Good to know this bit of history, Jim. Those guys were animals. We described the crossing to the best of our ability and gave it a name in jest, which for whatever reason has stuck. Those cairns we found must have been from your pals in 1938. Glad your new guidebook recommends this as Option 2, versus Vol. II of your first book, which suggested the scary Gunsight Notch as Option 2. I see now that green Fred (3rd ed., fourth printing 2020) describes "Doug's Direct" by name, as well (see pgs. 274-275). This is the way.
[TR] Johannesberg Mtn. - E. Ridge 7/12/2004
By Juan, July 14, 2004 in North Cascades
Posted July 14, 2004 (edited)
Climb: Johannesberg Mtn.-E. Ridge
Date of Climb: 7/12/2004
We set a date many months ago, and the weather cooperated. We left Seattle Sunday morning (7/11) and left the car at the gate on the Cascade River Road (Eldo trailhead) at 8:45 or so. We reached Gunsight Notch in a few hours, and were bummed out when we looked down the steep gully on the other side. We knew the Gunsight Traverse is considered "tedious," but it also looked damn dangerous to descend. So we opted to try "Doug's Direct." This was an unproven means of getting over Mix Up Peak, and it worked like a charm.
To do this (and we know from cairns on the back that we are not the first to have done so), proceed on the Cache Glacier to the upper climbers' right on the snow as if starting the Rowland Tabor route on Mix Up (the N. Ridge). Scramble straight up to the ridge crest instead of bearing left per the N. Ridge route (class 3-4). Don't go to the deep notch on your right, but rather look straight over the top. If you've hit it right, you'll see more class 3 on the other side, then a long passage of heather heading down to the alp slope that separates Mix Up from the Triplets. Descend on the path of least resistance. If you look at Beckey's green guide, the drawing that covers J'Berg to Cache Col has the words "alp slope" in the middle. Our camp was just above the word "slope." Room enough for two bivi sacks plus running water. Beautiful view spot with sun until late. We drank a pint of whiskey, took Ambien, and slept well.