Damnation Gully

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 44.27059°N / 71.30327°W
Additional Information Route Type: Ice Climbing
Seasons Season: Winter
Additional Information Time Required: Most of a day
Additional Information Number of Pitches: 5
Additional Information Grade: III
Sign the Climber's Log


Damnation Gully is one of the most picturesque and the longest climb in Huntington Ravine. It's the left of two deeply cut gullies on the north side of Huntington Ravine. Typically a snow-filled gully several waterfall ice bulges and hydraulics (water dams) add to the excitement and hazard. It was first climbed by William L. Putnam and Andrew J. Kaufman on January 31, 1943.

Getting There

As for all the climbs in Huntington Ravine Damnation Gully can be accessed by walking from the Pinkham Notch Visitor's Center up the Tuckerman Ravine Trail, turning right onto Raymond Path and then left onto the Fire Road. This brings you to the base of The Fan at the bottom of the gully. From here ascend the snow field on the right towards Damnation Gully.

Route Description

The climb consists of five full pitches of snow and/or alpine ice up to 60 degrees with several short ice bulges. Fixed belays can be found along the gully wall to climber's left in the rocks or climbers's can place their own gear or ice screws as desired. Additionally, there are many belay possibilities along the right wall well protected from falling ice.

The first pitch can be started from a good resting spot on the right side of the gully beneath rocks where the climbing begins to get steep. Follow the gully to a good belay stance at the base of the first ice bulge. From here the second pitch ascends the short vertical ice onto a snow slope to another belay on the left wall. The third pitch ascends steep snow to a well protected bely on the right wall. Pitches four and five follow the steep slope curving slightly along the left wall along Damnation Buttress with the final belay station among the rocks at the top of the climb.

To descend either head right along the gully rim until you lose altitude and can buchwack your way down to easier terrain aiming for the avalanche cache or head left through the Alpine Garden following cairns to the Lion Head Trail.

Essential Gear

Two tools, one 60M single or two 60M half ropes, 6-8 ice screws, a couple of 24" and 48" slings, locking and wire gate biners, a couple of pickets and V-thread hooker just in case you have to bail.