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[TR] Slesse Mountain - Northeast Butress Attempt 7/18/2008

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Having bailed off Slesse myself in the rain, I can say that pins are not necessary to bail from this route - that's what the many trees are for.




Last Sept we went to bed halfway up under clear skies and woke up to it socked in and snowing. :shock:


Thanks to Z-man for navigating through the gloom.



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Is your partner the Reinhard Fabish of North Face - Robie Reid fame?


While the direct start is heavily threatened by serac fall from both sides of the buttress, the approach to the North Rib crosses an apparently much more stable "glacier" and has very little if any exposure to crevasse fall. For a lot of reasons it's the better climb IMHO.


yep.. Reinhard put up Pacemaker on the North Face of Robbie Ried... I think he also did the FWA of Judge Howay...

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Definitely scary. Glad it was "just" some close calls and not the "last call".


Like Dru and others have said, the pocket glacier slides off 6 out of 8 years, so why not wait for that? We were ready to do it early last August, but the glacier had not slid so we waited. Then in early September we were monitoring this forum as usual and saw the report that it had slid. So we jumped on it on 9/14:




and got it in these nice conditions:




On the way up the slabs we saw the cut rope from the guy who got crushed by the serac there in July.


It's a major bummer that you survived the approach in deadly conditions only to bail in the clouds.


On our descent, we could see the clouds were coming in:




tomtom started one day after us and those clouds brought the snow...


Be patient - the right conditions will come around.

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As of last week it was still big, bold, and moving. I would not get anywhere near it as it is regularly calving chunks off. We came in from the basin and went up the toe of the buttress. It involved an easy scramble and a quick traverse of a snow field. We found a nice place to hop onto the rock where the snow field was not too under cut. This is original start and does have some exposure to falling ice. But less so than the Pocket/Bypass Glacier. We bivied above that after doing a couple of vegi pitches as well as some 11a climbing with sparse protection followed by a bunch of slabs. There was a snow patch to the right of the buttress for water. See attached markup of Marc's photo of our approximate route.


At the time the weather was blue bird and the route very dry. Found a fair amount of bail gear but Marc your rack was not seen. The route was nice but many stacked blocks on the upper pitches that are less than trust worthy. Heard a guy took a 60 footer which cut well into his rope when a hold broke earlier this year.


The descent was long. Especially, because the road is gated at the highway which adds to the hike out. We left the bivy around 6am and got to highway around 10pm. We bivied along the road and walked back to the campground where we got a ride up to our vehicle.



BTW does anyone know why the Slesse Creek Road is locked? We meet someone with a key as we first arrived that was going in.




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7/8/08 the pocket ice chunk is big and moving, it released several times during the climb. Best to do the full butt. We crossed at 4 AM from prop cairn and once on the butt toe were safe from ice fall. The gate is still locked at C. Lake Road putting the hike out at about 5 miles from the descent junction w/ the road.

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