North America, Canada, Canadian Arctic, Kingnait Fiord, Cumberland Peninsula, Baffin Island
Kingnait Fiord, Cumberland Peninsula, Baffin Island. On July 21 Daniel Cauthorn, Michael Friedman, Ben Dobbins and I1 left Pangnirtung in a 24-foot freighter canoe bound for the head of Kingnait Fiord, some 80 miles distant. We spent 35 days in the mountains and icefields northwest of the fiordhead, engaged in some very enjoyable alpine-style rock climbing. We made the following first ascents2: Ningio Peak (c. 5500 feet, MJ 2876) via Broadway (west) ridge, Class 3 on August 3 by Friedman, Dobbin; Allianaituq Peak (6100 feet, MJ 2678) via east ice face and south ridge, NCCS III, F6, Al, 6 hours on August 3 by Cau- thorn, Speer; Muqtahk Peak (6090 feet, MJ 2482) via south rib, NCCS II, F7 on August 7 by whole party; Nuqturhaliq Peak (c. 5500 feet, MJ 2281) via southeast buttress, NCCS III, F7, 5 hours on August 9 by whole party; Jonah (5600 feet; northwest summit of Muqtahk, MJ 2382) via southwest apron, NCCS III, F8, 5 hours on August 10 by whole party; Wildflowers Peak (5780 feet, MJ 3279) via south buttress, NCCS III, F6 5 hours on August 16 by whole party; Upiqjua Pillar (6450 feet, MJ 2674) on August 17 via two routes: via east face, NCCS IV, F7, Al in 8 hours by Friedman, Dobbin and via southeast couloir and west ridge, NCCS III, F8 (with Scottish Grade III ice) in 6 hours by Speer, Cauthom. We made the following second ascents: Nanoq Mountain (6600 feet, MJ 2579) via east glacier and south pillar (new route) NCCS III, F7 in six hours on August 8 by whole party; and P 5600 via east ridge (new route, MJ 2772), NCCS II, F7 on August 15 by whole party. We were the first to attempt technical routes in the region and climbed almost every local summit. We are submitting these unofficial names to Ottawa for approval. We took photos and bearings of peaks in the near distance which give considerable promise for future expeditions. We made good use of ski travel on the icefields and capitalized on the few sunny days of the summer. We were picked up by a Fish and Wildlife Service boat on August 24.
Peter A. Speer
1 Recipient of an American Alpine Club Mountaineering Fellowship Grant.
2 Grid references on 26-I appear after the altitude.