Trip Report    

Prusik Peak/West Ridge

One of the better ways to see the Enchantments.

  • Fri, Jul 9, 2021 — Sun, Jul 11, 2021
  • Prusik Peak/West Ridge
  • Climbing
  • Successful
  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Pretty much the entire trail is snow-free now. There is running water everywhere. The mosquitos seemed like they came straight from Hell.

2000 Leave TH
2300 Get to camp at west side of Colchuck Lake

0300: Leave camp
0530: Top of Aasgard Pass
0845: Start climb
1345: First team summits
1500: Second team summits
1715: Finish rappels
1930: Back to Aasgard Pass
2230: Back to camp

0900: Leave camp
1100: Get to TH

People: Julia Syi, Mary Simpson, Alex Hatcher

There are a lot of reports about this climb already so this report will be short.

Somehow we got permits for Colchuck for the weekend. And when you have Enchantment permits you have to use them. Reading about how long the climb C2C is (because Prusik is quite a ways into the Enchantments) we opted to camp at Colchuck for at least one night.



A friend was doing it the day we went in, with a late start. At 11pm we saw headlamps at the top of Aasgard pass. We wondered if it could it be them.

Turns out it was. We met at camp as they were coming down and we were getting up at 220 am. I could hear the exhaustion in their voices, but they seemed to be enjoying themselves somehow.

We hoofed to up Aasgard Pass and halfway across the Enchantments, stopping to filter water and admire the views. The bugs weren't too bad, and the goats were pretty chill. We made it to the Prusik Pass without too much effort.


First light atop Aasgard Pass




Views of the Enchantments


The sun peeking above Prusik Peak




Gaining the West Ridge. We went around the rocky hill instead of scrambling over it.

We didn't want to scramble the rock right before the climb, so we traversed across the north side and went up some dirt. This turned out to be the way back.


Looking up the route

Julia was amped and ready to lead the entire thing. The first pitch was pretty easy, but we went a bit too far to the left onto some harder terrain and had to guess our way back to the route. Combined with the increasingly bad rope drag, we ended up doing 3 pitches before the crux slab. In hindsight we could have simulclimbed this half of the climb.


A master at her craft

The crux slab seemed pretty unprotectable, besides the old piton. However it felt quite easy with very solid foot placements. A free-soloist came by and probably did the route in the time it took for us to do one pitch. We had right after the airy traverse due to rope drag again.

From the large ledge we made one pitch to the 5.8 finger crack, then a pitch up the crack (the right-hand arete has good holds), and one more pitch to the summit (the only real pitch I led). The layback flake was just a series of chin-ups, and the chimney wasn't too difficult, although it was very tight.


Second half of the climb


Julia works the finger crack


Mary pulls the final chimney

On the summit the views were amazing, the sun brutal, and mosquitos relentless.


Summit view

5 single rope raps brought us to a footpath at about 7800 ft. We traversed back to Prusik Pass, then to Perfection Lake, where the bugs were intent on committing homicide. We booked it to Aasgard Pass, and made a desperate descent against the light while fighting off swarms of mosquitoes. We got back to camp, and immediately crashed.


Last look at Prusik Peak on the way out


Sun sets as we descend



We woke up at 8am the next morning. My sleeping bad was beginning to ferment from the body odour. We each downed some food and water to stave off dehydration and mozied on back to the trailhead. The traffic on Highway 2 was ever present.

Overall, a worthwhile trip. The climb was solid, the scenery stunning, and the colour of the rocks and lakes were very reminiscent of the Sierras, but with water. The bugs we could have done without though.

Gear: Nuts and pink tricam (placed basically none), Single cams 0.3-0.75, doubles 1-2. We mostly slung horns for anchors. We built a single gear anchor below the layback flake.

PC: Julia Syi, Alex Hatcher