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North Palisade Climber's Log

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BranchWhitneyRoute Climbed: West Chute Date Climbed: 9/5/2004  Sucess!
Great climb. One of the best 14ers in the Sierra. The summit puts up a good fight.
Posted Sep 7, 2005 12:22 am

GlennGRoute Climbed: Northwest ridge Date Climbed: September 4th 2005  Sucess!


Climbed up from the notch separating Starlight and North Palisade. Part of a day hike from South Lake where we tagged Thunderbolt, Starlight and finished here. Climbed with my little bro Curt and Matthew Holliman.
Posted Sep 5, 2005 11:05 pm

Brian KaletRoute Climbed: Clyde Variation Date Climbed: August 7, 2005  Sucess!

Brian Kalet

Was planning on bagging Polemonium next, but got chased off by thunderstorms.
Posted Aug 8, 2005 6:13 pm

travelin_lightRoute Climbed: U Notch/Chimney Date Climbed: June 25, 2005  Sucess!


Fun snow climb. Snow is getting harder. Tagged the summit and the got pounded by a fierce snow storm all the way back down to camp by the terminal moraine.
Posted Jun 29, 2005 1:01 pm

Brian FrederickRoute Climbed: U-notch/ chimney Date Climbed: July, Mid 80s  Sucess!

Brian Frederick

Very fun climb, a challenge to surmount the bergschrund, then hard neve to the notch. The chimney pitches were fairly easy with a minimal rack. One of my favorite summits. Stayed too long and had some rockfall in the couloir coming down.
Posted Mar 30, 2005 11:30 pm

RSN473Route Climbed: U-Notch/Chimney Date Climbed: June 21, 2003  Sucess!


Great Climb! Getting across bergshrund was a bit tricky, but our semi-large group (6) was able to get up and back to camp by sunset.
Posted Mar 3, 2005 2:02 pm

mylesRoute Climbed: U-Notch to Clyde variation Date Climbed: July 1997  Sucess!


Windy, cloudy and cold, cold on top.
Posted Jan 6, 2005 9:59 am

sierratrekkinRoute Climbed: U-Notch Date Climbed: June, 2000  Sucess!


I climbed North Palisade in June of 2000, along with guide Brendon Cusick of AAI, via U-Notch. We climbed Mount Sill the next day.
Posted Dec 19, 2004 7:14 pm

Steve LarsonRoute Climbed: U-Notch Date Climbed: July, 1982  Sucess!

Steve Larson

Did this with Sara Steck on a day off from our duties with the Palisade School of Mountaineering. Swinging that ole' Chouinard wooden piolet into the ice, and a wierd little Salewa ice hammer. A great route. Ice went all the way to the notch then, haven't seen it several years, but form pictures it looks like rock the last few yards. Pity of that's the case, it had a real kick in the pants finish!
Posted Nov 15, 2004 2:27 am

ripper333Route Climbed: traverse from thunderbolt to sill Date Climbed: sept 2004
Posted Oct 24, 2004 5:03 pm

MishaRoute Climbed: Traverse from Startlight Peak Date Climbed: August 9, 2004  Sucess!


By far the best part of our traverse from Thunderbolt to Polemonium. We stayed on the very edge of the ridge that featured some 5.7-5.8 moves. Free-solo.

Click for the trip report.
Posted Aug 16, 2004 11:30 am

Scott M.Route Climbed: From the U Notch Date Climbed: August 12, 2004  Sucess!

Scott M.

After an awesome night camped at the U Notch, watching the Perseid meteor shower, we headed up. Some nasty weather was moving in quickly so we took in the views and headed off toward Starlight. A terrific summit.
Posted Aug 13, 2004 5:12 pm

dabenderRoute Climbed: U-Notch/Chimney Date Climbed: July 10, 2004  Sucess!


Cloudless sky, good snow bridge in about the middle of the 'schrund. From the top of the chimney we dropped off the ridge about 100' and traversed over then up to the summit. This was easier and less exposed than staying right on the ridge.
Posted Jul 12, 2004 2:55 am

SoloRedRoute Climbed: Clyde Couloir & Upper N. Face Date Climbed: June 21, 1997  Sucess!
Fabulous day, from a bivvy near terminal moraine of Palisade Gl. I climbed the couloir direct - all the snow & ice I could find (did not move onto the rock as suggested in Secor, & Roper). Couloir was quite straightforward until near its top where there are 3 chockstones, which gave me body-length vertical ice steps - exciting when one is soloing (had 2 ice tools, & used 'em!). Once out of the couloir traversed up & left on steep ground until hitting the top corner of the N. Face snow field, then straight up to the summit (again, steep rock). On the traverse I discovered an old Chouinard oval with 2 pristine Chouinard nuts slung with perlon - sweet find for my alpine museum.

Downclimbed the U-Notch, which had a lot of exposed blue ice for that early in the season.
Posted Jan 27, 2004 2:00 pm

mtnfotoRoute Climbed: U Notch/Chimney Date Climbed: May 1976  Sucess!
Perfect snow climb, sunny day!
Posted Jan 22, 2004 5:54 pm

GuiltyRoute Climbed: From U-Notch Date Climbed: 10/03/99  Sucess!


Solo from Sam Mack Meadow up the U-Notch. On the descent, I went did Polemonium.
Posted Oct 7, 2003 10:57 pm

PellucidWombat3 times now?!  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Jun 20, 2010


June 20th, 2010 - The last peak of a very long day as Steph and I made a good effort at a Palisade traverse. We descended the E Couloir of the U-Notch in the dark.

September 30, 2005 - Ascended via the U-Notch/West Chute with fresh snow in the chimney! Leading that pitch was cold and snowy as spindrift kept blowing up the E Couloir of the U-Notch. Our rope was too short to rappel, so we descended Clyde's Variation.

September 20th, 2003 - Excellent climb. While the approach was a pain, the climbing from the U-notch to the summit was very nice. While Dirk was more adventurous than me by jumping over a gap on the ridge to gain the summit, I found a nice hole to wriggle through to get there.

P.S. If I had to spend a night on the summit of a 14er, North Palisade would definitely be the peak of choice - there are a maze of cracks in the summit big enough to crawl through for shelter, and there are plenty of goodies (such as sweaters) left in them from previous climbers.
Posted Sep 23, 2003 9:11 pm

DigglerRoute Climbed: W-side chute to U-Notch; chimney variation Date Climbed: 20 September, 2003  Sucess!


Though our original plan was to go up the U-Notch couloir to the chimney variation, my partner Mark (aka Pellucid Wombat) & I decided to reevaluate our options, after being told by everyone we asked that the conditions were awful. Having forgotten my helmet in Oakland, being brained by loose rock didn't sound like my idea of a fun climb. Having wanted to do that particular route for a long time, after some soul-searching & deliberation, we decided to do the necessary thing (as peak-baggers) & do a different route, changing our permit from N. Fork of Big Pine Creek to Bishop Pass.

Next morning we got a semi-alpine start of 5.55 from Bishop Pass, arriving at the W-side U-Notch chute at 8.45. After some mundane talus & scree slogging, we attained the U-Notch. Went up the chimney variation (a lot of fun- wish I wouldn't have clipped into the 2-pin belay, though- would've 3rd-classed it otherwise!). Scrambling from the top of the chimney was great fun, too. Summited at 13.50.

Great views from the top of this amazing peak, with perfect Sierra summer weather. After chillin' at the top, & soaking up the grandeur of that moment, started down at 14.38. Only bummer was we couldn't find the summit register! Nice to have a good partner with which to do this mountain. Great peak, fun climb (from the U-Notch, anyway), & beautiful day!
Posted Sep 22, 2003 1:16 pm

depclimbRoute Climbed: U-Notch/Chimney Date Climbed: August 1979  Sucess!


Made a one day approach to the moraine and summited the next day. It was a bit more challenging with leather boots, smc strap on crampons and a hickory shaft axe. I have repeated the peak twice since 79. It's a classic.
Posted Apr 24, 2003 10:16 am

asmrzRoute Climbed: North Palisade via U Notch and the Chimney Variation Date Climbed: July 18, 1980


Scott Bailey and I climbed this great alpine route from out tent on Palisades Glacier in 1980. I came back in Feb/March of 1994 with Brian Johnson and climbed the same route. In August of 1996, Don Brosnahan and I climbed up the Swiss Arete of Sill and traversed the ridge to Thunderbolt Peak.
Posted Nov 13, 2002 8:11 pm

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