First time I attempted Lyell was in April 1976, on my first ice-and-snow mountaineering trip with John, Marlene, and Michael. We hiked in from Agnew Meadows, first climbed Ritter from Lake Ediza, then continued north to Marie Lakes and tried Lyell's East Arete route. came to a knife-edge ridge that seemed more than we wanted to try. Second attempt on Lyell was with Carter and Prentice on the regular route from Tuolumne Meadows. One pitch of steep near the top wigged out both ladies to tears, but we made the summit without a rope. Looking at the summit register, it seemed they were the first two women on the summit that season, so our trip was renamed "First Babes of The Season on Lyell Expedition 1994." On the way down, I decided that I'd better belay them down the one steep pitcch for their peace of mind. I did so, and when I got down they said, beaming, "That was easy, we didn't need the rope." Amazing what a little security can do, eh?
Climbed with Greg and Carl. Second day of a month on the JMT.
Nice little solo trip from Tuolomne Meadows to Parsons Peak and Mt. Lyell. The receeding snow/ice line made for a few Class 4 moves off the glacier to the rock.
Climbed Lyell and Maclure in one day. Attempted and failed same trip 1 month earlier. Had the whole mountain to myself. Left Tuolomne meadows at 3am, made it to Lyell-Maclure saddle by 8am, off both summits by 1pm and back to the car around 7pm. Got caught by a nasty thunder, hail and rain storm on the way down and hurt my ankle pretty bad so the return was slow.
I forget the exact date. We bivied (me with no tent or sleeping bag, just to experiment) at trail's end, then climbed exhilaratingly steep snow to the top.
zurg and I started the hike from Tuolumne Lodge Trailhead at 5:15am Saturday 7/21, peaked Mt. Lyell (13,114 ft) about 3:40pm, came down passing the glacier till 12,000ft, and continued to the talus about 11,900ft, where at around 7pm zurg stepped on a loose boulder and fell, while the boulder rolled over and pinned down his two legs. I rushed down and together with zurg, used ice axes to lift up the boulder for about one inch to free zurg's left leg, then the two pushed/pulled the boulder further for zurg to pull out his right leg. Fortunately there was no broken bone, as zurg could still manage to stand up and move around. His left foot got swollen and couldn't get out of his boot, and there were various scratches and bruises on his right leg, left arm, and both hands. After evaluating the situation, we decided to continue descending. I carried all zurg's gears, while zurg enduring the pain of limp walking with the help of hiking poles. The two slowly hiked out the 1.5 mile off-trail section, hit the trail at 11pm, covered the rest 10 miles on trail, and eventually returned to the trailhead safely at 9am Sunday 7/22.
Tagged both Lyell and Maclure
Made for one hell of a long day... but well worth it!
Climbed up left side of glacier to East Arete; lots of ice patches on glacier - clearly the melt streams have been freezing overnight - bring steel crampons and know french technique ! There were pools of ice near the moraine.
Fantastic views, perfect day, a bit windy. Descended standard route to Lyell-Maclure saddle. The glacier was in better condition from there (smaller ice patches, more snow).
Crossed schrund via what appeared as the last snow bridge. Peak #1 on JMT adventure.
Went up the first snowfield on the east side of the buttress and did class 4/5 climbing west along the ridge to the summit. Continued down to saddle and scrambled up Maclure as well. The bergschrund is small. Easily avoidable on the west side if one keeps to the ridge or climbs the rock. Glacier has melted way down. One could pretty much avoid almost all snow by staying as far west as they can along the base of Maclure Ridge and sticking to talus. Any snow along here is so low-angled that it's not much concern anyway though. A good, hot day.
Like a river
I'll make many turns
Before reaching the end
Of the journey.
Climbed the NW Ridge with Maria, following the path of least resistance midway up the glacier; the snow was very soft so the "glacier direct" with the massive bergschrund and the steep pitch at the top was not an option. We stayed very close to the ridge line and agreed that it is class 4 at least one point, in a 10 ft. chimney. The view from the top was spectacular. I have great respect for people that dayhike Lyell; even in good conditions, I imagine that this mountain would be a very long day. Lyell Canyon is gorgeous though, well worth the base camp haul in my humble opinion.
I had planned on taking the glacier considerably higher up the summit ridge to avoid the steep section altogether... and I made it around the gaping bergschrund but soon steep, soft, suncupped snow forced me off early, right at the middle of the steep class 3-4 rock.
The rock was scrambled and the summit reached.
I avoided the rapidly softening snow on the descent, heading directly to the col, encountering much stiff class 3 rock (occasionally unnerving).
Climbed with a great team. Glacier was incredibly suncupped, and thus not quite the best snow climb. Left a brand new register up there. The register lives on the summit. Please do not remove it from there.
low snow year. there is a class 4 move.
9 hours and 55 minute round trip from Tuolumne Meadows.
After we traversed the glacier we ascended from saddle between Lyell and Maclure. Bob Suzuki lead us up this peak on a PCS trip.Trip Report.
still lots of snow in the upper elevations.
...but back in ancient days when the glacier was really something (must have extended almost to Tuolomne Meadows back in the 70's, if my memory is correct!). All I really remember is lots of mosquitos at the small lake base-camp. Climbed with wife #1 (Susan Stubblefield) on honeymoon hike!