American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, United States, Alaska, Chugach Mountains, Pt. 6000' of Mt. Yukla, The History of Things to Come, and the Positive Side to Negative Thinking

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 2006

Pt. 6,000' of Mt. Yukla, The History of Things to Come, and The Positive Side of Negative Thinking. After many failed attempts, with several partners, I finally got up two new routes this winter, 2006, on the northwest face of Mount Yukla (7,535'). I approached both routes from Icicle Creek, and both top out on the 6,000' subpeak that’s approximately 0.75 mile northeast of Yukla’s summit.

From the toe of the Icicle Glacier there are three obvious ice/mixed lines on the far left side of the face that feed from a hanging glacier. In the last week of January, Josh Varney and I climbed a steep, narrow chimney that starts right above the toe of the glacier. We third-classed about 700' of steep snow and ice, to WI3, to where the three lines separate. From here a ramp system heads out left, a snow and ice couloir goes right, and a narrow chimney goes straight up. We climbed six pitches up the thin ice/mixed chimney, making one bivy. Once above the chimney we crossed the hanging glacier and traversed left to the summit of the 6,000' subpeak. We descended the Northeast Ridge route and headed down the glacier back to our high camp. We named the route The History of Things to Come (2,800', V M7 WI5 Al). The warmest it got on the route was -20°F.In the third week of February I hiked back in alone (Josh had broken his arm snow machining). After a night at the boulder bivy, I hiked up the left side of the valley and crossed the glacier between the two major icefalls heading for the base of a large ice-filled couloir. The couloir consisted of 1,200' of excellent waterfall ice before reaching the base of the hanging glacier. I climbed up the left side of the hanging glacier and finished with a short, easy mixed pitch that topped out on the subpeak. I descended the Northeast Ridge route. It’s one of the best routes I’ve done. I called it The Positive Side of Negative Thinking (1,800', IV WI4+).

In last year’s Journal I reported the route that Dan Petrus and I did as being the northeast couloir and the second ascent. In fact, it faces northwest and was probably the third or fourth ascent. I also called Little Cub “Little Bear” by mistake.

John Kelley

This AAJ article has been reformatted into HTML. Please contact us if you spot an error.