Mt. Huntington, Harvard Route, Ascent, and Possible New Variation. On May 8-10, Joe Puryear and I climbed the Harvard Route on Mt. Huntington’s west face. To begin the route, we climbed a possible minor variation on the west face that most likely was unclimbed. This variation involved climbing the initial 700-foot snow face used to approach the Nettle-Quirk route, following in the steps of a party who had started that route a few hours earlier. At the point where this face meets a steep rock wall and the Nettle-Quirk approach jogs left, we made a 400-foot horizontal traverse to the right across exposed snow and ice slopes and into an obvious, moderately steep ice couloir capped by a cornice. We climbed this 400-foot couloir. Behind the cornice, we joined the Harvard Route atop the second pitch of the “Spiral.” By avoiding the two difficult pitches of the Spiral, this indirect but straightforward variation saved us much time. We reached the summit ridge on the second day, but due to poor weather and visibility did not climb the final 300 feet of corniced ridge.
Mark Westman, unaffiliated