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North America, United States, California—Sierra Nevada, Two Climbs in the Southern Palisades,1989

Two Climbs in the Southern Palisades, 1989. In late September and early October, 1989, Ron Cappasso and I did two new routes, both III, 5.9. The first was a striking pinnacle due south of Brainard Lake. The crux was an icy off-width ceiling lead. Enjoyable, though sometimes loose and always cold, climbing followed. Further cruxes were a loose roof and some 5.8 hand-and-fist climbing. No signs of prior ascent were found on the route or the summit. We descended to the east with one rappel and loose class-3 down-climbing. The second climb was on the south face of what we call “Dead Deer Pinnacle.” Since at its base at 12,000 feet we found the remains of a dead stag, we call the route Stag Party. On the first pitch we traversed through a series of shallow, marginally protected 5.9 dihedrals to a prominent dihedral one pitch from the top. This was a beautiful 5.8 layback leading to an awkward 5.9 exit, which Cappasso led. The descent was down a loose class-3 gully with one steep rappel off the top and one to the base.

Eric M. Brand