From Iceberg Lake. Hike around the left side of Iceberg Lake and up over the Whitney/Russell saddle. There is a trail from Iceberg to the base of the routes on Mt Russell.
As you cross the Whitney/Russell saddle you will see the huge left facing dihedral on the face of Mt Russell. This is the Mithral Dihedral. If you look just left of this dihedral, you will see a smaller dihedral that is also left facing. This is the Bloody Corner. Now, walk to the base just under the Bloody Corner and get ready for some great climbing. The first pitch is climbing up some blocky sections and smaller dihedrals. It is about 160 foot pitch to a good belay ledge and the climbing is mostly 5.7-5.9. The second pitch starts the real sustained climbing in a dihedral. It starts off with some funky lie-backs and finger locks, then you move into an off-width(10a) to a ledge. From the ledge you climb/lieback up a sustained 59/10a corner. At the top of the corner you will go left, then up and around right to the belay under the "Bloody Corner".
Sitting under the Bloody Corner you may think that it looks hard. Hard is a relative term. Be assured that the climbing is much harder than anything on the first two pitches. The protection is good, but sometimes takes a little work. The corner can be done as one 200 foot pitch to a belay just under the roof. There is a great belay ledge in an alcove just under the roof. If you break up the corner into multiple pitches, you will have to set a hanging belay. It is mostly lie-backing in vertical terrain, so it is pumpy, but it feels solid. There are also finger locks and hand jams to be found.
From the belay under the roof, climb around the roof and start to migrate up and left (5.9). As you work around left you will come to a big, exposed flake, then some ledges that mark the start of the mid 5th class climbing. Set a belay. From here you can start to simul climb up around right, then take the easiest terrain to the top.
Protection for the approach. Check the conditions of the Whitney Mountaineers Route to Iceberg Lake. Sometimes crampons/axes are necessary well into July. They are always talking about trail conditions on www.whitneyportalstore.com
We did it in August and wore running shoes(no boots) with no problems. This was carrying a 45lb pack because we were camping for 3 nights. I also did this approach on June 6th and needed crampons, ice axe, gaitors, boots, and lots of heavy clothing.
For the Bloody Corner we brought doubles from Green Alien to Yellow Camalot. Single #3, #3.5, #4 camalots and a single set of nuts. The bigger gear helped in the off-width on the second pitch and would help in the belay under the roof. 60 Meter rope helps, but is not mandatory.
Warm clothing helps when climbing anything on Russell. The routes don't get sun until late morning/early afternoon. Strong parties can leave camp later and climb in the sun, but watch out for weather in the afternoon.
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