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Mox Peaks (Twin Spires)
Mountain/Rock

Mox Peaks (Twin Spires)

 
Mox Peaks (Twin Spires)

Page Type: Mountain/Rock

Location: Washington, United States, North America

Object Title: Mox Peaks (Twin Spires)

County: Whatcom

Activities: Mountaineering

Season: Summer

Elevation: 8504 ft / 2592 m

 

Page By: Klenke

Created/Edited: Jul 10, 2012 / Jun 10, 2014

Object ID: 799669

Hits: 3536 

Page Score: 71.12%  - 5 Votes 

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Overview

Note: I don't intend to give a lot of information for these peaks. I'd like the place to remain mystical, something intimidating, something not reduced from hardcore adventure to softcore paddycake. For being so non-forthcoming on information you can drop coils on me from great heights if you like. I don't care.

Overview
The Mox Peaks (also referred to as Twin Spires) are a very rugged summit tandem in the far North Cascades about four miles south of the Canadian Border, the usual access direction. The summits reside on the Mt. Redoubt Quad and are located about halfway between higher mounts Redoubt and Spickard.

Each summit is a member of the Washington Top 100 lists (Bulger and Top 100 x 400P). A deep notch (The Col of the Wild) separates the two peaks, the more difficult 8,504-ft SE Peak (also known as "Hard Mox") with 904 feet of prominence, and 8,407-ft NW Peak ("Easy Mox") with 527 feet of prominence.

Rock is gneiss, but it's far from nice. In fact, I recall Hard Mox having the appearance of a giant heap of slag from a smelter. The jointing and slope of the rock doesn't make it look appealing for rock climbing and it really isn't. Moreover the rock isn't exactly solid (though some parts of it are). The gullies are strewn with rubble and in some ways present the most dangerous part of the climbing (at least for Hard Mox).

If you climb the Mox Peaks, the register contained thereon will be a who's who of Top 100 enthusiasts, as it seems those folks are "generally" the only ones that bother with these peaks, despite their spectacular position and the technicalities involved in surmounting their summits. Many of my non-Top 100 climbing friends don't seem interested in climbing them.

Fred & Helmy Beckey made the first ascents of both spires in June 1941. They climbed the NW peak first then the SE peak the next day.

Getting There

Go up Depot Creek (see the Mt. Spickard page for info). Turn right at Ouzel Lake. Go up onto the glacier.

NW Mox
Turn hard left to get to NW Mox (Easy Mox). Climb Class 4-5 rock to get onto the NE Ridge. Run the Class 3-4 ridge to the summit where the finish is low 5th.

SE Mox
Keep going up the glacier to the prominent saddle separating the Mox Peaks and Mt. Redoubt. Descend a bit, turn left, go east into the walled-in canyon that ends at the col (Col of the Wild) between the Mox Peaks. Turn right to get to SE Mox (Hard Mox). Class 4. Go over the first ridge (Ridge of Gendarmes), descend down and left into the gully (likely snowfilled), descend gully to its mouth where three gullies come together. Climb up the rightmost gully to the deep notch immediately left of the summit tower. Climb Class 4-5 rock in a few pitches to the top.

Take longer ropes for SE Mox.

The End

Red Tape

Canada
Un-Canada
Canada

North Cascades National Park permit? Hmmmm?

Camping

Ouzel Lake has good camping. Buggy.

External Links

Do an Internet search. If you want your hand held for climbs of these two Big Bad Boys, I'm sure you can find plenty of reports that will dumb the peaks down to your level of ability.

Images