From the top of St. Mary's glacier head NW across an alpine meadow and then drop down into the cirque on the east side of James. Head SW and go around the south side of James Peak lake. Climb the scree slope up into the bowl half way up the eastern face. The climb begins up the obvious, deeply inset couloir on your right.
Once in the couloir, the route is obvious. Follow the snow slope up. Depending upon the time of the year, the entire couloir may be snow filled or there may be sections of rock to climb. The rock sections are rated 5.4 in Roach's guide. The crux of the climb is at the top where a cornice may be present. This can be avoided by heading right onto the rock about 100 feet from the top. The top of the couloir empties out onto the hiking trail running up the NE ridge. Head left about 400 yards to the top.
Crampons and ice axe are a must. Do not use a rope without snow protection such as pickets. The rock sections could be protected with a rack of nuts and a few hexes.
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