American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, Canada, Coast Mountains, Remote Areas Summary

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 2007

Coast Mountains, remote areas summary. Summer 2006 was warm and dry in the Coast Mountains, but fewer adventurous parties took advantage of the fine conditions than usual.

As always, the Waddington Range was the primary focus. In mid-May Simon Richardson and Don Serl spent a sunny week in and around Remote Glacier in the far northwestern corner of the range, where they got up a new seven-pitch easy mixed gully route on the east face of Remote Mtn. (3,038m).

In July Benoit Montfort and four other French climbers flew to the Waddington- Combatant col. They quickly established two new routes on Mt. Combatant (3,756m), one of which featured climbing to 5.11c. Details are not available.

Pat Callis and Dan Davis joined long-time “Coasties” Mickey Schurr and Peter Renz near the Isolation Peaks. Their chief innovation was the pleasant mid-5th class rock on the prominent West Ridge of Shiverick (2,625m).

Ade Miller and Simeon Warner had a productive visit to the Radiant Glacier in mid-August, including the first complete ascent of the Buszowski-Kippan route (1,250m, ED1 60°) to the summit of Serra 3 (3,642m). They bivied on the hanging glacier after 17 pitches the first day, then a second time at the Tellot rim after 13 pitches the second day. Their return to base camp via the Shand-McCormick col was much more complicated and technical than “guidebook conditions” suggested. They followed this with a new narrow couloir line on Mt. Shand (3,096m). The Madness of “King” George (250m, WI3) lies immediately left of the Shand-McCormick col. Finally, they completed the previously tried 200m southwest ridge on Unicorn Mtn. (2,909m), which required a tension traverse to bypass a blank slab and a shoulder stand to overcome a short overhanging off width.

Tom Gray, Seth Hobby, and Ian Wolfe climbed a new line on the south face of Tellot Spire Number One between the Central Dihedral and the indicated line of the Fabische-Waters. A left-facing dihedral to half-height led to a beautiful right-facing corner/ramp, then a chimney broke them out onto the southeast face about two-thirds of the way to the summit. There were two short aid sections; the route was graded D 5.9 Al.

The only other innovation in the Waddington Range this summer took place during a NOLS outing. Chris Agnew, Ben Lester, Ben Liebenskind, and Gaelen Kelly climbed the longest buttress in the center of the west face of the previously virgin southernmost Arabesque Peak (ca 3,030m). They encountered Five short pitches to about 5.6, with good rock in the First half and easier, looser terrain above (One Boot Route, PD).

Elsewhere in the Coast Mountains, the unusual hot spot for activity proved to be the seldom-visited west side of Chilko Lake, 80km southeast of Waddington. A DAV party traveled all the way from Dresden to climb the namesake Mt. Dresden (2,656m) in celebration of the 800th anniversary of their city’s founding. They made First ascents of a couple of other summits in the area and proposed names to “round out” commemoration of all the ships involved in the 1914 Battle of Coronel off the coast of Chile. They also climbed the standard route up the highest peak in the region, Mt. Good Hope (3,242m).

Fourteen-year-old Brandon Schupp also climbed Good Hope as part of his self-inaugurated campaign to raise money to combat childhood cancer. About $100,000 was raised; good going, Brandon!

Robert Nugent, Graham Rowbotham, and Don Seri base-camped at Glasgow Lakes (1,708m), northeast of Good Hope. Their climbs included an easy new line on Kese (3,059m) via the scree and snow of the west face to the upper north ridge. They completed it with a long traverse across the upper west face, to avoid towers high on the ridge. After a move by boat to Farrow Creek, Nugent and Rowbotham succeeded on the impressive Mt. Merriam (3,099m) by its east ridge, still the only route on this great peak. This was perhaps only the third ascent, and the bushiness of the approaches has undoubtedly increased considerably since Malcolm Goddard and Kese made the first ascent as a formidable 16-hour day trip from Chilko Lake (1,175m) in 1911.

Chris Barner and Paul Rydeen returned to their favorite stomping grounds, the Klatta- sine and Mantle areas 40km southeast of Waddington. During their outings they found a fine new route on the north ridge of a twin-summited peak of just under 2,400m high at the head of the valley (Peak 2,328m(?), 7 pitches, 5.7-5.8).

Steve Harng, Jesse Mason, and Jordan Peters spent a productive week and a half in August in the Pantheon Range, 25km north of Waddington, establishing three new lines. After a short route on the southeast face of the Cyclops, Harng and Mason climbed the middle buttress on the east face of Fenris (2,859m, 250m, 8 pitches, AD low-5th) and then the outstanding route of the trip, and one of the Coast Mountains’ summer highlights, the steep northwest face of Pegasus Peak (2,805m). The pair followed a compact rock ramp for 10 pitches, then a chimney, to gain a snowy exit gully (500m, 13 pitches, TD? 5.9/10 65°, 13 hours). On the descent of the south face, they bivied, regaining camp the following afternoon.

Don Serl, Canada, ACC, AAC

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