Trip Report    

Vesper Peak - Ragged Edge

Short climb, swampy day

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Road pretty pot-holey. The trail is getting a bit overgrown. Some snow on way to the approach ledge. Traction advised but not needed.

0615 Leave TH
1000 Base of climb
1045 Start climbing
1345 First team tops out
1515 Second team tops out
1530 Start descent
1800 Back to cars

Other people: Mari Simpson, Julia Syi, Cathy, Alison

Some friends wanted to do Vesper as a day trip, so why not. We got dinner in Redmond and made the drive up the night before since we knew it was going to be a busy weekend. The night was hot and humid as hell. I made a big mistake not bringing shorts.

The morning wasn't much better. We went quite slowly due to long pants and stopping to refill along the way. You could taste the humidity with the smoke. I couldn't tell if the clouds made the heat better or worse.


Muggy day


Getting muggier


Nice heavy ropes for a true climbing experience

We saw another free soloist come down who did all 3 routes that morning. Some people are just too much.

We made our way to 5800 ft on the scramble route, then trended climber's right on some precarious slabs to where the notch was, then scrambled over to the beginning of Ragged Edge. People say it's not the actual beginning, but it gets you there just as well. We were third in line, although the first pitch seemed to go quite quickly. The parties who did True Grit seemed to finish way sooner than we did.


Looking up Vesper. The approach is along the left treeline


The rest of the approach to the ledge

Big thanks to the Oregon SAR folks who routefinded for us!

P1: 170 ft low 5th to where you can see the beginning of P3. Gear anchor.


Party at the start


Party on the route

P2: 50 ft 4th class commute to the start of P3. Bolt anchor.

P3: Go up with a leftish traverse to an arete, then up to where it gets blocky. We found one bolt and a fixed piton. I think it was one 5.7 crack move. Gear anchor. There is a loose rock somewhere so watch out.


Looking down P3

P4: Up some blocks then ledges. 5.7 moves are strength based. Bolt anchor.

P5: Up a short crack. There is a bolt 15 ft up and 30 ft up. After the second bolt it's a downward traverse on delicate footholds then rising again to the anchors. Some places for pro on the traverse. Definitely the crux pitch.


Looking up P5


Looking down P5. Glacier Peak looking pretty bare in the background.

P6: Easy climbing to the summit. Stay along the ragged edge for good holds. Pretty run out at the top where it gets heathery.


Summit shot


Team 2 topping out


Party at the top

The descent was just as swampy, but otherwise painless. All in all a good day.

Gear used: Cams 0.3-2, small nuts, 8 draws.

Photo credits: Julia Syi, Mari Simpson. Cathy, Alison