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[TR] Tooth- NE Slab 2/19/2006


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Climb: Tooth-NE Slab


Date of Climb: 2/19/2006


Trip Report:

On Sunday, Tom Hemm, Sergio, and I

tried the NE Slab on Tooth.

WE started a little late (8 am

from parking lot). There was

hardly any ice on the route.

We placed 3 screws in total

all in one place for the anchor

at the top of pitch 1. It was

mostly thin crust over powder

on steep terrain (>= 55-60

degrees consistently for the

first two pitches with sections

of 70-75 degrees). The crux

section was pitch 2, which

would've been a solid WI3

if there were any ice. As

such, we could not get any

piece of pro in that pitch,

and ran it out till we reached

the tree above. About every

third pick was good smile.gif.


We had two bad cluster fucks,

and wasted quite some time

undoing them. We got to the

ridge and did two pitches (got

to the col which Nelson talks

about), and realized that we

still had three more pitches

to go, and it was already 4 pm.

So, we decided to bail, and

rapped the way we came up.

It was one short rap followed

by four full (douple rope)

raps to get to the snowslope

which we downclimbed. We had

our headlamps out for the

last rap.


Another team of two started

up the route after us, but bailed

after the first pitch.


Overall, it was a fun trip.

Pro was marginal to non-existent

in the first two pitches, and no

ice to tell your momma about.


It was a bad day for batteries.

Both my camera battery and my car

battery died. Sergio might want

to post some pics.



Gear Notes:

1 picket

3 screws (used all of them at one place)

2 angles

a few small cams (upto 1 in)

double ropes

two tools


Approach Notes:

No need for floatation.

Edited by pup_on_the_mountain
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Rapping down the NE Slab was not bad at all. We just rapped

from tree to tree. In fact, someone had already set up

most of the anchors. We backed them up for the first two

(heavy) guys to go down. We sacrificed one oval biner for

the last rap.


It was the first time up the route for all of us, and

it looked like the ridge pitches would create a lot of

rope drag. We had observed the NE Slab route on the way

up and thought we should be able to use the trees without

much issues.

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We were the first one on the route on Saturday 2/19. We made it to the top and rap down on South Side. Here is my trip report on NE Slab.

My partner and I climbed Tooth NE slab Saturday 2/19/06. We saw a few climbers on the route a weekend before when we were heading to climb Tooth South side. We had another week of cold weather, so I thought it would be a nice ice climbing.

We had 4 climbers at the trail head; however one person had his ski issues at the trail head. When we got to the base of climb, he and his partner decided to turn around. I lead the first pitch. I was hoping that I was able to put ice screws in, but that was a joke. I put one 13cm screws about 15 ft up from my belayer. The ice was very thin, and I was able to see the rock underneath of the ice layer. I tried to put another ice screw in, but it didn’t even go a half way. So I climbed close to the rock wall on the

right side, and hoping I can put rock pros in. We didn’t have many varieties of rock pros, so I was straggling to find a right crack. I finally got up to the place I could make my anchor on the rock to bring my partner up. On first pitch, I only put 3 pros on full rope length. The

second pitch started 10 ft below the place I was belaying, and the route went to left to the trees. It was the same quality of ice and snow. It not thick ice to put ice screws in, and snow is not deep enough to put pickets

in. My partner put only 2 pickets on entire pitch, and hoping that he was not going to fall. The third pitch, I went through the small trees and put a

few slings on them. When I got up on the ridge, I was in the sun. It was very warm to belay my partner up. My fingers and toes were back with me again. We got on the North ridge route from there it was easy climb.

However only one section, we had to go over a small overhung cornice that was a little difficult move we had to do. After that it was easy walk to the summit. When we got to the summit, we realized we only had one 60m rope

because our other party turned around at the base. So we did painful 4 raps on South side. And we hiked down to Pineapple pass and hiked down to our snowshoes in dusk. We hiked down with our headlamp on, got to our car at


Overall, it was fun climb because we made it and nobody got hurt. But if someone asked me if I want to climb again that route, I would hesitate to answer yes.

Edited by Pochi
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Posting pics per Bala's request...














also, curious what the feasibility of rapping in to S Basin, traversing over beneath Pineapple Pass and back over into Great Scott Bowl is. Briefly enterained the notion as an alternative to rapping the N-side, but decided against it on account of the unknown.

Edited by sverdina
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We saw a few climbers on the route a weekend before when we were heading to climb Tooth South side. We had another week of cold weather, so I thought it would be a nice ice climbing.


Haha, that was probably me and my partner. "On the route" doesn't necessarily mean "Completed the route!" cry.gif

We were a little sketched out by the fact that 1) there's basically no protection early on, and what you could place would not realistically hold a fall and 2) thin ice/snow conditions were not conducive to faith in any given pick or crampon placement, so a fall was always a lingering possibility that you couldn't predict. However, the fact that you guys made it up means it must not have been impossible. We were thinking that a more experienced group could have done it, but we felt it was above our acceptable level of risk.

Edited by ClimbingPanther
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  • 3 years later...

Extremely nice pictures, Thank you. I somehow have missed climbing the Tooth in all these years of climbing in the Cascades and plan to do it in May this year. My partner is suggesting the South Face which Beckey says is class 4, but he says is probably low 5th class.

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