Climbed via the st jean couloir, descended the north slope. Snow conditions in the couloir were variable including waist deep powder, which was like 'swimming uphill', luckily loopperu broke trail the entire way. dom almost took a slide to his doom on the descent, but he's still with us. PICS
Climbed with Andre and Marta. High camp at Red Lake. Heard the calls and rock fall from 2 climbers descending the St Jean couloir into the late evening. They made it down. Climb up the talus and scree the next morning. Some snow above 13,000. Foggy on top so we missed the Sierra vistas. 20 minutes after beginning the descent it cleared. Timing is everything.
Climbed this peak from the John Muir trail while on a 200-mile hike
Split/Prater dayhike out of the Red Lake TH. This was to be a much more ambitious excursion, tagging Bolton Brown and Tinemaha as well--not so much because I really wanted to, as because I just really didn't want to have to drive to the Red Lake TH and slog up that godawful trail a second time. Unfortunately thunderstorms kept me from those other two objectives, so I'll either have to give up on the SPS List (probably the smart idea) or go back another time. The only benefit was that, as a result, I finished the hike earlier than perhaps any other outing all summer (excluding warm-up days, at least).
Most amusing moment of the day was the realisation that the use trail from Red Lake up to the moraine below the Split-Prater saddle was actually a better trail than the Red Lake trail. :-)
Labor Day Weekend, 1988 with my brother Fritz. A long slog in from Taboose pass. We were envious when we saw a hang glider "climb" the mountain in a matter of minutes - it had taken us a few days.
The N. Arete of this peak, our intention, is huge. We kind of bagged on it because it exceeded our expectations of a Grade IV. It's got to be as big as anything on Temple Crag I'll try again with the right attitude I hope.
Split mountain was the third 14-er that I summitted in six days (did Mt. Shasta and Mt. Sill before). I was well acclimatized for this climb. We started from the trailhead at 9 am. Hot day. Reached high camp by 1:30 pm (by the lakes). Decided to go for the summit that day itself. Made it to the top by 6:30 pm. Very windy at the top. Great view. Had to walk some of the talus in the dark (reached tent at 9:30 pm). Had an enjoyable hike out the next day.
Me and 2 of my friends summited Split on the rest day of our backpacking trip through King's Canyon NP. This was my first 14er. The views were great on this very clear day.
I decided to break this trip into two days. I probably could have done it in one but I always enjoy chilling out by an alpine lake for a night before a summit push.
Left the trailhead at 12:30pm
Arrived at Red Lake @ 5:00 pm
For some reason I found this leg of the trip to be the most grueling hike I have ever done. No clue why. I even felt demoralized once I reached the lake. Red Lake is stunning. Once I perked up I had a grand old time shooting the shit with my partner and others up there. We all had copies of Bob Burd's topo with the route drawn on it. Thanks my man.
Left Red Lake at 7:30am
Summitted at 11:00am
Left summit at 12:00pm
Arrived Red Lake at 3:00pm
Left Red Lake at 4:00pm
Back to car at 7:30pm
The first leg up to the summit was mostly scree and talus at this time of the year. There was a good deal of snow on the North Slope and we had to cross some of it although crampons and an ice ax were not necessary. Although there was snow in the 3rd class chute that goes to the left of the notch, there was plenty of rock on the right side of it so we stuck to that. Above the chute it was just scrambling on rock up to the summit. On the way back down the snow was soft enough to glissade or ski down in boots mountaineering boots. I had a good time running and skiing down the snow.
We met a wonderful couple in their early 50s from Oaklahoma who camped out and tagged the peak the same night and day as we did. Howdy if you read this. I think 5 parties tagged the peak that day. 3 of the parties were SPers.
I found Split Mtn to be very pretty. The route is very straighforward and the climbing is not very hairy. There is loads of scree on that mountain, which is a pain in the ass.
Day hike with some friends. There was still snow in the chute on the way up to the N. Slope. The easiest alternative was up the rock to the right. Maybe 3rd class and some of the rock was loose. The view from the top was worth the effort the overgrown, dusty, steep route extracted. On the way down it is easy to lose the trail through the jungle sections as the wrong routes are almost as well worn as the correct path. Not quite as easy as the books make it out to be, perhaps the 5th or 6th easiest CA 14er. 10hrs CTC
Great day; easy climb from Red Lake.
solo trip to Upper Basin. Also climbed Mt. Prater on the way back to camp. Camp was raided by hungy ravens and I had to eat trout for 2 days - bummer
Made it all the way to the Red Lake trailhead in my Bronco. Backpacked up the overgrown, unmaintained, miserable trail to Red Lake. Russ and Tony (speedclimb.com) passed me early in the day and came by on their descent shortly after I reached the lake. I spent the night there, then bagged the peak (first 14er) the following day. Hans passed me at the Split/Prater saddle. The N slope was pleasant firn, a nice alternative to what I gather is usually a scree/talus slog. Picked up my overnight pack on the way down and made it out to the trailhead in the mid afternoon. Nice peak, if I go back I'll probably opt for St. Jean's Coulior.
Needed crampons and ice ax for 45-60 degree ice at base of couloir.
From 11,500 to 13,500 found sttep and loose dirt and rock.
Much rock fall, helmet essential.
I was th eobject of the rescue effort noted in other reports.
200 feet from topping out on St. Jean's I took a free climb detour up the north wall. Don't ask me why!
Fell 20 feet onto a loose ledge...Thank G_d not the rest of the 2000 ft. down St. Jean's
Broken rigth ankle and deep laceration to left arm.
Climbing partner left for help.
One night alone on ledge - cold but no snow.
Inyo County Search and Rescue was incredible.
Brought water and sleeping bag.
Moved me to litter on the third day and airlifted out by Army National Guard Chinook from Pendleton Oregon.
Won't be doing that again for a while.
Maybe will return in spring to use North Ridge route when snow and ice cover much of the scree fields.
No weight bearing until mid-December!!
Boy, did I pick a bad time of the year to do this route. It looked nice from below but was filled with dirt, loose rock, wet remnants of snow and a patch of ice here and there. Climb took forever and I ended up getting back to the car around 6 a.m.
Just a note to support a photo added showing the Oregon National Guard Chinook Helicopter on the rescue meission mentioned by climbers in this log.
I was heading up St Jean Couloir, but a rescue was going on towards the top of it. No snow and a lot of rock fall. I opt for the North Ridge.
The only time I didn't bring a camera and I regret it!
I watched as the Army CH-47 helicopter fly up and down three times to evacuate the supplies and ground crew by hoist . It was very dramatic with it hovering between the peaks. Spent a lot of time watching the action and talking with a rescue guy. I guest someone reported me missing too.
I did the round-trip from trailhead under 8 hours. This was my third time up and third time completing all the Cal. fourteener's. YEA!
Oh, I made it to trailhead in a two-wheel drive truck from the campground. All you need to do is follow the pave/dirt road from the campground to the ranch. Go right to the end of the his fence, then left following the fence line, and another left at the top, and it runs into Red Lake Trailhead road. Road is very very bumpy.
Did a solo dayhike to the summit via the Red Lake trail. Damn that road sucks! Got to watch search and rescue team fly in with a chopper in an attempt to rescue a fallen climber. The climber had taken a fall in one of the steep couloirs the day before and had to spend the night up there while his buddies came down to call for help. The chopper made a number of trips back and forth from the valley to the mountain dropping off gear, supplies, and 4 or 5 crew. I arrived at the top of the couloir (via the North Ridge) at the same time the first search and rescue guy did. On my way down from the summit I talked more with the rescue guys and they said they would probably be spending the night up there with the injured climber. The climber had apparently sustained a broken leg and laceration to the arm. Hope no one got injured getting him out of there. He really was in an extremely difficult location to get to.
Had a long and fun climb from the Red Lake Trailhead. I think the hardest part was making my legs go back down again! We did the round trip in 9hrs.
Day hiked the North Slope of Split via Red Lake with climbing buddies Mike and Alex. It took us just over 16 hours roundtrip. We had beautiful weather all day.