U-Notch + Chimney Variation Climber's Log

Viewing: 1-18 of 18

wdimpfl - Dec 28, 2017 9:45 pm Date Climbed: May 15, 1969

Went right in U-notch  Sucess!

Date uncertain. Climbed this with Chuck Mims when we were graduate students in chemistry at UC Berkeley. I made the mistake of going to the right of the rocks in the U-notch. It seemed more secure than the steep ice to the left, but was harder climbing.


Simkin - Jul 8, 2017 1:21 am Date Climbed: Jul 1, 2017

Free solo  Sucess!

Here is the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NASwdKPOz-M


Deb - May 31, 2013 9:51 pm Date Climbed: May 30, 2013

YES!  Sucess!

So happy to have finally gotten in this couloir after so many years of drooling over it. Pretty decent conditions - snow bridge, blue ice, ice under snow, soft snow, 10 raps...rockfall. All in all of a frickin long day....Ryan and I climbed this sucker as a dayhike and I'm so damn glad it's over!


mtndonkey - Jul 16, 2012 6:57 pm Date Climbed: Jun 16, 2012

Solid Climb

Low snow year and schrund was pretty wide open. The majority of the route was alpine ice and we soloed the bottom protion and rope up for the final 70 meters. Climbed the chimney in mountaineering boots which is about 65 meters from the base to the top. Ended up turning around at the top of the chimney due to the time of day and need to descend and drive back to LA that night. Will have to return to finish it off, but solid technical climb under the conditions.


Kerstin - May 27, 2012 11:51 pm Date Climbed: Aug 9, 1987

Exciting climb!  Sucess!

With Greg Smith. After crossing the bergschrund on a small snowbridge, we soloed up about 200 feet, then roped up. We left our boots in at the top of the U-notch and climbed up the chimney in our tennis shoes. It took three hours to get to the summit from the glacier. Descending was more difficult. We only had a single 165-foot, 9mm rope that became soaked, with water and very dirty. The snow in the U-notch had become very soft, with water ice underneath. It was scary. We downclimbed most of it. It took us five hours to descend from the summit to the base of the U-notch. A great adventure and an unforgettable day.


Darren9 - Aug 2, 2011 1:38 am Date Climbed: Jul 22, 2011

good stuff  Sucess!

Challenging route with some beginners in tow, we made the summit and back to the glacier in a little over 24 hours...lots of adventure. SMG sponsored trip.


ElGreco - Jul 25, 2011 1:25 am Date Climbed: Jul 23, 2011

U-notch + chimney  Sucess!

Fantastic climbing with Jack in an exhilarating setting! Perfect weather. U-notch was mostly snow with some ice which could be skirted. The bergschrund was passable on the right with 15ft or so of near vertical snow climbing. The 2nd pitch of the chimney above the notch has a few interesting moves. We stayed on the ridge crest after the chimney on the way to the summit, past two gendarmes, instead of dropping down into the other side - not necessary, but made for very exposed and exciting climbing (up to 4th class). Getting from the notch to the summit took a couple of hours. 12 hours total from camp and back. Highly recommended route!


cdog - Sep 8, 2010 11:39 am Date Climbed: Sep 5, 2010

long day, good day!  Sucess!

made a successful trip with my buddy Nate, based from our base camp at 4th Lake. Found a mix of blue ice and alpine ice in the U-Notch Couloir. Generally excellent conditions for the ice, which took some solid screw placements. The 'shrund was still bridged to the climber's right, so crossing was pretty easy for September. Couloir rockfall was minimal in the morning, but the sunlight later in the day did trigger some natural erosion. We took a variation of the standard rock route, culminating in Nate leading a few 5.8-ish moves to reach the summit ridge. A few interesting boulder problems, one rather exposed, led to the summit proper. Rappelling the U-Notch was an ordeal, taking approximately 12 single-rope rap's. We couldn't help but knock chossy rocks down the couloir during our descent. We placed a few anchors and rap'd off a few sketchy pre-existing ones. Also found several well above reach - perhaps placed when the gully had more snow. Made the bergshrund rap in the dark, but did find the last anchor reached fairly easy ground below the crevasse.
This route and area was a nice slap in the face. Pretty damn impressive area!


PellucidWombat - Jun 22, 2010 9:56 pm Date Climbed: Jun 20, 2010

Night time descent  Sucess!

June 20th, 2010 - The last peak of a very long day as Steph and I made a good effort at a Palisade traverse. We descended the E Couloir of the U-Notch in the dark. Good solid neve all the way down, and some frightening rockfall. Luckily the bergschrund rapp station is in a protected spot!


pratyush - Mar 29, 2010 1:41 pm Date Climbed: Mar 29, 2010

North Pal summit!  Sucess!

Climbed it in a group of 8 climbers from Caltech Alpine Club. Notch was in perfect snowy conditions, the scrambling was fun too! Bergschund is close to 15 feet deep!


dabender - Dec 29, 2008 4:40 pm Date Climbed: Jul 15, 2004

step up  Sucess!

This was the first time I climbed with a guide in the Sierras. It's a great way to go for someone with my age and moderate ability. Highly recommended for the competent, fit tourist. The rest of the folks posting are hardmen (or women) and I admire you for it - but I feel safer following on a route like this. The route is a step up over the class 3 and lower peak bagging I'd been doing and it was a blast.

Dave S

Dave S - Jun 23, 2008 4:25 pm Date Climbed: Jun 21, 2008

North Pal from U-Notch  Sucess!

Climbed the U-Notch and Chimney variation to the summit with Brad Mastros. Mostly good ice in the U-Notch. Great climb!


bighornmonkey - Dec 29, 2007 10:21 am Date Climbed: May 29, 2006

Done...  Sucess!

yep...did that in the spring...That was great adventure.


asmrz - Dec 22, 2007 1:05 pm Date Climbed: Feb 19, 1993

N.Pal via U-Notch in Winter  Sucess!

Bryan Johnson and I skied to the (summer) morraine camp below Mt. Gayley Feb. 18, 1994 and the next morning postholed the snowed-in glacier to the base of the U-Notch. Climbed N.Pal via the U-Notch and the upper chimney. One of the best winter adventures I ever participated on as the temperatures on the ridge were frigid even with one piece pile and Goretex suits and plastic boots. We JUST managed to get that one.


myles - Aug 16, 2007 10:27 am Date Climbed: Aug 8, 2007

Great day out  Sucess!

Came in the back way from the West Chute. Found the two pitches from U-Notch more interesting than I expected, but great fun.
Descended the LeConte route.
Not a cloud in the sky!


fossana - Apr 8, 2007 10:48 pm Date Climbed: Aug 7, 2003


Link up with Pol


lizrdboy - Feb 24, 2007 11:23 pm

Good Stuff  Sucess!

Skirted the 'schrund, then up nice hard snow ice and finally the 2 pitches of 5th class at the top. Started too late and got back to camp at dark.

Mike N

Mike N - Aug 17, 2006 7:19 pm Date Climbed: Jul 5, 2006

North Pal  Sucess!

Great climb up the U Notch. The bergschrund is larger than I thought. Chimney was interesting. A little route finding is necessary to go across the top. Good 4th class, just don't slip.

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