American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, United States, Alaska, Mount Hunter, North Buttress

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1984

Mount Hunter, North Buttress. Finally, the north buttress has been climbed all the way to the summit. It was Doug Klewin’s fourth and my second try. We began to the left of Mug Stump’s start (See A.A.J., 1982, pages 118 to 183), climbing eight pitches up to the base of the Prow. We continued to the base of the Shaft for 17 pitches on the first day. Bad weather trapped us there for a day. Then we climbed the Shaft, freeing sections of overhanging ice. This was the only day of the climb when it did not snow. In bad weather we climbed the next rock band and pitched our tent somewhat below Stump’s high point, which we think was somewhat lower than he indicated, and a little to the right. For the next four days we sat in our tent threatened by constant avalanches and high winds. Once we tried to climb out of the situation but after four pitches we found the spindrift so heavy that I could neither see nor hear Doug only inches away at the belay. We were forced back to our bivouac site after getting to within 40 feet of the top of the last rock band. When the weather cleared, we went for the top. The clearing was brief and soon we were in a storm again, waiting to see which way to go. We bivouacked again before getting to the summit on June 3 and again on the descent of the west ridge. It snowed so much during the eleven days that we lost our well-wanded cache of $2000 worth of equipment at the base of the climb.

Todd Bibler

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