Shoshoni Peak 12,967'
The White Knight
Bishops Scepter (5.6)
Apache Peak 13,441'
Indian Peaks Wilderness Forrest Thorniley & Ethan Foster
On Saturday Ethan and I went out to the IPW to attempt The Kasparov Traverse between Shoshoni and Apache Peaks. So named for "The Chessmen", a series of spires along the ridge, and the current world chess champion during its first ascent by Bill Wright and Mark Oveson.
The early bird gets the worm...
Pawnee Peak's East Ridge
I knew a complete traverse would not be possible due to the 5.10+ rating of "The Rook", so we set out to see if we could climb the remaining towers. Ethan and I left the Long Lake TH at 5:15am and made our way to Pawnee Pass. We reached treeline just as the sun was making its appearance.
The summit of Shoshoni Peak
Shoshoni Peak (12,967') was our first goal for the day, and it was reached by way of an easy traverse from Pawnee Pass. Shoshoni's summit was a great airy perch, with excellent views of our connecting ridge. For some reason this ridge doesnt see alot of traffic, but in my opinion it should be a must do for anyone who enjoys scrambling in the Indian Peaks. We Left Shoshoni and began the traverse.
The Bishops Scepter (5.6)
Starting the traverse
We managed to climb the 4 of the 8 towers before we decided to bail and contour around Apache's east face. This was unfortunate as a direct traverse would have been most enjoyable. Even though The Rook goes at 5.10, the remaining towers are no harder then 5.6 with good routefinding. After spending 45 minutes on the Bishops Scepter, we knew the remaining towers would take up too much time, and the clouds were building rapidly.
We made quick work of Apache's northeast face, and arrived at the summit in an hour after we left the Scepter. Hopefully someday I'll be able to lead 5.10 and return for a complete traverse. Even without climbing all the towers this ridge is a great scramble and I would highly recommend it. We left the summit of Apache shortly after noon and made a descent of the Apache Couloir (yuck). A better descent option might have been heading further south, closer to the Navajo Snowfield.
3 hours and a nice thunderstorm later, we reached the TH.