Jump to content
  • Announcements

    • olyclimber


      Thanks for visiting Cascadeclimbers.com.   Yep, we are still going!    Just put a new coat of paint on the site. Still the same old community of climbers, skiers, and people who love to get outdoors. Hope you had a great 2021, and wish you the best for 2022 and beyond.  Thanks again for stopping by.
Sign in to follow this  

[TR] Forbidden Peak - East Ridge 9/20/2014

Recommended Posts

Trip: Forbidden Peak - East Ridge


Date: 9/20/2014


Trip Report:

We decided to climb Forbidden Peak East Ridge on the weekend of September 20-21 2014. The forecast for North Cascade was very good. We originally wanted to approach to Boston Basin on Saturday and climb the mountain on Sunday. Our friend could not leave on Friday night and we started on Saturday at 4:45am from Redmond in order to get to Marblemount at 7 to try to get a permit. We got to the ranger station at 7 as planned only to discover that all of the available permits were taken on Friday. We quickly discussed our options and decided to try to climb the route in a day. We got to Boston Basin trailhead at 8:15 and started hiking at 8:30. As the start was late we needed to be fast. My friends ran ahead and I tried to catch up with them heavily puffing. On a grassy moraine we somehow lost the trail and traversed directly through alpine vegetation to the beginning of the slabs. We scrambled on the slabs heading to the unnamed glacier mentioned in the Nelson’s guidebook. Crossing several snow patches, we got closer to the ridge keeping right from the heavily broken glacier tongue. There we looked at the gullies and discussed which one to take to gain the ridge. Finally we decided to take the rightmost wide gully. The snow in the gully was firm, but not steep. My friends climbed in boots and I put my crampons on. After the snow, an easy scramble led us to the broad col on a ridge before the first gendarme. It was 12:30. We looked at the gully on the right side which we should climb from East Ledges on a way back. We left our crampons and boots, roped up and started climbing at 1:00. The climbing was airy and exposed, but not hard. We climbed in 2 roped teams, simul-climbing most of the time. We did not bypass any of the gendarmes, but climbed them straight. 5.7 crack and flake section brought us on top of “pitch 5” gendarme. Next was a short rappel about 20 feet which is not mentioned in Nelson guidebook. Leading the 5.8 section I climbed over the flake to the left and found an awkward unprotected slab below the roof. John led the second rope and climbed straight up the slightly overhanging, but protected roof. We arrived at the summit at 4:00 climbed the ridge in 3 hours. The views of the North Cascades were stunning. There was not a single cloud in the sky. Though we had 2 ropes, we decided to rappel on a single rope to avoid rope drag. There were rappel stations on every half rope. We almost missed the 4th station, it was behind a rock. The rappel line goes almost vertically down. There were some slings on a small ridge on a climber’s left, but you don’t need to go there, just keep rappelling down looking for the stations. After the 5th rappel we reached East Ledges. We traversed the ledges counting 5 ridges and correctly found our ascend gully. We were back at the col at 5:50. At 6:10 we started downclimbing the gullies, then the slabs. There were several parties camping in Boston Basin. We hit the main stream crossing during dusk at 7:50. Hiking in the dark with headlamps we arrived at the trailhead at 9:15. 12 hours and 45 minutes car to car – not a bad time. Fantastic day!


Forbidden Peak East Ridge



Heading to the unnamed glacier



View on East Ridge



Glacier tongue



Approach gully on a right



In the gully



Coming to the col



At the col





Rappel before 5.8 gendarme



5.8 section





Beginning of the rappels



On East Ledges



Climbing a gully back to the col
















Gear Notes:

Standard rack up to 2 inches. Set of nuts. Several slings.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

The rappel anchors on the West Ridge must be new, they were not there earlier in the summer.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

great to have a photo description of the east ledges descent now. so you were happy with your choice in the "Climbing a gully back to the col" photo? that is the best gulley right?

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
great to have a photo description of the east ledges descent now.


FYI, I included a couple E Ledges photos on this site a couple years ago here. Though no gulley ascent photo included. I'd have to guess that other photos are out there in the interwebs as well, though I didn't take the time to look just now.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

No, this is all about East Side descend. There is a rib on East side about 100 feet to the left of the descend line. There are also rappel slings on it, but you don't need to go there. The right rappel line goes down. That's what I meant.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, correction. The rappel after pitch 5 is IN Nelson's guidebook, but not in the description, but on topo. My bad, need to read route description more carefully :)

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this