My friend Tony Symanovich and I obsessed over this thing for a couple summers. After some early season training runs we were ready to tackle it.
At 730pm we left the Devil's Postpile trailhead. We arrived at Minaret Lake at 1030pm and discovered there was a ton of snow.
The next morning we headed out at 3 or so and cramponed up to the left of michael minaret into a notch. From there we circled to Amphitheater Lake. We headed up the SW face of Clyde and ditch are packs at the Ken Clyde notch. From the we navigated the 5th class ridge over to the rad summit of Ken along with it's wonderfully primitive summit register. We didn't dawdle to much and retraced our steps, grabbed our packs, and headed onto the summit of Clyde which we had both been on a couple of times before. From there we headed over to Eichorn, encountering one extremely exposed section featuring a scary deadpoint move with plenty of air at your feet.
At this point the ridge split. We decided to drop our packs and tag Michael before any thing else. A bit of simul climbing later brought us to Michael's summit, and then after a rappell we were headed over to Eichorn.
At that point I realized I had unfortunately forgot the rack on Michael's summit. So I reclimbed Michael and rapped again. Silly. We then easily tagged Eichorn. Unfortune struck again when a large choss block decided to dislodge and roll over my hand. Luckily I just got a really bloody gash.
We headed on and tagged Rice and Bedayn- kind of a blur. Bedayn had a short steep 5.8ish section. Some where along the line I lost one of my approach shoes, which would prove to suck alot and provide quite a bit of entertainment in the near future.
We went onto Dawson via an easy 5th class route. At that point it was getting late and we were just about out of water. So we got off Dawson, went down a choss chute and found a good water source. We found a sweet bivy spot too and called it a day. We had decided to forgoe sleeping bags in the name of "style" and being fast and light so we had a pretty frigid night.
The next morning we went back up the choss chute and climbed Dyer. We realized our lack of sleep had gotten the best of us when we looked in the summit register and noticed we we had reclimbed Dawson- darn. After descending Dawson again we headed over to the real Dyer and fired it off. The summit was rad- and not very big.
Onto Jensen. We chose a chimney on the west side that ended up being 5.6ish or so. Near the summit there was some steep sections. At one point I ripped a basketball size block out on a verticle wall. Fortunately the other hold I was on was solid so I didn't fall into the void.
We headed over to Turner uneventfully. A rappell and a badass easy 5th class ridge got us to Leonard. We sent.
Instead of going to the Gap we did a rappell directly to the glacier and made our way back across snow back to Minaret Lake. This all sucked pretty bad considering I was wearing one climbing shoe.
For some reason we tried to go around the otherside of Minaret Lake than we had come, which was especially annoying since it wasted an hour or so and we were worked. We slept. The next morning we hiked out.
We ended up doing maybe 10 rope pitches and 10 rappells. There was some choss and some great rock. A great adventure with some obscure summits.
- Ian Cotter-Brown