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N Dahlstrom

[TR] Dragontail and Prusik - Serpentine Ridge and West Ridge 7/8/2013

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Trip: Dragontail and Prusik - Serpentine Ridge and West Ridge


Date: 7/8/2013


Trip Report:

My friend Sam and I climbed the Serpentine Ridge on Dragontail then the West Ridge of Prusik peak over on July 8th and 9th.


Left the Stuart Lake trailhead at about 4am on Monday 7/8 and hiked in the dark for a bit



First views of the day's objective



We took the scree ridge up to its highest point then crossed a bit of steepish snow up to the base of the route. We had brought one lightweight axe in case we needed to chop steps but it was unnecessary. I had seen two different photos of were to start the first pitch. We chose the righthand variation. It was nice, solid rock right out the gate.

Scree ridge.



Sam at the base of the route around 8am.



Looking up the enjoyable and easy start of the route.



After of few belayed pitches and roped scrambling we made it around the "Black Pillar" to the right and takled the crux 5.8 cracks. They were thin and felt pretty solid 5.8. I actually almost slipped off but somehow recovered and avoided falling on Sam's head at the belay. Looking down at Sam after the crux.



Then there's a super fun 5.6-5.7 ish handcrack next.



A little break in the sun after the technical climbing.



Colchuck glacier



We then started up the second 1000 feet of the ridge which is not nearly as pleasant as the first. We were also tired from getting little sleep the night before. In hindsight we could have slept in much later but I just didn't know how quickly we were going to be able to climb this route. This is definitely the longest route I have ever done and Sam is relatively new to alpine climbing altogether.


We basically just stayed on the ridge crest when possible then into the extremely loose gully to the right in order to avoid a gendarme a couple hundred feet before the summit block. Then we went left again at the base of the summit where it looked very steep and hit the ridge less than 100 feet below the summit.


On top at 4pm.




Sleepy afternoon.



After we ate dinner we realized that we were still really hungry and that we didn't even have that much food left for the next day compared to how much we had already eaten. Our original plan was to stay the night and climb the Stanley-Burgner route on Prusik the next day, but looking at how tired we were and also the lack of food we decided that night to just hike out in the morning, get brunch in L-town and do some cragging instead. We ate some more landjagger and cheese and went to bed.


Another Stuart photo



Beautiful morning.



We packed up in the morning and started to head out, but while filling our bottles at the top of Aasgard pass we got decided that we would so much rather stay in the alpine as long as possible even if it meant being a little hungry. We took inventory of our supplies and decided that we had enough supplies for a quick run up the West ridge of Prusik. We stashed everything we didn't need for the climb at Aasgard at 8am and jogged over to Prusik.



We saw some goats (and Sam photo-bombed):



Roped up and climbing by 9:30 or 10am. We were about 2 hours total between roping up and getting back to out gear.



Hiked back to our gear at Aasgard and began the trudge down the pass. It is fully melted out if you want it to be and quite straightforward.


Last view of Dragontail.



Beers at the truck by 5:30pm. What a great couple of days in the mountains!



Gear Notes:

Approach shoes

Rack to 3'' (maybe could bring less)

Single rope

no crampons, no axe (unless it is supposed to get really cold and freeze at night, then maybe)


Approach Notes:

Stuart Lake trailhead. Around Colchuck Lake. Up the Colchuck glacier moraine and onto the rock.


Hike off was some steepish but very soft snow (gets early morning sun).


Some snow fields in the Enchantments Basin but Prusik Pass was snow free.

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Nice two-bagger lads! The way you knocked those two off, I'm guessing you'll be tagging many more, so keep on posting up.

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forsake'n the alpine for beerz n' burgerz? kidz these dayz! :grin:

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