#1: October 1, 2005 - via Southwest Chute #1. Fresh snow and high winds made us turn back 200' below the summit.
#2: July 14, 2006 - Previous day's climb with Vlad Sofiyev took 'longer' than expected. We accidentally did a new route on the N Face of Mt Agassiz. Doh!
#3: March 28-30, 2007 - My canister stove failed and Mark Strahan's white gas stove failed at 3rd Lake. Doh!
#4: September 5-7, 2009 - via N Couloir with Jonathan Bye and Henry Steinberg. Bergschrund was a challenging brittle water ice on alpine ice climb, but a memorable lead. Took longer than expected due to the ice and my friends decided they didn't like the idea of sleeping on the ridge, so we bailed down the SW Chute #1 after finishing the route. Doh!
#5: June 19-21, 2010 - Made it to the summit block with Steph Abegg on our attempt at the Palisade Traverse. We were running late and couldn't get the rope on the summit block any better than slinging a bolt pin during our agreed 10 minute time limit, so we had to move on. I'll be back for the summit block another day!
#6: July 19, 2010 - Climbed the summit block with Vitaly after climbing the NW Ridge. What an outing!
Got my 8.2 mm stuck tossing it over the SW side of the summit block, but after an hour of work it flipped free by happenstance to the correct orientation and I prussiked to the summit. No register that I could find. That 3rd stripped bolt needs to go.
Part of a Thunderbolt - Polemonium traverse, although we ran out of time for Pole... Thunderbolt was much easier than expected, not sure why its rated as one of the harder 14ers, I suppose just 'cause of the summit block. Climbed the summitblock on toprope, thought it was a straightforward boulder problem...
The last of 3 with Peter Doucette. Ran out of time and bailed without tagging Polemonium. Turned out to be a wise decision as I was running on empty and it took 15 hours before we got back to the trailhead.
Technically: Easier than I thought it was going to be; one 5.8 move and some tricky scrambling up to the summit block.
Physically: Not so bad, surely not the easiest 14’er, but in the lower/mid range.
Route finding: Straight forward except for the last 100’. Once you reach the notch don’t just go straight up, take your time, you’ll find easier routes below the chockstone.
Danger: The last 100’ is a thrill and there’s lots of loose rock that can be kicked down on you by climbers above.
If Thunderbolt was 4 feet shorter not many people would bother climb this peak. But the fun climbing in the last 100’ and the technical summit block make it worth the trip.
Gained ridge VIA southwest chute to begin traverse to Mount Sill.
Climbed SWChute #1 from camp in Palisades Basin with Ken T. Threw rope over summit block and prusik'ed up.
Part of a traverse
Day hiked the Thuderbolt to Sill Traverse in just over 20 hours. Started at South Lake and ended at the shuttle car at Glacier Lodge. Climbed with SPer's Forjan,Kevin Trieu,Dave S,Luis Gijon and Corey Harelson. Took SW Chute #1 to get to the summit block and topped out via a TR that was lead/set by Corey. This was an unforgettable experience.Great climbing trip.
Nice climb with Willand Fred, in a chilly sunny day. Will led the summit block. Fred and me top roped it. No rope needed before that.
Last day of Summer. Climbed with Will (dubhuneter) and Luis. Will led the very very exposed summit block and we top roped.
Start of the traverse. Skipped the summit block, because peeling and hitting that pointy rock looked painful, so I'll have to come back and do it again.
EDIT: Finally aided and top-roped it 8/18/2011. Fun stuff! Trip report
Successfully summited with Mike Brooks. Did the West face of the summit block after climbing the SW Chute#1 from our Dusy Basin campsite
It's been long time since I been up this. Went up with 3 friends for my sixth time up.
My SP partners Tom Becht and Glenn Gooking and I hiked in from South Lake over Bishop Pass and exited down Mt. Sill's L-Couloir and out to Glacier Lodge at the end of a very, very long day. It was quite a thrill to climb Thunderbolt's summit block. Thanks to Glenn for leading it.
Long day doing the Palisades Traverse with Glenn and Augie. Thanks to them for pushing me to climb the block via the 5.9 side, easily the hardest thing I've done to date.
Hit TP as part of the Palisades traverse last summer. Great exposure and difficult route-finding, but Bruce kept us on course.
Nice to go back and get the summit block (aided and with the "Vlad Cam." :)
Exciting climb with Samantha, Hakan (sierrawolf), and Vladimir. Vlad lead the class 4 pitches and the summit block.