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Trip Report    

South Early Winter Spire/Southwest Couloir

May 1, 2016. The snow conditions were good and the weather was terrific. Our party of eight used two 60 m ropes and a running belay with pickets and an assortment of cams, hexes, and nuts.

The upper section of the couloir, above the constriction, was almost completely melted out. This left a unpleasant and hazardous stretch of loose rock that we carefully negotiated. We reached the summit in a little over three hours.

We debated whether to descend the couloir or the South Arete. We decided to stick with the ascent route rather than one with unknown conditions. In hindsight, the Soute Arete would have been the better choice. We slowly downclimbed the rocky section of the couloir, reattached our crampons when we reached snow, made two rappels, and downclimbed to the start of the route.

 

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