickets and ice screws, we reached the point where the ridge becomes a face of mixed rock and ice at 9600 feet, where we chopped a small platform; we four slept in a two-man tent. An early start on the difficult face allowed us to reach the summit at sunset for the third ascent of the mountain. We had used all our pitons and nuts and even pounded a couple of screws into cracks. Our descent to our camp in the dark, mostly rappelling, left Morris and me with frostbitten fingers. After a short, miserable night in the tent, we continued the descent, which was seriously difficult while we tried to protect the blisters on our fingers. At one point Johnson fell fifteen feet when a cornice broke, before the rope stopped him.

Michael Fortner, Unaffiliated

This AAJ article has been reformatted into HTML. Please contact us if you spot an error.