American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, United States, Alaska, Russell, North Ridge

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1994

Russell, North Ridge. On February 17, Dave McGivern, Leo Americus and I flew to 8200 feet on the upper Yenta Glacier. On the second day, we moved up to 9700 feet and dug another snow cave. We reconnoitered on the third day, sorting out and wanding a route on the corniced ¾-mile-long ridge leading to the base of the north ridge. We left camp at four A.M. on February 20 by headlamp. The snow on the lee side of the peak was waist-deep and we spent an hour digging a path to the base of the bergschrund. Getting across it was difficult, but the crux was 300 feet higher where a 20-foot wall of rotten ice impeded progress. Once above this rime ice, it was a mountaineering classic. The steepest section was a 55° snow trough, 75 feet high. The summit (3557 meters, 11,670 feet) had to be reached over a 15-foot vertical ice wall.

John Bauman, Mountaineering Club of Alaska

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