American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, United States, Idaho, Chimney Rock, Selkirk Crest

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1992

Chimney Rock, Selkirk Crest. On August 19, Ann Robertson and I made the first ascent of a new three-pitch route on the north side of Chimney Rock. The first lead was a superb 5.10c crack system that split the middle of an obvious prow just a few feet left of Greymatter. The crux was a 4-inch roof near the top of the lead just three feet from the Greymatter dihedral. The second pitch was of continuous A2 up a very thin seam that burst into an off-width after 40 feet. Because Ann did not want to jümar the second lead, I fixed a bomber second- pitch anchor, then clipped my 180-foot rope through it and ran out the third 100-foot lead to the top. On the third pitch, I turned progressively easier roofs (5.9+, 5.9,5.8). When I tried to pull up the rope to rappel, Ann accidentally left a knot on her end, making the rope jam through my second-pitch belay. Since the rope had logged over 100 leader falls, I left it, as well as my second rope as Ann and I rappelled off. Ann was hypothermic by the time I reached her and when we reached the ground, she vomited repeatedly. We left the retired ropes hanging and hiked out to the car. Karl Birkinkamp cleaned my mess for me. I am very grateful to him. I did not want to trash out a climbing area where I was just a visitor, but I just had to get my partner off.

Cameron M. Burns

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