Geurt's Ridge is the major west-east ridge forming the south summit of Mount Olympus. The route contains 4-6 pitches of easy 5th class climbing, interspersed with extended sections of class 2-4 scrambling, and 2 slightly overhanging rappels.
This route is briefly discussed in Falcon's Rock Climbing the Wasatch Range
, but very little information on the route is provided.
One-Way Hiking Distance: 3.75 miles
Trailhead Elevation: 4,826 ft.
Summit Elevation: 9,026 ft.
Elevation Gain: 4,200 ft.
Average Gain per Mile: 1,120 ft.
Geurt's Ridge is reached via the standard Mount Olympus hiking trail. Refer to the Mount Olympus trail
route description for details. Follow this trail to the Tolcat Canyon stream crossing, which will be dry by early summer.
Beyond the stream crossing the trail makes a steep climb up "Blister Hill" via a series of switchbacks. At the top of Blister Hill continue east along the trail for a few hundred feet, then begin looking for a use trail or any other semi-clear path through the brush on the left (north) side of the trail.
Proceed north via Class BW2 - BW3
bushwhacking for approximately 100 yards to a minor ridge, where a low rocky rib comes into view another 100 yards to the north. This is the bottom portion of Geurt's ridge. Continue north via the path of least resistance until the ridge is reached.
The lower portions of Geurt's ridge involve easy class 2-3 scrambling, but after a few hundred yards a high angled section is reached where you'll want to rope up. The likely rope-up spot is a large (vehicle size) ledge at the base of a high angle pitch.
Depending on the ability of the party and comfort with exposure, the remainder of Geurt's ridge will involve roughly 4 to 6 pitches. Most of the technical sections are relatively short (i.e., ±50 feet), and are generally separated by extended sections of easy class 2 or 3 scrambling. There is also a short class 4 knife edge section which some parties may want to belay across.
The upper 1/3 of the ridge contains 2 large steps requiring rappels of approximately 50-60 feet each. Make the first rappel directly off the east end of the step. The second step is located several hundred feet further up the ridge, and is best made off the left (north) side of the ridge.
The remainder of the ridge above the 2nd rappel is class 3-4 scrambling and can be done un-roped. There is a short dip in the ridge (no rappel required) just before the summit block. From the dip traverse left and upwards onto the north face of the summit ridge, then scramble up to the ridge at a suitable location (may be difficult if snow is still present). The summit is a few hundred feet of class 2 boulder hopping to the east.
Descent from the summit is made most easily via the Mount Olympus trail
Approach shoes or rock shoes for the technical climbing portions.
Set of medium to large nuts
Several medium to large hexs
TCU's #1-4 (optional)
Five or six 24" draws
Webbing for rigging 2 rappels
One 50m or 60m rope