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This is the EScree - the Electronic version of the Scree newsletter from
the Peak Climbing Section of the Loma Prieta Chapter of the Sierra Club.
It should be viewed or printed with a fixed-pitch font such as Courier.
     This publication may not be posted on any public news group.
                  July, 2000	Vol. 34 No. 7
     Deadline for submissions to the next Scree is Sunday 7/23/2000 

This issue of Scree will be on the Official PCS Website at

The EScree is distributed to email lists as described on "the back page".

Next general meeting (PCS meetings are the second tuesday of each month)

Date:   	Tuesday, July 11
Time:		6:00 PM
NEW Location:	Portal Park in Cupertino

Directions:	From 280 go South on Wolfe.  Go 
right on Stevens Creek Blvd and then go right 
(north) on Portal Avenue which is the first street 
west of the Vallco Fashion Mall.  The park is on 
the left up a few hundred yards.

Program:	BBQ at Portal Park
The July meeting is the annual PCS BBQ. The park 
has been reserved from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM but we 
can stay later if we wish. I will be there about 6:00 PM 
and start lighting the charcoal for the BBQ. I have to 
go there in the morning to put up the reserved signs 
anyway so I will get the fires going in the evening. 
Please feel free to bring all family members. Alcoholic 
beverages are also permitted... just don't mix ice axes 
and alcohol. Nasty.

Please bring a few dollars to contribute to the park 
reservation ($50) and the charcoal.

Historically, a gear sale and/or swap meet activity has 
been a part of the BBQ. I figure that if Ron has more 
than one beer I can swap all my old water bottles for 
his Cobra ice tools. Please bring your extra gear if you 
wish to participate in this event.

Bring all you think you will eat or drink. None of this 
will be provided by the PCS. Also, please don't forget a 
plate, glass, cutlery, and maybe a big roll of paper 
towels! You will not need to bring charcoal.

-- Rick Booth, PCS Chair

PCS Trips

PCS trips must be submitted through the Scheduler (see back 
cover for details). Trips not received from the Scheduler will be 
listed as PRIVATE, without recourse.

*** Mt. Ansel Adams
Peaks:	Ansel Adams (11,760  - Class 3)
Dates:	July 1 thru July 4     Sat thru Tues
Maps:	Vogelsang Peak  7.5 & Mount Lyell 7.5
Leader:	Charles Schafer (408) 855-4318	charles@paraform.com

Secor calls Ansel Adams the impressive peak that sits at 
the head of the Lyell Fork of the Merced River.

We'll stroll over Vogelsang Pass then make camp along the 
Merced River a ways beyond.  Depending on how far we 
get, we'll probably move camp then continue on and climb 
the peak on the following day.  Monday will find us beating 
feet most of the way out of there, and I

expect our triumphal march will conclude early on Tuesday.  
This is a very scenic and remote section of the Sierra, and 
a chance to meet a distant and not oft-visited mountain

*** Four Gables
Peak:	Four Gables  12,720', Class 2
Dates:	July 8-9 (Sat/Sun)
Map(s):	Mt Darwin, Mt. Tom; 7.5'
Leader:		Debbie Benham (h) 650/964-0558, deborah4@pacbell.net
CoLeader:	wanted

We'll hike over Piute Pass and camp in the moonscape of 
Humphries Basin at Desolation Lake. Summit Sunday, then 
hike out the same day. Permit for 8.

Backpacking experience required.  Asking $10 deposit; fully 
refundable attrailhead. Questions? please contact leader.

*** Dana & Gaylor
Peak:	Mt Dana   13,057	Gaylor Peak   11,004'
Dates:	July 22-23 (Sat/Sun)
Maps:	Yosemite National Park Topo;	Tuolumne Meadows 15'
Leader(s):	Debbie Benham  h) 650/964-0558	deborah4@pacbell.net
	Chris MacIntosh h) 650/325-7841	cmaci@attglobal.net

Come day hike Dana and Gaylor in the gorgeous high 
meadows of Tuolumne.

Newcomers are most welcome. We've reserved campsites 
in Tuolumne Meadows Campground for a total of ten 
hikers. Cost per person for two nights (Fri&Sat) is $6; 
payable in advance and non-refundable. Any questions? 
please contact leaders.

*** Mt. Goddard
Peak:	Mt. Goddard (13,568 ft.), East Ridge 
Rating:	Class 3
Dates:	Sat-Mon; September 2-4
Contacts:	Cecil Anison (cecilann@earthlink.net)
	Kai Wiedman (650)347-5234

Mt. Goddard is one of the dominant peaks of the High 
Sierra.  This solitary giant's position west of the crest 
makes it visible from many points in the range. We will 
climb the more interesting East Ridge, first climbed by 
Walter Starr, Jr., who wrote the definitive guide to the John 
Muir trail.  You may recall that he died while attempting a 
solo climb of Michael Minaret and his body was later 
recovered by none other than Norman Clyde.  This climb 
entails a very demanding 40 mile round trip.

*** Tenth Annual Yosemite Family Camp
Peaks:	To be determined (Looking for 	hike/climb leaders)
Dates:	September 23-24
Contact:	Cecil Anison (cecilann@earthlink.net)	(408)395-4525

The trip will be in Yosemite Valley this year and family 
members are welcome, as usual. Plan on lots of fun as we 
hike, climb, explore, and commune in this spectacular 
setting. Space is limited to three reserved campsites so be 
sure to sign up early.

Mt. Conness & Ragged - July 24-25, 1999

Peak: Mt Conness 12,590, Ragged Peak 10,912
Trip Leaders: Bob Suzuki, Bonnie Ruesch

Participants: Mike McDermitt, John Wilkinson, Bill Kirkpatrick, 
Doug Ross, Joan Marshall, Tanya Knaus, Greg Cotress, Will Doyle

Ah, my first PCS trip and what more could you ask for? 
Beautiful, crystal clear weather, a scenic hike, two picturesque 
peaks, and wonderful company. Perfect.

Doug and I met up in San Jose and fought our way through very 
heavy traffic into Yosemite, then up to Tuolomne Meadows. We 
saw several news vans on the way in and heard the bad news 
from some of the news guys about the woman who had been 
murdered. That really was a tragic note to start the weekend. 

The next morning we met up with Bob and the rest of the group, 
and got packed up and on the trail by 8:30. Not bad for an 8:00 
start time. The hike in was beautiful, crossing two majestic 
meadows with increasingly spectacular views of the peaks of the 
Sierra. Mike impressed everyone with his knowledge of peak 
names and heights. 

Our first stop of the day was Ragged Peak, which we reached at 
about 11:00. We left the trail just before it tends downhill in a 
broad, open area with many boulders and headed to the saddle 
between Ragged and the rest of the crest. From there we could 
look down the steep slope to the Young Lakes and Conness. This 
area provides some great views of the southwest face of Conness. 
It's hard to believe that Harding made his way up that, let alone 
that Peter Croft can free-solo it before breakfast. 

We then worked our way up to the summit block of Ragged. It's 
easy class 2 to reach the block, but the block itself seemed to be 
harder, maybe 3 or 4. Bob, Doug, and Mike all scrambled up to 
sit on top of the block, while I contented myself with scrambling 
up and touching the top. Does "tagging" a summit count as a 

Survey says . . .  nope. I'll come back. 

The group then began a traverse of Ragged back towards the trail, 
with several members of the party taking a lower route, and 
others scrambling along the ridge. The climbing here is very fun, 
but it's definitely faster and less tedious to traverse lower down. 

Bob wanted to scramble up the southern summit as well, which 
was even trickier than the first one. Looked like kind of a hairy 
downclimb, but both Bob and Doug managed it without a 
problem. At this point, several people mentioned that it was  
probably time to get moving, as it was getting on towards 1:00. 

We headed back down to the packs and moved along the Young 
Lakes trail, which skirts the rest of Ragged Peak, then climbs 
back up to lower Young Lake. This was a beautiful sight, with  a 
ring of mountains reflected in its cool clear waters.

Doug encouraged us to head up to Upper Young Lake,  which had 
fewer bears and mosquitoes. Fewer bears because they were 
usually too full from the fare at lower Young Lake, and less 
mosquitoes well, we'll see.

We reached our campsite at Upper Young Lake around 4:30-5:00, 
after a very nice hike around Lower Young lake, and up past 
Middle Young Lake , which is pretty marshy. We passed Middle  
and headed still further up.  Upper Young Lake is a beautiful 
area, very open and with wonderful views of Ragged Peak and 
the surrounding cirque. 

We decided to camp on the side of this lake. At this time, and 
until 7:30 or so, the  mosquitoes were still pretty thick. 

We sat and ate, enjoying the views and the still warm sunshine. 
Tanya and Greg had brought fairly full packs, and now we found 
out why. They had with them a shower, an oven, wonderful food, 
and a bottle of wine. Wow. Wild rumors flew around camp the 
next morning that they had also brought a hot tub which they 
cranked up later that night, but these were never confirmed. 

Doug and I shared the last of the bottle of wine, which Tanya and 
Greg were kind enough to share, in the dimming alpenglow. I 
then went promptly to sleep, feeling the effects of a long day and 
the increased effectiveness of wine at that altitude.

The night was beautiful, warmer than it had been down in 
Tuolomne Meadows the night before, and the moonlight was 
bright enough to see by. 

The next morning an early wake up and breakfast saw us off to an 
on-time start, right around 6:30. We headed up through more 
open terrain, then into a stand of forest that  led us up further into 
an open, boggy area. The best way to get around this, as several 
members of the party saw immediately and others only realized 
after, is to head to the left side of the valley and get on the trail 
that heads up the scree slope. We gathered our forces and headed 
up this slope towards the creek coming down from Conness' 
melting snowfields. 

The long slog alongside the creek up scree and gravel was 
probably the greatest physical challenge of the day. We continued 
gamely up this slope until we hit the first of two snowfields. 
These were heavily featured and did not require the use of an ice 
axe, and we dispatched them without a problem,. After the 
second snowfield, we skirted around a broad, deep valley which 
led us to the summit area of Conness. 

A quick trip across a broad snowfield brought us to the open area 
right before the summit ridge. There were a number of structures 
here, including stone mortar work which we found most 
impressive at this altitude. From here we began the scramble up 
to the summit. This is all Class 2, with sometimes impressive 
exposure. This route has been heavily engineered, with steps laid 
out and more difficult moves "improved" to turn what might have 
been a Class 3 climb into something a little less imposing. Doug 
and wondered if this might have been the work of climbing 
guides of an earlier era. Or maybe just some civic minded 
marmots. Hard to say. 

We reached the summit around 10 a.m. This is a wonderful spot, 
with stunning views of the High Sierra north to Tower peak, and 
south past Mt. Lyell. The summit area was big enough to fit 
everyone who had made the trip up the summit ridge: Bob, 
Bonnie, Joan, Mike, Doug, Bill, John, and me. Mike asked me 
what the difference between this 

and rock climbing is- to my surprise I found that peak scrambling 
can be just as thrilling as rock climbing, because while the moves 
are easy, the lack of a rope leaves less margin for error. Both are 
rewarding in their own ways, but peak scrambling does allow for 
more company along the way. 

After a leisurely lunch in a protected area just below the summit, 
we began our way back down.  Right before we headed down, 
Bill turned to us and said "Samuel Johnson said that being 
sentenced to execution in a fortnight focuses the mind 
wonderfully," which set the tone for everyone carefully tiptoeing 
back across the summit  ridge. We began the long, uneventful 
slog back down scree slopes to camp. John, Mike, Doug and I 
were a ways ahead of everyone when we reached the broad 
marshy area at the bottom of the scree slope. The mosquitoes 
were quite bad here, so we decided to head  back to camp. On the 
way down through a thick stand of forest, I lost John and Mike as 
they turned a corner. Hm. No problem, I'll just keep on heading 
downhill. Well, I went a little too far downhill, as it turned out, 
and when I began to realize I'd been in these woods too long I 
caught sight of Ragged peak. 

Which was not in the right place. Oh wait, I wasn't in the right 
place. I had to head back up hill, giving myself a couple of bonus 
miles for zoning out and heading way too far down hill. I met up 
with the rest of the party, caught my breath for thirty seconds,  
packed up, filled my water bottles, and we were on our way. We 
left Young Lakes right around 1:00 Next time, I'm going to pay a 
lot more attention on the way up, so the way down doesn't throw 
me for a loop. 

The hike back was pleasant, with clear sunshine seeing us on our 
way. The trail does have several significant uphill portions in this 
direction, which can be a little disheartening, especially if you got 
lost, and were pretty tired, and had to work the next day, and 
weren't used to the altitude. Nobody else seemed to mind. 

We made it back to the parking lot around 5:00. Bob and Bonnie 
organized a wonderful trip, and we were all grateful to them. Two 
great peaks, outstanding companions, and no problems. My first 
PCS trip, and I get to write the trip report a privilege or a form of 
hazing? I'll figure it out soon.

-- William Doyle

Tinker Knob from Coldstream Canyon - Sunday, April 30, 2000

Mike McDermitt and I climbed Tinker Knob from Coldstream 
Canyon.  We dropped Tim Hult off at the base of Mt Judah for his 
solo Sugar Bowl to Squaw traverse, then drove back around to 
Donner State Memorial Park to start our climb.  

The trailhead is slightly different depending on the season.  May 
to October, drive through the park proper, but November through 
April, the road through the park is gated, but there is an open-
gated road just 1/4 mile east of the park entrance.  Follow the 
high quality graded dirt road until the well marked junction to 
Tinker Knob, then turn right on the rugged jeep track.  Beyond 
the junction, the road might be too rough for ordinary passenger 
cars.  After 1-1/2 miles, the road crosses a small stream, then a 
couple hundred yards later, it reaches the main watercourse, just 
inside Horseshoe Bend, a hairpin curve in the SP railroad tracks.  
In the springtime, that second creek crossing is the end of the 
drivable road.  

We parked there, at about 6300 feet.  We crossed Coldstream 
Creek up on the railroad tracks.  We marched up a tangled braid 
of logging roads and deer trails, staying east of the creek.  There 
was about 75% snow cover at the lower elevations, and more 
snow higher on the north facing route, but we never needed the 
snowshoes we carried.  The creek peters out a few hundred feet 
below the 8949 foot summit, in plain view of the peak.  

On the way up, we came upon some hefty paw prints, and a piece 
of mountain lion scat, filled with fur and bone.  

We saw Tim skiing to Tinker Knob from Anderson Peak, we 
shouted to him, and he waited a few minutes for us to catch up.  
We chatted for a few minutes before he continued with his ski 
tour.  We wondered if Tim would also find Dee, Rick, and Arun 
on their day climb of nearby Granite Chief.  (He didn't.)  

The view was eternal.  To the north we could see all the way to 
Lassen, and to the south, we saw the Sweetwater Range of 
Nevada.  On the summit, we even heard the rumble of the 
American River far below.  

Our descent route was similar to our ascent.  4-1/4 hours up, 1 
hour on top, and 2-1/4 hours down.  

-- Aaron Schuman

Feather and Tar, A Peak too Far - Feather Peak, (13,242 ft) - May 26/27/28 2000.

Standing on a snowy bench, high above a frozen and snow bound 
lake, as we gazed in awe at the long cuoloir that was flanked one 
one side by an impressive rock wall, we heard our leader Kai 
speak up, 'I think I am going to go into four wheel drive here'.

But I am getting a little ahead of myself. On Saturday, 26th May 
00, by 10am or so, led by Kai Wiedman, our leader, we (Hal 
Tompkins, Charles Schafer, Pete Davison, Pat Callery and 
myself, Arun Mahajan) set out on the Pine Creek Trailhead in the 
strange town of Rovana, trying to convince ourself as we kicked 
dust and dried horse dung out of the way under a warm sun, that 
this was actually Memorial Day.

The snow cover was spotty but increased as we went past the 
switchbacks that overlook the Tungsten Mine with the sound of 
the swollen cataract as it crashed down nearby, making music for 
the ears. The logs made the two stream crossings easy and in 
about four and half hours, we were scouting out our individual 
tent/bivy sites amidst the ubiquitous horse stuff in the trees at the 
far right corner of Upper Pine Lake. Camp site was at 10200 ft.

By 6.45am on Sunday we were on our way, making detours and 
hopping over logs and walking over the frozen snow bridges to 
cross the fast flowing stream and it's many streamlets. The going 
was steep as we crossed the first pass that took us to a plateau 
that was completely snow covered and we stared awestruck at the 
long and continuous face of Merriam. But then we turned our 
attention to the equally stunning visage of Feather Peak, our 

It's left side dropped off sharply into a jagged ridge that had a 
steep col that Kai said was to be our descent route. The hard 
morning snow made me think that a descent on that col was 
impossible and so I suggested that we could stick close to the 
rock face instead of doing the traverse under the col with it's long 

'You all worry too much' said Hal. 'You have been taking too 
much ganja'  said Kai. Both of them obviously implying that the 
snow would soften soon. We dropped down to one of the large 
Royce lakes and then simply walked across it as the snow was 
deep enough over the layer of ice on the lake. Then we did the 
steep climb to the top of a bench that placed us right below the 
long cuoloir that was our ascent route.

It was then that we heard Kai say, 'I think I am going to go into 
four wheel drive here'. It was a signal to don crampons but Hal 
did not see the need and suggested that he and Pete lead the way 
and let us know if crampons would be necessary.

Hal and Pete led the way and climbed fast and they made great 
steps for us. Kai told me that he would rather have Hal on this 
trip than the Swedish Bikini Team....hmmm....

The snow was perfect and we were sinking a foot and half into it 
sometimes and the cuoloir got steeper near the top but everybody 
did fine and within an hour of having started from the bench, we 
were drinking in the fantastic sight of the Seven Gables at the top 
of the cold and windy cuoloir. Another few minutes of easy class-
3 work got us to the summit of Feather Peak where, the register 
indicated that we were the first to summit this year.

We spent about thirty minutes at the top and the views were 
extensive but it was Humphreys and Bear Creek Spire that really 
caught the eye. Starting from camp at 6.45am, we had summitted 
at 11am.

We decided to strike for the col between Feather and Royce and 
to that end, descended the steep snow field at the backside of 
Feather. Kai and I continued down over class-2/3 talus and scree 
and then turned left towards the col whereas the rest, led by Hal 
struck a more direct route by going over directly left, staying just 
below the ridge line.

As we looked over to them, we thought that ours was the easier 
way and theirs, the sportier.

We met up at the col and Pete, always strong, decided to continue 
on to the summit of Royce alone. The col looked steep and 
intimidating, but Hal simply walked down it and we all followed. 
Again, the soft and deep snow made it easier to down climb, 
despite the angle.

By 3 pm, we were back at camp. Pat and I set out back towards 
the trailhead at 4 and making good time, we were back at the cars 
at 6.30 pm. Kai reports that even he and Pete got out not much 
later than us on the same evening, Sunday.

Thanks to Hal for leading us to the summit and to Kai for setting 
this trip up and for leading and making us one of the privileged 
few who climb Feather Peak.

-- Arun Mahajan

Following the Giants - Eichorn Pinnacle and Cathedral Peak - June 6, 2000

We left the trailhead carrying heavy packs.  I had my full rock 
climbing rack and Arun was lugging his 50 meter crag rope.  
Following the Bud's Creek trail we soon were in view of 
Cathedral Peak's Eastern slops, which were mostly cover with 
snow.  Climbing over the ridge north of Cathedral Peak we could 
finally see our destination, the Eichorn Pinnacle.

When I first laid eyes on the pinnacles I thought I will never be 
able to climb it.  From the most common view it is a tall and 
narrow pencil with vertical sides and overhanging front face.  
There are a couple flaring and off width cracks on the face which 
look impossible, at least to me.  How could Jules Eichorn climb 
this unroped was beyond me.  Of course, later I have learned that 
the real route goes on the other side on the Pinnacle and is rated 
5.4, and from then on, the Pinnacle was high on my to-do list.

Looking at the Pinnacle from the ridge North of Cathedral Peak 
revels that the Northwest corner is less steep and the rock face 
looks rich with features, so maybe it is a 5.4.

We setup our first belay at a ledge below and to the right of the 
ridge proper, and I started the traverse to the other side of the 
pinnacle.  It's easy going, and the place where one should start 
climbing up is obvious.

It's a rib of broken up chunks stuck to the main rock, but the 
chunks are a bit loose and they get thin pretty quickly.  I throw a 
wire nut in a solid crack to the left and started climbing.  Soon, a 
serious of horizontal cracks appeared in the main rock and I 
moved to that.  There where a couple of fixed pitons, of which I 
clipped one and continued to a wide ledge.  This would likely be 
the belay station of which I read in the route description, but I did 
not stop there.  Facing back towards the summit, now looking 
East there where 3 main cracks.  I ruled the right one too 
difficult, the center one would go as a squeeze chimney with a 
hand jam, but will be harder then 5.4 for sure.  I couldn't see well 
in to the left most crack, so I throw a cam in the center crack and 
stemmed up.  Soon my hand landed on something nice and solid, 
and I was able to pull up.  A bit more class 4 scrambling got me 
to the top just as Arun started yelling that he is running out of 

Why did I pass the belay station?  The Eichorn Pinnacle is one of 
the most photogenic sites in the Sierras, and there were only 
Arun and me climbing.

So when I got to the top, Arun untied and ran up the ridge to take 
my picture.  After I brought him up, I rappelled down, and ran up 
the ridge to take Arun's picture.  Then he came down.

We had some time to kill, so we packed our stuff and went up the 
ridge towards Cathedral Peak.  Arun took my cam set and lead 
the exposed class 4 rout to the top to practice placing natural 
protection on a lead.  In the process, he used me entire set of 
Friends and one Predator, all in the name of practice.  Following 
him, I realized I forgot to tell him that the old Friends with the 
solid stem can only be placed vertically.  He was still safe though.

On the way down, it occurred to me that both of our routs where 
first climbed by giants: John Muir on Cathedral Peak and Jules 
Eichorn on the Eichorn Pinnacle.  And they both climbed 

Register:  The register on Eichorn Pinnacle is in bad shape.  The 
register book is gone.  Instead there were a few scraps of pages 
which once were photo copies of the route description from John 
Moynier's book.  There were some entries dated back to 1998, 
but none in 2000.  Are we the first for the year?  The only writing 
implements where a few short pieces of graphite.

The squeeze rivets on one of the hinges of the fancy register box 
have both broken off.  It will take a small drill with a 1/8"-3/16" 
bit to clear the holes so new rivets can be placed.

Conditions:  Snow line on Northern slopes was 9,500 to 10,500.  
we brought or used no crampons nor ice axes and didn't need 
them as the snow was soft enough for kicking nice steps.  And 
snowshoes are certainly not needed.  The afternoon snow melt 
swelled the creeks turning a simple hop over partially exposed 
rocks in the morning into a serious business in the afternoon.

Participants: Arun Mahajan and Ron Karpel (scribe)

-- Arun Mahajan

Bloody, Laurel, Morrison - June 3-4, 2000

The cast of characters: Bob Suzuki (fearless leader), Sam Wilkie 
(fearless coleader), Dee Booth, Nancy Fitzsimmons, Debbie 
Bulger, Joan Marshall, and Joe Budman

With the low snow year, we were able to drive most of the way on 
the road leading to Bloody on Saturday morning (directions can 
be found in Arun Mahajan's trip report on Bloody), saving several 
miles and about 1500 feet of walking.  Thanks to Bob and Debbie 
for getting us up there!  The snow began just after the switchback 
in the road, less than half a mile from the beginning of the trail 
(just before the crest of the road).  We followed the somewhat 
faint trail in the direction of the saddle between Bloody and 
Laurel, crossing a few snowfields en route, still somewhat firm in 
the morning.

From there, it was a straightforward, somewhat tedious, hike to 
the summit along the east ridge.  At times you could choose to 
walk along some snow patches instead of the rock, but the scree 
is quite firm along this route.  I had done Bloody last October via 
the north slope (just to the east of the couloir), and the east ridge 
is a much better route! Views from the top were impressive: 
Ritter/Banner, the minarets, Koip/Kuna off to the north, and Red 
Slate dominating to the southwest. The mountains around had 
just the right amount of snow on them to make the scenery 
especially nice. Some skiers had also hiked to the top, and after 
watching them make the first few turns, we started our descent 
down the ridge.

Back at the Laurel-Bloody saddle, Bob, Sam, Dee, and I (our first 
names have 3 letters) had extra energy to waste, so we hiked the 
1,000 extra vertical feet up to Laurel.  The scree/loose rock is 
only slightly miserable on the ascent, but very miserable on the 
descent despite the low angle(no sandy areas to cruise down). 
The view towards the Owens valley is better from Laurel than 
from Bloody, but Bloody has a better view of everything else. The 
only real reason to climb it became apparent when we descended 
and drove to the campground by Convict Lake for the night: 
Laurel is a very beautiful peak from this direction (never mind 
that its other side is a garbage dump!).  Its other claim to fame is 
that the first properly belayed/roped climb in the sierra occurred 
here, on the southeast gully route (class 4). 

Evening temperatures stayed well above freezing, and at 8:15 on 
Sunday morning the hike to Morrison began.  Previous 
descriptions make the climb seem like a really miserable slog, 
but most of the route is on solid ground with great scenery.  We 
started along the jeep road/trail near the fee area for the convict 
lake campground, and gained the ridge by following the paths of 
least resistance when the trail became too faint (this involves less 
bushwhacking than following the river gully all the way).  Once 
atop the ridge, we followed a dirt road (the one that goes towards 
the gully, not up a hillside), until that merged with the stream.  
No water was flowing in the lower part of the creekbed and the 
footing was very solid.  There were several large snowpatches 
along the creek that we climbed through, hiking next to the river 
(which had some water running in the upper part) when it wasn't 
snow-covered.  The slope becomes more and more gradual as the 
river turns to the right, and nowhere is the sage/brush that you 
have to hike through at all annoying. Eventually we found 
ourselves at the small lake (on the map) from which the steeper 
climbing would begin.  The view towards Mt. Baldwin and 
Morrison from this lake merited a rest stop, from which we chose 
our route of ascent. A use trail leads up through talus and then we 
hiked through some snowfields (soft enough to kick good steps by 
late morning), eventually regaining the use trail.  The top ~1000 
feet of the climb have loose rock, though we were able to avoid 
much of it by following snow or easy 3rd class ledges.  The view 
from the top was again splendid, and we made the hike out in 2-
2.5 hours.  Seeing the impressive face of Mt. Morrison as we 
began the drive home was the final reward to another fun 
weekend in the Sierra.

-- Joe Budman

Johnson and Gilbert - June 10, 2000

World renown mountaineer Dee Booth successfully guided six 
climbers to the top of Mt Johnson on June 10, 2000.  At the 
summit of Mt Johnson the entire team met Paul Wilms, a French 
speaking Belgian, who announced when meeting Dee, "Dee 
Booth?  I know zat name, I have seen zat name in many Sierra 

The summitting team included Dee, Bojan Silic, Landa 
Robillard, Kelly Maas, Fi Verplanke, Maxym Runov, and Rick 
Booth.  The weather was perfect and the time from the lower 
Treasure Lakes was about four hours.  An ice axe is 
recommended at this time of year since there was a lot of snow 
on the southeast slope of the mountain.

On Sunday the group headed off for Mt Gilbert.  Again, Dee lead 
the group of now eight individuals to the summit of Mt Gilbert.  
Since it was unlikely any new Belgians would be discovered on 
the summit of Mt Gilbert we brought Paul with us.  We also 
added Alex Sapoznikov who had headed back to the car on 
Saturday looking for his wayward wallet.  The biggest challenge 
was Treasure Col which had one short steep section.

Ice axe recommended.  Thanks to Kelly for kicking steps to the 
col.  The weather was perfect and the time to the summit was 
about 4.5 hours.

Summitting Mt Gilbert were Dee, Bojan, Landa, Kelly, Fi, Paul, 
Maxym, Alex, and Rick.

This was a great trip and for several people it was either their 
first time to the Sierra high country or their best elevation gain.

-- Rick Booth

Yeah, Right, A Beginner's Trip! - June 17-18, 2000

Participants were John Hawley, Ed Lulofs, David Lulofs, Chris 
Franchuk, Ethan Karpel, Ron Karpel, Steve Eckert,and Rebecca Eckert

Ron Karpel's "easy" trip to Vogelsang sounded like the perfect 
opportunity to get Rebecca up her first Sierra peak. She's been 
backpacking a few times, but has never stood on a real summit. 
Moderate pace, class 2, good trail all the way to camp...

The hike up Rafferty Creek from the Dog Lake trailhead was 
uneventful, and mostly mosquito-free, but we took lots of breaks 
and even had a nap break just below Tuolumne Pass (see 
h.jpg) so people could adjust to the altitude and lighten their food 
bags. Between the pass and the Vogelsang High Sierra Camp, 
Ethan "hit the wall" and Ron rested with him while the rest of us 
found a good campsite. Everyone made it to camp on the north 
side of Fletcher Lake in plenty of time to snooze before dinner.

Sunday morning we left the teenagers and Ed in camp and 
headed across  Fletcher Creek (see 
ek.jpg) and around Vogelsang Lake to Vogelsang Pass... on snow 
about half the time. Rebecca had never climbed on snow before, 
but it was low angle and very good snow conditions. From the 
pass, Ron said we just needed to get around some steep stuff (see 
and it was class 2 to the summit. Yeah, right. It stayed easy class 
3, but there were steep places that made some uncomfortable and 
there were loose places that made the going slow. The summit 
block itself is definitely not class 3 from the south side, and some 
begging/pushing/pulling was required to get everyone onto the 
actual summit.

I should note ONCE AGAIN that this was Rebecca's first Sierra 
peak, and she hung in there when it got tougher than she 
expected. At the top, her smiling face with Half Dome in the 
background proved it was worth the effort.(see 
The register is full, but it seems like this peak gets so much 
traffic that a new one will fill up in a couple of years.

As we picked our way down through the scrub pines, all were 
dreading descending the east ridge again. I trotted over to a snow 
chute I had been scoping out as we climbed, and tossed a heavy 
rock into it to verify that it was soft in the afternoon sun. The 
runout wasn't perfect, but everyone was agreeable to try going 
down it once I cut a few steps and verified that it wasn't icy. Ron 
actually kicked steps the whole way down, while I walked 
slightly below the less experienced people (escorting them one at 
a time down the steepest part). Ice axes would have added to the 
comfort level, but weren't really necessary.

Once the angle eased off a bit, I sat in the snow and had Rebecca 
sit behind me and hang onto my pack. We did a tandem glissade 
(her first) with me doing the steering and braking. Her part was 
to hang on and enjoy the ride! Ron said later that he relaxed 
when he heard her whooping with glee, but everyone else walked 
all the way down. This chute was on the north side of the east 
ridge, leading directly into the Vogelsang Lake drainage.(see 
more direct route, which rises from the lake to the north ridge, 
had a cornice at the top - but the peak is easier from the north 
than from the south (where the east ridge takes you) when the 
cornice isn't present.

We had talked about doing Fletcher in the afternoon, but our 3pm 
return to camp wiped out all thoughts of adding anything to the 
day. We broke camp and hiked out (7 miles) in just over 4 hours, 
reaching the cars at about 8pm. 13 hours of climbing and 
backpacking, 3rd class rock, kicking steps in 30 degree snow, 
glissading... yep, all stock parts of a beginner trip! The only 
things we missed out on were wading a waist deep stream and 
dodging lightning on the peak.

Despite my friendly jabs, Ron did a great job leading this trip. He 
didn't rush anyone, he took breaks whenever needed, he helped 
when people needed a hand, and made it fun even for those who 
were having trouble with the terrain.

-- Steve Eckert

Private Trips

Private trips may be submitted directly to the Scree Editor, but 
are not insured, sponsored, or supervised by the Sierra Club. 
They are listed here because they may be of interest to PCS members. 

*** Darwin
Peak:	Darwin (13,830) Class 3-4
Date:	July 1-4
Contact:	Chris Kramar (510)-796-6651

Darwin, king of the Evolution crest, is one of the finest 
summits in the Sierra. Walter Starr, Jr. wrote that the 
Evolution country was "the region where the grand 
crescendo of the Sierra touches at once the heart of the 
mountaineer and the artist."

We will start at North Lake and take the Lamarck Col route 
to Darwin Canyon to position ourselves at the foot of the 
glacier.  Expect snow and rock travel that may be roped at 
times. Mt. Mendel will also be attempted.

*** South Lake/Bishop Pass
Peak:		Mt. Goode, Gilbert, Johnson Black Giant, Mt. Solomons, and Mt. Goddard
Date:	July 1-4
Contact: 	Tim Hult 408-970-0760,  Timdhult@aol.com

This trip will get us into an area loaded with class 2 and 3 
peaks. Expect long days and miles.  Early season 
conditions may require ice axe and crampons.  Extensive 
snow coverage may turn this into a ski trip! 

*** Rainier via the Kautz Glacier
Peak:	Mt Rainer, Snow, Ice, Glacier, Altitude
Dates:	July 5th-9th 2000 .
Leaders:	George Van Gordon: 408-779-2320, gvangord@mhu.k12.ca.us
	Ron Karpel: ronny@karpel.org

This is a private trip, not affiliated with the Sierra Club.

The Kautz Glacier route using Camp Hazard as high camp 
is much less traveled then the normal Disappointment 
Cleaver route, which is likely to be extremely crowded at 
this time of year.  This trip involves both glacier travel and a 
short moderately steep alpine ice climbing (around 45%).  
We will travel roped up on the glacier and use pickets and 
ice screws for belay on the steep ice section.

Participants must be experienced in using ice axe and 
crampons for snow travel and have previous training in 
glacier travel and crevasse rescue techniques.

*** The Isherwood Special 
Peaks:		Mt. Rose (10,776) with optional climb of Mt. Tallac (9,735) 
Dates:	July 7-9, 2000 
Leaders:	Bill and Dana Isherwood  dana@isherwoods.net
	 (925)254-0739 (h) or (925)423-5058 (Bill at work) 

Climb Mt. Rose, Tahoe Basin's third highest peak, and 
leave your sleeping bag, tent, backpack, etc. at home. Join 
us for a decadent weekend at the private Carmel Ski Lodge 
in Truckee. Spend Friday and Saturday nights at the Lodge. 
Climb Mt. Rose Saturday and celebrate your ascent at a 
fun filled "happy hour", followed by a pot luck barbeque, 
and your favorite climbing videos Saturday night. Optional 
climb of Mt. Tallac on Sunday. Limited to 12. Cost: 
$15/person/night (private rooms for couples). For 
reservations, call Bill or Dana Isherwood .

*** Palisade Crest
Peak:	Palisade Crest 13520', Class 4
Date:	July 14-16
Contact:	Peter Maxwell (408) 737 9770, peterm@aoraki.dtc.hp.com

We'll start off hiking the South Fork of Big Pine Creek, 
heading to camp at Elinore Lake.  This hike in involves a 
large amount of boulder hopping.  The route up the peak, 
which will occupy a long day, will be the Northwest Ridge, 
which leads off from Scimitar Pass.  There is considerable 
exposure along the Sierra crest between the pass and the 
base of the roped portion of the climb.

This is a class 4 peak for experienced climbers only.  The 
trip is private and participants should be known to the 
organizer, or be able to be vouched for by someone known 
to the organizer.

I'm going to be away until May 31, but send me email if 
you're interested.

*** Polemonium Peak
Peak:	Polemonium Peak (14,000+')
Maps:	Mt Goddard 15' & North Palisade 7 1/2' topos
Class:	4, rock
Dates:	July 21-23 (Fri-Sun)
Contact:	Bill Isherwood, w: 925-423-5058, h: 925-254-0739, bi@llml.gov

Polemonium Peak is one of those Sierra points over 
14,000' that can be debated as whether it should be 
considered a separate mountain or not. 

But here's a chance to hedge your bets, if you want to 
make sure you get all the 14'ers.  (Note that this is not the 
peak labled 'Polemonium' on the North Palisade 7 1/2' 
map, but is the high point just south of the U-notch.)  
Starting at the South Lake trailhead, we will go over Bishop

Pass and make camp at one of the lakes in Dusy Basin.  
From here, there Is some high traversing over talus and 
ascend the Polemonium Glacier to reach the SE ridge 
route, as described by R.J. Secor.  With good route finding 
there should only be a couple of pitches of 4th class, but 
everyone should be experienced in ice ax, crampons, and 
5th class climbing, and prepared for rappelling and possible 
off-route contingencies.  Still looking for an assistant leader.

*** Colosseum
Peak:	Colosseum (12,473, class 1)
Date:	August 19 - 20, 2000
Contact:	Charles Schafer, (408) 354-1545
Contact:	Bob Evans, robtwevans@email.msn.com Days: (408) 998-2857

Saturday: Sawmill Pass trailhead (4,586) over Sawmill 
Pass (11,347)  to Woods Lake (10,600), about 10 miles.

Sunday: Bag Colosseum (12,473) via class 1 S.W. slopes 
and out.  Cedric Wright an option depending on participants 
and circumstances. $5/person permit fee reimbursement.

*** Khumbu region of Nepal
Peak:	Island Pek or Mera Peak
Date:	Oct-Nov 2000
Contact: 	Tim Hult 408-970-0760,  Timdhult@aol.com

Four week trip into a spectacular and storied region of the 
Himalaya. These are "minimal" trekking peaks open to 
qualified class 3 peak baggers with snow experience.   
Views of Everest and all those places you've heard about.  
Experience and compatibility with groups on long 
"wilderness" trips a must.  

*** Argentina
Date: January 2001
Peaks:	A Seven Summit Mountain                 Aconcaqua  6959 m
Contact: 	Warren Storkman, 650-493-895

*** Denali
Peak:	Denali, 20,320 ft.
Date:	May-June 2001
Contact: 	Tim Hult 408-970-0760,  Timdhult@aol.com

Been there twice but unfortunately haven't done it yet as 
weather and sickness (the flu) have kept me off the 
summit. Third time a charm?  Looking for qualified partners 
for this major, no nonsense peak.  Must have extensive 
experience in the following: high altitude climbing (18,000 ft 
+), excellent winter camping skills and equipment, proven 
ability to get along with partners on a multi-week trip. Ice 
climbing and crevasse rescue will be taught if required. 
Prefer those with the ability to ski or willingness to learn 
how to ski with a pack on - need NOT be an expert!  
Serious inquires only.


Scree is the monthly journal of the Peak Climbing 
Section of the Sierra Club, Loma Prieta Chapter.

Our mirror website is
and our official website is

Elected Officials

	Rick Booth / pcs-chair@climber.org
	408-354-7291 home
	237 San Mateo Avenue, Los Gatos, CA 95030

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	408-354-7291 home
	237 San Mateo Avenue, Los Gatos, CA 95030

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	510-659-1413 home

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	650-943-7532 home
	223 Horizon Avenue, Mountain View, CA 94043-4718

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	650-508-0500 home
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Subscriptions and Email List Info

Hard copy subscriptions are $10. Subscription applications and checks 
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Rock Climbing Classifications

The following trip classifications are to assist you in choosing trips for 
which you are qualified. No simple rating system can anticipate all 
possible conditions.
	Class 1: Walking on a trail.
	Class 2: Walking cross-country, using hands for balance.
	Class 3: Requires use of hands for climbing, rope may be used.
	Class 4: Requires rope belays.
	Class 5: Technical rock climbing.

Deadline for submissions to the next Scree is Sunday 7/23/2000.
Meetings are the second Tuesday of each month.

"Vy can't ve chust climb?" - John Salathe

First Class EMail - Dated Material as soon as it's published!