American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, Canada, Yukon Territory, St. Elias Mountains, Mount Logan, East Ridge

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1996

Mount Logan, East Ridge. By May 12 Brian Cabe, Steve Mock, Ed Rosette, Ed Sondeno, Chuck Swenson, and Gigi Swenson were all assembled at Base Camp at 2380 meters between the Hubsew and East ridges. Our original goal was to make the third ascent of Logan's Hubsew Ridge and the first ascent of Hubsew Peak en route. Concern over snow conditions on the side of Hubsew Ridge caused us to switch to our backup, the East Ridge, with plans to try Hubsew Peak on our return. Steve unfortunately contracted the flu and flew back out on May 14, leaving the five of us to continue the route. We moved to Cl at 2680 meters on the East Ridge that day. Over the next 10 days we continued up to C5 at 4625 meters, reaching it on May 24 in degenerating weather. Our party became separated in the ensuing blizzard with Chuck, Gigi and I shoveling nearly nonstop for seven days at C5 without knowing Brian and Ed Rosette were just 500 feet below us in a snow-cave after they lost their tent. We had one of our two tents go down at C5 during the storm as well. By no small miracle, our team was reunited on May 30 when the storm finally broke, and we moved to C6 at 5100 meters the same day. A Calgary team had descended for lack of supplies as had another team on the route, and Brian and Ed Rosette had been without food for the previous four days. After a rest day, we left for the summit in poor visibility. Going was slow and we waited over an hour at one point in the minus 10°F temps, nearly returning to camp, before being able to continue above the clouds. With improving visibility, we crossed the southeast shoulder of the East Summit and completed the seemingly interminable summit ridge to Logan's main summit by 8 p.m. that evening. A couple members sustained limited frostbite by the time we began our descent. We returned to the warmth of our sleeping bags 22 hours after rising, very tired but pleased. Strong winds, ground blizzard and much new snow hampered our descent over the next week. We seemed to be the only remaining party on the east side of Logan. Recovering our caches required determined shoveling, but we found Base Camp on June 8, recovered much-needed skis and supplies in the two to four feet of new snow, and flew out the next day.

I. Edward Sondendo, Dirty Socks Club

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