American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, United States, California, Sierra Nevada Range, Pyramid Peak, Desolation Wilderness Area

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1980

Pyramid Peak, Desolation Wilderness Area. Last summer I made several ascents on this peak and on a neighboring buttress. In July Steve Iverson and I climbed Pika Crack on the northwest face of Pyramid Peak. This is a crack right of the main dihedral, running to a shallow, left-facing corner above a small roof. NCCS II, F8. In August Rick Scott and I returned and climbed a line in the main dihedral, calling it Desolation Angel. Climb up the main corner to an overhanging crack. At its top, head up the right-hand dihedral to a pedestal with a fixed pin, and up from there trend right near the top. NCCS II, F8-F9. Two weeks later Tom Walter and I put up two routes on the first buttress north of Pyramid. Astra starts on the prow of the buttress at the base of the prominent chute. Climb up and left to a wall with a fixed pin. Move up a finger crack above an overhang. Jams and mantels lead to a ledge, then up to another ledge on the prow. Lieback a flake, stem the corner to ledges, then up the face to the right of the arête. NCCS II, F10. Flondix starts downhill from Astra. Go up the face towards a finger-and-hand crack. Near its bottom run right under an overhang into a book. Stem this into a corner that is followed to the top. NCCS II, F8. In October Ed Coulter, Rick Scott and I did another fine three-pitch route on the northwest face of Pyramid Peak. Start in a short finger crack downhill from the big corner in the center of the face. Climb up and traverse left to the base of a steep corner. Follow this, cutting left at its top to a bowl and another dihedral. We called the route Pete’s Dihedral. NCCS II, F8.

Robert Branscomb

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