The climb was amazing. Most exposed I've ever been without being roped up. The approach was horrendous though.
9th day of the Sierra Challenge. A nice climb except for the sandy slog up the Rockwell variation.
Climbed with Kevin and mdash all day. We went up the Rockwell Variation (loose scree) and came down the chute by UBSL (very sandy, nice for a descent). I was worried about the exposure all day, and although it was intense for a few moments it really wasn't that bad. Great views of Whitney, Muir, Langley, and Williamson from the summit.
mdash, we couldn't have made it without your maps, thank you!
Thank goodness those 2 nice guys were nearby--I almost went up the wrong chute! Saw some Sierra Challenge folks--lost the trail on the ledges coming back with one of them. But then those 2 nice guys showed up again! Got a bloody palm from a banana-slip fall while running the last bit of the trail. All in all another glorious day in the Sierra. (Except that the East Ridge ate my Garmin eTrex GPS!)
Good rock above the Russell-Corillion Col. IMO the Rockwell variation is the better ascent route. While still a scree sufferfest there are more opportunities to avoid it. First summit this year without thunder and lighting.
Fine climb indeed. Perfect weather. Left too early. Froze our fingers off until the sun came around the bend. Better to sleep in and have breakfast at Iceberg Lake than alpine start.
Fun day hike from the portal. Thunderheads didn't sway us to abandon the hike but we got caught in hail with lightning all around us on the scree slope down. Pictures and Trip Report
Solo trip, first time in the Sierra, absolutely gorgeous, with very fun ridge climbing! Tried to stay on the crest the whole way, ton of fun. Brought my approach shoes, left my pack at the base of the ridge, and scrambled up and down pretty quick. Did the Rockwell variation for approach and stuck to rock most of the way... glad I didn't take the normal sand/scree slope up, that thing would be painful! Camping at the lake was great too for a more laid back wilderness experience. The Fishhook Arete looks awesome, need to do that next! The Mithral Dihedral looks amazing too.. drooled over them.
Fun route. No rope needed. Free of snow.
Had hoped to climb the East Ridge of Carl Heller, but found too much snow. Climbed Tunnabora, Russell, and Carillon instead with Rick Kent. Trip Report
Packed in from the Portal and set up camp at Upper Boy Scout Lake. Three of us immediately set off for Russell. I remember, not particularly fondly, the gravel slope leading to the saddle between Russell and Mt. Carillon. But once on the ridge, it really gets fun. Marvelous 3d Class stuff, but with a chance to gawk at some serious exposure along parts of the route. The small summit makes it all the more fun. Must say I really dragged ass on our descent back to camp. But had to get some rest 'cause the next day we had Whitney to do.
Awesome east ridge. Cliffs on left, slabs on right. Had to detour down slabby right side a little to avoid class 4/5 ground directly on ridge. Exhilerating ridgeline required 2-1/2 hrs of careful scrambling total from platuea and back. Great view of Whitney with a different perspective. Could see people on top of Whitney too.
Beautiful & classic route. My 1st class 3 route after many years off the rock. Felt good to feel the old body move over rock again.
Beautiful day. A little chilly. The diagonal 3rd class climb to the ridge is fun. I was glad to have a printout of a photo (from this website) of that part with me to aid in the route finding. Up on the ridge, the traverse to the summit is casual except the mantle block - esp awkward downclimbing and unable to see the footholds. I lowered my pack off with a cordelette and then downclimbed. I descended the East ridge and encountered a party that had turned around b/c airy exposure on the ridge. Bumped into another hiker who turned around at the ridge. Not kosher for hikers - a modicum of technical experience and sangfroid is needed.
We had beautiful weather on the day of the climb, but it appears the days leading up to our climb where unsettled as we found 2+ feet of snow on the ridge along with ice. To say the least we were not ready for winter mountaineering. Turned around 20 feet below east summit. A great day in the mountains none the less!
Thanks to Phil & Joe. We made a loop starting at UBSL, up to the Carilon Plateau, Mt. Carilon, crossed the east ridge to the summit then descended the south face right side. Thunderstorms were passing just the southwest all afternoon.
Over night at Upper Boy scout. Hit Whiney first overnighted then tackled Russell. Weather was cool and cloudy. The fog rolled in at about 4pm and had some flurries.
Dan's 3rd time up Russell & my first time. We heard a 30+ second rock fall near Mt Whitney. Great views, lovely day.
Awoke to a front moving through. Decidied to set up for success and walk to base. Overhead Whitney summit is enveloped with low level storm clouds. Ahead of me temps droping. Overall sitaution excellent - I attack.
Really, this may have been one of my more poor decisions to climb. Weather really became no worse and after the notch bail option we ascended with success.
Thank you weather Gods!
Excellent climbing. Like climbing the splitters of Indian Creek, only on granite!