Climbed the route with Scott and Pavel. Sections of this ridge seem to be more like class 5 than 4. We used a rope only for a couple of short rappels. A lot of exposed climbing required being constantly focused and careful about every move. Climbing it in a day would require an extra ordinary fitness level. Kudos to ScottyS for an excellent route description!
Rick and I left Anvil Camp in the morning and headed up to Shepherd Pass. From the pass, I headed toward Williamson Bowl while Rick started off on his own agenda for another one of his death marches.
The bowl was no big deal - much easier (and less tedious) than I'd expected...maybe an hour and twenty across it.
Not bringing much in the way of a route description, I got hung up at the base of the west face, not sure which chute to ascend. With a little help from Rick in the form of radio contact while he was on the summit of Tyndall, I finally got into the correct chute (the other one turned out to be the Bolton Brown chute). Seeing a figure coming up below, I realized that it was my friend Luba and decided to wait for her to catch up. Having no idea the other was going to be there, we decided to pair up and head for the summit together. We hit the summit awhile later.
As we were descending the chimney, we bumped into Eric. A short time later, we also ran into some maniac dayhiking the peak. I later found out the maniac was Kalet.
Good time. Perfect weather. Talked to some cool people.
Hauled the gear up from Anvil camp to the Pass, then at 9am took off for the summit of Williamson. Williamson Bowl is definately a killer, especially with a bit of soft slushy snow impeding progress. Made the summit a little after 12 and then back to the pass where I camped out. Crampons and axe were very useful i the chute, and pretty much everyone had them. About 50% snow coverage in the bowl.
Dayhike form Shepherd's Pass Trailhead.
Very hard (mentally) and committing route. Climbed with Kris and Scott - great job!
With Kris and Pavel. Secor got this one right: "...one hell of a hard climb."
This route is for machines only. I am pretty good shape myself and got seriously owned. Climbed with poorboy44 - not only did he have bronchitis during our ascent (probably the first ascent of Williamson with bronchitis, even more amazing was it was the NE ridge noless) but I was trailing him the whole way. This route has many sections of class 4/5 with serious exposure. My highlight was climbing into a little "bind" which I could not back-climb out of. poorboy44 was 200 ft above me and not about to come down and help me out. I was above a snow chute by about 40 feet. I dropped my pack (which fell ~300 ft down the chute), down climbed 10-15 feet, and then took a leap of faith down into the snow chute. It was the most air I have ever gotten in my life. Anyway, climbed and signed the West horn and then the East horn before making the summit. Great climb and ready to go back to get Tyndall. hat's off to the two men who did this route as a day trip - true machines if I ever heard of any.
Great long route! We brought a 7mm rap line but did not use it. Followed the SP description and found it to be excellent. Descended the West Face, still a lot of snow but we managed with tennis shoes and axes. Hats off to those who do this climb car-to-car in a day!
Reached the summit of Mt. Williamson via the West Face Route at 11:00 AM from a camp at Shepherd's Pass. There is snow in the chute above the black stains to within 100' of the 3rd class chimney that leads to the summit plateau. Plan to use your ice axe & crampons. Several parties trying to summit from Anvil Camp were turned back - there is a lot of snow on the trail above Anvil and it is hard to find in the dark - advise a camp above Shepherd's Pass. Yes, it's a long, hard hike! Plan to leave the 6,200' trailhead EARLY to avoid heat and make the pass. Stream crossings are tricky, but doable.
Incredible weather - warm all the way to the summit. Skied from the summit to snowline - around 8600' solo. First few thousand feet is tortuous, sandy especially carrying skis, but all of it above snowline is wonderful.
Great climb -- perfect day. Friend opted not to go to the top but met Jeff from Long Beach (city next to mine) -- small world. George Creek is truly the classic bushwack -- had to be done once (although maybe next year to climb Barnard). Didn't see soslaw (below) & Jim at the top but saw them crossing Williamson basin on the way back to Shepherd
Climbed with Jim under the finest Sierra blue bird skies. Snow in the Williamson bowl and the west face coulior made for ideal conditions. Literally a snow ramp to the base of the chimney. A lttle over 3 hours round trip from the bowl. Summit register buried in snow. Spent an half hour on the summit enjoying a 100 mile panarama of snow laden peaks, valleys and bowls.
It's such a heavy snow year, had to climb both brush-heavy routes while snow smashed down my nemesis. Heavy snow made it possible to dayhike each of the routes using only daylight hours. I love snow!
Great route. Don't try to glissade the chute in late summer though folks!
Climbed solo from Shepard's Pass - very good climb.
With my brother , Fritz, via Shepherd Pass, and base camp between Williamson and Tyndall. Met some guys on the peak we had met on Mt. Langley previous labor day. Unfortunately, they knocked down a rock that went zooming down the middle of the chute while we were descending. They yelled and I got out of the way just in time to see it zipping by, then I had to yell down at my brother 3-4 times before he heard me, since he was so far ahead of me. Whew! This was a really memorable mountain.
Fun chimney; we got an early start to avoid the unsettled weather; summitted with Balaji, Tom, Sundhi, and K-Balls.
Arnie Coleman and I summited on July 15th via the usual slog across Williamson Bowl from the upper lake above Shepherd Pass, our friend Chip made it up to the chimney at the top of the chute. The chute was much more unstable than expected, and we mostly stuck to climbing on the better rock on the right side of the chute. The chimney, while posing no real problems, got the heart racing at 14,000 ft (are you guys sure that's not Class 4, one slip and you're . . . ). Both Arnie and I squeezed under the chockstone with day-packs on.
We looked for the summit register, even though it had been previously noted that it was missing. It appears that people have been taking out their frustration on the USGS Summit Marker, because the thing is really beat up. The climb down was uneventful, but makes your quads scream the next morning.
We tried Mt. Tyndall the next day, but only got half way up due to apathy and closing weather. We're going to have to go back up Shepherd Pass, damn. Also, how anyone could camp at Anvil Camp with all those mosquitos is beyond me (we camped above the Pothole . . . nice).
We hiked out on Saturday, July 17th, just ahead of a huge super-cell thunder storm that enveloped the eastern sierra from Cottonwood Lakes to the Palisades and knocked the power out in Lone Pine.
I hope grandpa made it out OK.
Very LONG approach! Was a tough one for me. Got sick due to altitude, but somehow suffered through the headache. Chimney near top was the most fun part. Very little snow on the entire route. Mountaineer's route on Mt. Sill (did it last year) was more fun I thought - start at about 6000ft, 8 mile hike in to camp at 12K feet, then a class 3-4 route to the summit, some glissading on the way down.
Wow, what an epic workout. Today I climbed Mt. Williamson in a day trip. My GPS said that Shepherd Pass trail (from trailhead to entry to Sequoia National Park) is 10.29 miles.
Just below Shepherd Pass is some snow to cross in a steep shoot. There are foot steps dug in and I crossed without crampons or poles.
Nearer the summit, there is snow in a shoot about .2 below the class 3. Rocks on the right of the snow may be used to go around it. I imagine the snow is there year around.
Facing the class 3 "cliff", I took the steep class 3 "crack" on the left (without a rope, the way to the right seemed unsafe). I pulled up on rocks in the cracks and slipped under the rock near the top. Although it seemed pretty scary as I started, it turned out to be done in a few minutes with no fear. I also came down the same way and there was no problem-just one step at a time.. wedging with hands, arms, shoulders and hips and gripping and there were no problems.
See my very detailed Trip Report for this climb:
"West Face of Mt. Williamson in a day trip from Shepherd Pass Trailhead"