American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing


  • Club Activities
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1963

Mazamas. The Mazamas of Portland, Oregon, spent their sixty-eighth year in further expansion of their mountaineering activity. In the regular, non-outing schedule the Climbing Committee planned 82 parties of climbers on 36 different peaks. Seventy of these parties were successful, resulting in 1199 individual ascents. The climbing schedule of The Mazamas has always reflected the policy of stressing the ascent of our 16 major peaks in Oregon, Washington, and northern California. However, the virtually unlimited number of challenging peaks in Washington has made our schedule infinitely more varied and interesting. In August a small outing was held at Cascade Pass in Washington. This favored mountaineering site of our club was first visited by a party of Mazamas in 1899, when they climbed and named Sahalie Peak. The climbers this year ascended Sahalie, Magic Mountain, Pelton Peak, Hurry-up, and East Triplet. Dean Caldwell and John Neal completed a new route on Mixup Mountain by a traverse of the east face. A large party of Mazamas and guests under James Craig’s leadership visited the Bugaboos in British Columbia in July. The group of about 25 climbers camped at Boulder Camp on the flank of Snowpatch Spire. Ascents were made of Bugaboo Spire, Pigeon Spire, Snowpatch Spire, East Post Spire, Brenta Spire, Crescent Spire and Towers, and an east-west traverse of Marmolata.

For several generations the club has observed an unwritten code of responsibilities and discipline of climbing leaders. There is no doubt but what this code has minimized climbing accidents. Erwin Rieger, Climbing Committee Chairman in 1962 and winner of the club’s Parker Cup for outstanding service, is now putting this code into written form. As guests of other clubs we have observed all stages of organization from the highest to lowest degrees. In some instances, to be sure, even leaders of our own have left much to be desired. It is hoped that the written code may help to improve and maintain our climbing standards and perhaps be of help to other groups within the mountaineering fraternity.

In the spring the club again presented the annual Basic Climbing School under the direction of Clint Harrington. Evening lectures were presented at Multnomah College, and field trips were made to Mount Hood’s snow slopes and the rock climbing areas along the Columbia River. Over 400 people enrolled, a number comparable with that of past years. Newcomers to climbing receive instruction and acquire self-confidence in handling the ice axe, belaying, tying knots, simple rock climbing, and proper dress. An intermediate school is also held each year. Students are required to assist on climbs and in the instruction at the Basic School. Dynamic belaying with the aid of our belaying machine is also taught.

Jack Grauer, President

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