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[TR] Mt Wake (Ruth Gorge) - S Face via Johnson/Wake Col "The Cook Inlet" (FA) 10/22/2012

John Frieh

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Trip: Mt Wake (Ruth Gorge) - S Face via Johnson/Wake Col "The Cook Inlet" (FA)


Date: 10/22/2012


Summary: First Ascent of the South face of Mount Wake via the Johnson/Wake col on October 22 2012. John Frieh and Jess Roskelley. “The Cook Inlet” 4,500', V AI4 M4


Details: On October 21 around 4 pm, Jess Roskelley (Spokane, WA) and I, John Frieh (Portland, OR), flew from Talkeetna to the Ruth Glacier below Mt. Dickey in the Ruth Gorge. We were able to scope out two possible lines before it got dark. After some discussion we decided to attempt an unclimbed line on the south face of Mt Wake. On October 22 we crossed the schrund at 9 am (late start due to what little sun Alaska gets this time of year) and made slow but steady progress up to the Johnson/Wake col. We bypassed the serac (crux) on the climbers right with a few pitches of AI4 and 100% premium Ruth Gorge "cracker jack consistency" granite mixed climbing. From the col we climbed through some mixed bands (M4) to reach the summit of Wake shortly before sunset. Nine hours of daylight is as short as it sounds.


We retraced our steps back to the col where we took a coffee/perpeteum brew stop before continuing the descent into the night. Minus an almost unroped crevasse fall (me) it was largely uneventful. We reached our skis around midnight (15 hours skis to skis) where we opted for a nap before continuing the ski back to basecamp in the morning.


Later in the morning on the 23rd Paul Roderick of Talkeetna Air Taxi picked us up and brought us back to Talkeetna to make for a brief 40 or so hours in the range.


Many thanks to John Calder for the ANC logistics, Paul Roderick and the TAT crew, and Jess Roskelley for taking a chance climbing with a complete stranger. Jess is a solid climber who I look forward to climbing with again.


Also many thanks to my Gym Jones family for the continued guidance and encouragement. Much respect.


Home in the Range



Bedtime chores



October 22






Above the col



Jess's first Alaska First Ascent :rawk:



Gear Notes:

Two FAs in Alaska in October both on Petzl Lynx; they are quickly becoming my favorite crampon.


Lots of Wild Squirrel



Approach Notes:

Smash and Grab style climbing in the Alaska Range would not be possible without the expertise and service that Paul Roderick and Talkeetna Air Taxi provides. The best of the best. Fly TAT!


The MAN: Paul Roderick


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