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[TR] Forbidden Peak - West Ridge 10/1/2010

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Trip: Forbidden Peak - West Ridge


Date: 10/1/2010


Trip Report:

Attempted the west ridge, spending the night in Boston basin. Fall colors are out in force and this being my first time in the basin I have to say it is one of the most spectacular places I've ever been.


Weather was spectacular and there was plenty of water all the way to high camp. Morning Star creek was running fast, but the crossing was do-able. We arrived after about 4 hours and set up our bivy.


We headed out the next morning at about 6:30 with moonlight and the first signs of sunrise, weaving our way up the polished granite slabs. We made our way towards the alternate gulley (couloir is long out of shape) on icy moderately steep snow. The exit off the snow is getting thin but is still do-able, though a fall there would be bad.


From here we pitched out the gulley, which was downsloping, wet, and in many places quite loose; we spent way too much time getting up it. In retrospect, staying out of the gulley on the left side where the rappel stations are (which we did about half way up) may be a better option. We felt that there were several 5th class steps, but again maybe we were off route.


Once we got to the ridge, it was clear that we were running late... ah for the longer days of summer. We decided to keep going and see how fast progress would be now that we were out of the gulley. After simul-climbing about 1/3 of the way up the ridge we reached the first vertical barrier, checked our watches, and decided to bail. Once on the ridge, the route delivers with amazing exposure, scenery, and climbing.


Once back at the saddle, we walked down to the first rap station, and did four or five raps back to our gear (all raps stay out of the gulley except for the last which deposits you at the base). We carefully downclimbed snow to easier slopes and arrived at camp 10 hours after starting which would be reasonable if we had actually made it to the summit :). Got back to the car at about 8:30 PM.


Pictures at: http://picasaweb.google.com/adamlandefeld/ForbiddenPeakWestRidge#


Gear Notes:

7.7mm 60m rope, medium rack, crampons


Approach Notes:

Steep, easy to follow. Morning Star creek is running fast, but there is at least one possible crossing that will keep your feet mostly dry. Tons of water available.

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Nice outing. Nice weather! This time of year the best option would be East Ridge or East Ridge direct, as no crampons or axe needed on the approach and (while steep) the path to the E ridge notch is straightforward. The climbing on E Ridge Direct is more difficult than West Ridge so YMMV. I did it as a 12-hour car to car trip couple years ago and it was OK that way.

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that 4th class approach to the left of the gully is recommended over the gully in my mind.

nice trip even without the summit eh?


Yeah, hard to complain!

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Climbed this over the weekend. Great route. The advice to stay left of the gully is indeed good advice. The moat crossing is no issue if the right spot is chosen. A dusting of snow on the N side of everthing added a real nice alpine flavor, but the next round of storms this weekend will probably do it in for the season. Go get some if you can!

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