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Mount Moffett Mount Moffett  by Bombchaser

June 19th, 2008, I landed in Adak, Alaska. The town of Adak is located on Adak Island approximately 1400 miles south of Anchorage, Alaska. I’m an explosives technician and I came here to begin a three month contract searching for left over military explosive ordnance. On Adak Island the highest point is Mount Moffett at 3824 feet above sea level. When I arrived in Adak the entire mountain was covered in tens of feet of snow. When I left Oregon I did not bring any of my mountaineering equipment. If I had brought the gear I could have had a number of possible routes up the mountain to choose from. Sometime around mid-July I decided to have my mountaineering gear mailed to me. The mail moves very slow here at times. For the first few weeks I was on the island I experienced a number of storms. Most of these storms were fairly cold and on occasion the top of Moffett would receive another light coating of snow on the exposed rocks. When July rolled in the storms were milder. After a series of mild storms the vast majority of snow had melted. There was still considerable snow in the ravines and along some of the ridge crests. I began studying the mountain and various topographical maps. I soon found on the west side of the mountain a long exposed ridgeline to attempt an ascent. The ridge comes in from a more remote portion of the island. I plotted a route along this ridge. I planned to descend using the much easier southeast ridgeline. This is the route that past hikers and climbers have used. I’m not sure how much the southwest ridge has been used. I wanted to do a sea to summit climb, and that’s why I picked the southwest route. My work schedule on Adak Island was eleven hours a day, and six days a week. So I would have to hope for a good weather day on my one day a week off.

Aura - A Brocken Spectre on
the Loose Aura - A Brocken Spectre on the Loose  by Gangolf Haub

Common Sense dictates that you take a slow approach during your first outing after having spent half a year behind the computer screen. However, with me common sense is a poor dictator, which can be observed every year in September as we (girlfriend Judith and I) try to recover from our first vacation day after having returned from one of our epic first day enterprises.

However, there are more serious dictators than common sense, weather being one of the most serious ones. In September 2008 a Sunday of on-and-off rain forced us to stay in the valley – Upper Vinschgau or Val Venosta Alta. We managed 15km and 800m of altitude and got drenched several times. So the epic was spared for the second day – or was it? Upon our arrival we had lunched at the shore of Reschensee / Lago di Resia and while doing so had observed a long but easy looking ridge on the opposite side of it: it connects Piz Lad in the north with Äußerer Nockenkopf / Dosso di Fuori in the south and has two more summits in between: Piz Nair and Jochgrubenkopf / Piz Russenna. And that’s where we decided to spend day two this year.

Earl Peak and Iron Peak Earl Peak and Iron Peak  by EastKing

With the calls of iffy weather on the western side I had a strong desire to head east to the Teanaway Region. Jason and Fran were head off to Malcolm Mountain so I luckily talked them into dropping me off a little up the road so that I could do Iron Peak. So how did Earl Peak involved here. Well after looking at the map I felt this strange confidence to do both. I knew I was going to have to be quick and not mess around on any summit, because both of these mountains are larger and tougher than Malcolm Mountain.

My experience on the
Matterhorn My experience on the Matterhorn  by mvs

Whew. Now for the somewhat intimidating final climb. After the fixed ropes we felt "naked" on this high roof of the world. We kicked steps in the snow carefully and sometimes found a metal bar to wrap the rope around. We passed a statue of Saint Benedict (?) right below the summit, and tiredly (for me anyway) climbed to the high level ridge that marks the Swiss summit. Wow. It had been a big climb. Normally we shake hands heartily. This time Theron gave me a big ol' hug. "Congratulations man!"

How Not to Hike the Grinnell
Glacier Trail How Not to Hike the Grinnell Glacier Trail  by silversummit

This article is based on a hike I took with a group, Sunday, July 31st, 2005 on Grinnell Glacier Trail, Glacier National Park; a 11 - 12 mile roundtrip hike considered by most to be moderate in difficulty. The actual writing was prompted by reading Tim Sharp’s insightful “Mutiny on Gray Wolf Peak” found here on SummitPost.

climbing Tannheimer climbing  by mvs

Josef and I were tired of the cold, rainy weather hanging over the northern alps for so many weeks. We had a clearing forecast for Saturday, so we drove out to the Tannheimer Mountains where we hoped for snow-free rock climbing in the sun. Everything "interesting" above 1800 meters or so seemed to be snowcovered, and it was unseasonably cold for September.

We wanted to combine the Schusterführe Route with the upper part of the Südpfeiler. That would be provide 8 pitches, several of which would be pretty hard for us (grade VI+, or about 5.10b YDS). We climbed the first two pitches without trouble, but even as the weak sun was warming us up, clouds came streaming in from the west. Josef tried to puzzle out grade VI traversing moves on the third pitch even as I was shivering at the belay. He gave up, so I went to try, but got stuck at the same place. Now my fingers were frozen and going numb. Curses!

my California 14ers Finishing my California 14ers  by jimegan

At 1 am on 9/26/08, Mike Brooks and I left Las Vegas heading to Big Pine, CA to attempt my final two California 14ers. A month previously we had done a highly successful trip to Dusy Basin and climbed three of the most difficult peaks in the Palisades and it looked like this could be the final chance to reach my goal before winter hits the mountains.

We reached the trailhead at Glacier Lodge about 6:30 am after stopping and securing a campsite nearby and headed up the N Fork of Big Pine creek. Since we were attempting to complete the climb as a day hike, this approach seemed the most likely to result in success. It has been estimated that this route which goes by Sam Mack meadows and up the Glacier Notch is about 20 miles roundtrip and over 6,600’ elevation gain.

Minaret Traverse in Two
Days Minaret Traverse in Two Days  by lavaka

My friend Booth had just finished his Dental school entrance exams, and was coming down from Seattle to LA for a few days. I was taking Thur and Fri off from work for climbing, and then we'd meet college friends in San Francisco on the weekend. We didn't have two full days because our plan was to pick up my girlfriend from SFO on Friday night (in retrospect, not our best idea).

So my question: what to climb with Booth? It was easy to narrow it down to ridges. We are both technical climbers, but are far from being Astroman-capable hardmen, so we never gave second thought to routes like "Positive Vibrations" and its ilk. And since Booth grew up in the Cascades, he doesn't think much of our quaint Sierra snow and ice routes. Ridges are the only type of route that fit our style well. Booth has uncanny scrambling abilities and is comfortable with loose rock, while I... I take a lot of pictures, so that I have an excuse whenever Booth tells me to hurry up.

The Truro
Group: Not Your Typical Sawatch Slog The Truro Group: Not Your Typical Sawatch Slog  by shknbke

With summer scrambling season drawing to a close, we were looking to squeeze in one more long day before significant snow comes. We tossed around a few ideas late in the week and came up with a group of 13ers in the Sawatch west of Indy Pass near centennial Grizzly. These peaks are relatively unheard of, but they are not your typical Sawatch talus heaps. These peaks offer some fine scrambling, although there is some loose rock to deal with. These gems reminded me more of scrambling in the Elks, although not quite so loose.

We met late Friday evening and car camped along the Lincoln Creek road where Galena Creek meets Lincoln Creek at 10960' north of Grizzly Reservoir. I arrived just 20 minutes before Pete and Dominic while Sarah already hit the sack after hitting Silver King and 13462 earlier in the day. This is the same drainage that is used to access Grizzly. The road is suitable for 2WD to Grizzly Resorvoir, but beyond that you will need 4WD. It is a pretty mellow 4WD road and my Santa Fe did fine.

Henrys Fork + Cliff Point :
One busy day Henrys Fork + Cliff Point : One busy day  by Moogie737

Leaving Cottonwood Heights in Salt Lake City at 4 a.m. sounds crazy, and maybe it is. But with a solid 2.5+ hours of driving just to reach the Henrys Fork TH ahead of us, we had to plan so as to reach the beginning point of the hike shortly before sunrise. We made it. Total actual driving time was two hours and thirty-five minutes, and we were not slacking when it came to holding the speed limit. The oil-covered dirt/gravel roads south of Mountain View were startlingly drivable.

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