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North America, United States, Idaho, Pioneer Mountains, Hyndman Peak, Travis Michaelis Memorial Route

Hyndman Peak, Travis Michaelis Memorial Route. On May 14 Abe Dickerson and I climbed a very temporary ice route on the northeast face of Hyndman Peak in the Pioneer Range. We left a bivy at 10,400', below the northeast face, and climbed a 60° snow cone to the base of a delicate WI4 smear draining from a large snow bowl. The first pitch (60m) contained thin ice, a vertical curtain and spicy non-bonded eggshell ice. From a rock-anchor belay at the top of the first lead, we climbed two pitches of labor-intensive, 60° deep snow on the right side of the bowl to the base of a thin, rolling WI3 slab. The fourth pitch ascended this slab on the left to steep snow, and then thin ice runnels brought us to the crux headwall. We passed the M5 crux in two 30m pitches on thin ice runnels, an overhanging chimney, and a narrow ramp. These two pitches angled up left to a solid pin belay, in a corner below a snow ramp. From there a short, steep WI3 step gained a narrow, high-angle snow ramp. We followed this ramp for 60m, to a point where we crossed the northeast ridge into a steep, hanging, mixed rock-and-snow couloir. The last 120m followed this couloir directly to the summit. The left side of the couloir was a short rock wall and 50'-high cornices on the east ridge; a 10'-high rock rib on the right separated the couloir from the near-vertical north face. From the summit Abe and I scrambled down the east ridge and made one rappel into the Wildhorse Cirque, between Old Hyndman and Hyndman Peaks. A long, tiring slog along the base of the east face brought us to our snow-cave bivy after a 20-hour day.

The Travis Michaelis Memorial Route (1,800', M5 WI4R) is named in memory of our close friend and climbing partner who lost his life rescuing a dog from an abandoned mine shaft.

Dean Lords