American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing
Black Diamond Logo

East Fork Valley, Various Routes

North America, United States, Wyoming, Wind River Mountains

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Author: James Garrett
  • Climb Year: 2009
  • Publication Year: 2010

The north-south ridge between Ambush and Raid contains a lot of rock. A long, attractive east-facing slab two buttresses north of M Buttress, two buttresses south of Raid, lured us in. On August 28 Felix Hörmann and I started at the lowest toe of the slab, near two vertical brown dots on the granite, and 4th-classed up and right to a two-bolt ledge. (We bolted belays while rapping the route, with other bolts drilled on lead.) Son of Raid (1,150', III 5.10) climbs interesting features more or less straight up for seven pitches. Two 60m ropes allow a quick rappel descent. We placed two cairns up top, at the ridgeline, to facilitate finding the raps for climbers descending from Raid, which is otherwise long and involved.

In the same valley, back on July 23, 2006, Franziska Garrett and I climbed 10 pitches (1,300', III 5.9) on the east face of Ambush, starting at the lowest part of the face and ending directly below the huge roof, where difficulties drastically change. We called it Ambush Plaisir; plaisir is a Swiss word meaning pleasurable and casual at the same time. With belay/rappel stations installed, this makes for a low-commitment Winds outing. A week later we established Triple Shot (9 pitches, 1,500', IV 5.7+), which traverses three gendarmes to the top of Ambush. A huge dike forms the letter M at the lower part of an east-facing wall/arête that’s really its own mountain, north of the north summit of Ambush. We started climbing at the far left lower side of the M and followed the beautiful left-facing dihedral, and then the arête, to the top of the first tower, which is part of a huge ridge leading to the top of the mountain.

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

Photos and Topos Click photo to view full size and see caption