American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Big Kangaroo, south face, Skinny Start; Going Down Under

Washington, North Cascades

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Author: Mark Allen, AAC
  • Climb Year: 2012
  • Publication Year: 2013

On July 27, Mike Pond and Matt VanBein climbed a three-pitch variation 30m right of the Kearney-Thomas route, which they called Skinny Start (850’, III 5.11). The two climbed solid granite splitters and left-facing corners (5.10+) before heading slightly left into a right-facing corner that eased off into an easy crack system. From here, they trended left and joined the Kearney-Thomas line. The two finished with a 5.11 fingers variation and topped out the wall.

In August, after climbing a nearby one-pitch wonder, Dave Elder, Mike Pond, and Matt VanBein started as for the Beckey-Tateroute and climbed five pitches of new terrain. Beginning on a broken ledge system, the team traversed hard right across overlaps to reach a big ledge at the base of a beautiful open-book corner. They climbed two classic, clean corners—the second through a burly bulge (5.11c)—before continuing up slabs and exiting via a wide crack with poor rock to a belay below a big roof. They bypassed the roof via easy cracks to the top of the wall, establishing Going Down Under (850’, III 5.11c).

Mark Allen, AAC

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