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wayne

[TR] Buck Mt. - North Ridge 8/10/2009

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Trip: Buck Mt. - North Ridge

 

Date: 8/10/2009

 

Trip Report:

This is the tale of the 2 sides of the coin. Only by flipping it and looking at the particular side(sides) , will one know the 2 different stories that can be told.

Take the North ridge of Buck Mt. for several lessons from the toss. The west side of the mt is one of the most intimidating features I have seen this side of the Canadian Rockies.

 

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Its East side however is much more tame and an easier looking gulley runs up right next to it..

Jim and I where quivering at the thought of coming to grips withe the desperately steep ridge-line that we saw from the High -camp!

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Jim also may have quivered at the thought of not having his sleeping bag as well. We had much to stew over that night at camp. P1000411.jpg

We we were motivated to bring extra gear and ropes as a nod to the amazing steepness that we saw from the binoculars at high camp.Heck we thought we could easily get shut down just trying to get up the disastrously bad looking gully that we took to get to it.

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In the dark of early am we were nearly shut down by the gully of doom when Jim pulled off his first in a set of blocks down upon himself. "Worst Gully Ever" Now behind us, We were given the other face of the coin. The first two major towers were easily bypassed with a lovely talus and heather slope on its east aspect. Wow, what a break and at the same time a bit of a let down racing up to try to get on the ridge before we got sucked into the gully just left of the North Ridge.

P1000424.jpg

We went onto the wild looking 3rd tower, again though, finding it going well on its left(eastern) side.It took several leads to get to the ridge line and the several to get up "Tower #3" (actually our first tower encountered). There we encountered incredible exposure and "earned pro". The steep 5.8 pitches were actually quite solid and fun as well.

P1000446.JPGP1000441.jpg

Much of the nerves now calm, we settled into swiftly dispensing of 8 pitches before doing a long simo to the vertical 2 pitch finish at the top of the "Hoof" shaped summit. I sought to go right through the notch between the Bucks toes. It was good looking rock and ended up being a most spectacular finish to a worthwhile route after all.

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After congratulating Jim on surviving yet another overhead trundle as well as his first -first ascent, I began sorting through the very old summit register. What I saw there completely shocked the both of us!!The other side of the coin is shown.

 

 

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After much discussion, we determined that we had indeed made the 2nd ascent of this line!We figure it must be a typo in the Green Beckey guide? Oh well. We werent very put off by that news. We had a great weekend and shot footage for another video as well so check back later..

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Judging by the pictures, the "aesthetic rating of 1+" might be a bit low...

 

That's a helluva rigeline, with stunning exposure - well done indeed! :brew:

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I had a short zip on a small bag Sorry Jimbo.

 

FA issue:

I know , that makes me wonder? It was a good route. It could have gone along many lines. It was a bit loose in between tower 3 and the hoof finish but I wouldnt have told people to avoid the thing due to danger like we see in the Beckey guide. Does anyone have contact with the 2 fa'ers?

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nice one Wayne. sorry about the typo, even though the climb was the same, it's kind of a bummer. the last great ridge still lays in despair

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bummer about the FA. I had to crack up with your naming the gully "Gully of Doom" cause that is what i named the pass with steep snow and rock fall the, "pass of doom" on the same peak.

 

dammit! I didn't sign the summit register either. oh well...

 

great trip and report as usual! the #6 image is friggen awesome!!!!

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That summit register is in amazingly good shape for being 30+ years old!! Those guys probably knew the difference between a ridge and a face. Awesome pic looking down on Jim.

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That summit register is actually 40+ years old. First entry from 1965!

 

It was a bummer forgetting my sleeping bag, but it was a pretty warm night out, and Wayne graciously lent me his long johns and down vest. Not too bad really.

 

It was a great route with a great partner. Spectacular ridge line, evil approach gully, and a walk off decent. What more could you ask for?

 

Thanks Wayne!

 

Cheers.

Jimbo

 

p.s. - no spooning necessary due to forgotten bag.

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I recognized the name Cal Folsome, a quick check of AAJ reveals that he did the first rout on Big Four's north face in winter, and it looks like some FWA on Dragontail. Both back in the 70's. Did anyone here know him?

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nice work guys! I have looked at the ridge a lot from around the area...always looks so rad! looks worth repeating for sure! jimbo i still have your fleece in my truck.

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Nice work, Wayne and Jim. It has always looked like an interesting line in the photos.

 

Cal Folsom helped out a great deal with the Index Town Wall guidebook in 1993, not to mention doing some very nice trail work and several new routes. At the time I recall he was living part of the time in Salt Lake City. I bet Daryl Cramer would know how to find him. I recognize the handwriting in the summit register as Cal's.

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Off topic, but in 1977 Willi Unsoeld told me about Big Four in the winter being a classic cascade climb. I would guess somebody may have climbed it before Folsom and Carlstad but maybe not. He probably would have known about their climb.

 

Is it possible that Folsom and Moore climbed routes on the North Face AND the North Ridge? It is not uncommon for climbers to climb multiple routes on the same feature.

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I sent an email to Mark Moore, director of the Northwest Avalanche Center. I asked if he climbed the north ridge of Buck Mtn. He said, no, it was a different Mark Moore. FYI.

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It was great hanging with you guys at the diner after your climb. Congrats!

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