How many can say they climbed this as their first main Bitterroot peak....?
MTfred19 invited me to scale this peak with him and his friend, and we had a very enjoyable time. It wasn't easy, of course, since the footing was tough and the mosquitoes got pretty active, but the wilderness feeling of the upper half of the mountain was outstanding!
Mike Hoyt's general route is still good, although the "path" in the bottom half is perhaps a bit less defined than his description might make it look. It's not too hard going through the firebreak and the forest, thankfully. I took the "ledge" route right under the summit coming back and found it pretty straightforward - the ridge immediately east of that was actually a little tougher to navigate but no big difficulties presented themselves.
A very nice introduction to a major mountain range!
A great summit with excellent views, once again! There was a lot of tedious hiking on sharp rocks and a little downfall to negotiate but nothing technical or very steep. Maybe more enjoyable on snow due to the terrain, though. Lots of open views along the way to take in, particularly of El Cap and the Como Peaks! Dropped down to the beautiful little pond SE of the summit to re-water the dogs and climbed from there. Took a pretty easy 10 hour day with lots of lounging rest stops, but ended up a bit fatigued in the end from all the sunshine and the terrain! Great day, great companions!
29jun10 - My second climb of this mountain was with a friend and was even better than the first. We discovered the ledges below the gendarmes are passable even when they are partially snow covered. Even getting drenched by rain during the descent didn't dampen our spirits. I will point out that out ascent proved that using the Alternate East Ridge Route is more difficult and taxing than the standard East Ridge Route.
9sep09 - The first time I climbed this mountain was by the South Ridge Route. I descended using the East Ridge Route. It was a great day with a couple of nice surprises - A young Red-Tailed Hawk spent a lot of time watching me climb and got close enough for me to take a few pictures plus the ledges below the gendarmes allowing for fairly easy passage.