Mar 2014             Peak Climbing Section, Loma Prieta Chapter, Sierra Club                                    Vol. 48 No. 3 -

General Meeting

Date          Tuesday, March 11

Time          7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

Where       PCC

                  3921 E. Bayshore Road

                  Palo Alto, CA

Program   A Tale Of A Cursed Trip: Jeff and Jesper Try To Conquer Ojos Del Salado

Presenter:  Jesper Schou


In March 2013 Jeff Fisher and Jesper Schou tried to climb Ojos del Salado on the border between Chile and Argentina. Unfortunately they had somehow offended the mountain gods and encountered a series of mishaps. In this presentation we will show slides from the trip and describe some of the many (mis)adventures encountered along the way before the final defeat.


Directions from 101

Exit at San Antonio Road, go east to the first traffic light, turn left and follow Bayshore Rd to the PCC on the corner of Corporation Way. A sign marking the PCC is out front. Park and enter in the back of the building.


Editor's Notes

No trip reports, but plenty of trips coming up! Check out the advanced trip calendar, as well as all the trips listed here. Summer is on the way!


Chair Column

Last month's experiment in trip planning at the general meeting was reasonably successful. Turnout was better than most of our separate trip planning meetings in the last couple of years; also, a few non-leaders attended and suggested trips. Using the projector to show the live advanced trip planning spreadsheet over a wifi connection supported realtime editing and rearrangement of the dates as the conversation evolved. I think it helped everyone visualize what the schedule was going to look like as it developed. We managed to fill nearly every weekend from the beginning of May into late September. Thank you to all who participated.

Building a provisional trip schedule is only the first part, however. Leaders who proposed trips they would lead now need to write up the trip descriptions and send them to Rakesh as soon as possible. You also need to get any required permits. This can be a killer for some trips if not done promptly, as I found out myself recently when trying to get a permit for the popular and highly regulated North Fork of Lone Pine Creek basin (Mt Whitney region). My advice, do it today!

This month's meeting has a special treat. Past Chair Jesper Schou will be visiting from Germany and presenting photos and sharing stories of his and Jeff Fisher's most recent attempt to climb Ojos del Salado, the world's highest active volcano at 22,600'. It will be a great time to catch up with a good friend of the PCS. Join us.


Advanced Trip Schedule

These trips are planned to occur in the Spring and Summer. They are subject to change until they appear on the Chapter schedule, but are listed here for planning purposes. Advanced Trip Schedule.

PCS Trip Calendar

These are required statements.

Note: CST 2087766-40. Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California.

Note: All Sierra Club trips require you to sign a Liability Waiver.

March 30: Roundtop Re-Stalk

Leaders: Arun Mahajan and Terry Cline

June 21 - 22: Crown Point

Leader: Terry Cline

August 16 - 18: Mount Clarence King

Leader: Terry Cline

PCS Trip Details

Roundtop Re-Stalk

Goal: Roundtop,10,381'

Location: Carson Pass Trailhead off Highway-88, about 7 miles east of Kirkwood Ski Resort.

Date: March 30

Leaders: Arun Mahajan and Terry Cline

Rating: Class-2/3 summit block, snow slopes to 30-deg and ski terrain/level intermediate and climbing skins necessary for those on skis.

Spring is in the air and it is time to stalk the barely-forgotten love once again, legal implications notwithstanding.

Join us for this enjoyable day-trip in snow conditions from the Carson Pass trailhead to the summit of Roundtop. You need to plan for a winter daytrip and be suitably equipped. Skis or snowshoes are a must for the approach and ice-axe/crampons for the summit area. You should have prior experience with the use of axe/crampons. A California sno-park permit is needed, per car, to park at the parking lot. You must email the organizers to sign up. Trip logistics are below: Meeting time is 8.30am and we will start walking promptly at 9am.

General gear suggestions: Warm layered clothing, adequate sun/wind protection for head/hands/eyes, food and water for a day in the mountains, personal first-aid etc are the essentials but please do ask the organizers if you have gear questions. Contact Arun Mahajan at  ( and Terry Cline (

Crown Point

Goal: Crown Point, 11,346'

Location: Bridgeport, Hoover Wilderness, northern edge of Yosemite NP

Dates: June 21-22

Leader: Terry Cline

Co-Leader: wanted

Crown Point sits just off the boundary of Yosemite National Park, west of the alpine Sawtooth Ridge playground. Saturday we will hike in from Mono Village at 7100' at Twin Lakes to the beautiful Crown Lake or the higher Snow Lake, depending on time and energy of the group. After 3.9 miles we reach Barney Lake and our first view of the impressive northern scarp of Crown Point dominating the lake below. From there we head up switchbacks to the junction of the Peeler Lake trail and the Rock Island Pass trail and take the latter to reach a campsite 8-9 miles from the trailhead at around 9600' before the pass, which drops one into Yosemite.

Sunday we will climb the class 2 southwest side of Crown Point from Snow Lake, break camp, and return to the cars for the drive home.

Experience in backcountry travel and camping required. Physically fit beginning climbers welcome.

Mt. Clarence King

Goal: Mt Clarence King, 12,905'

Location: Kings Canyon NP, Sixty Lakes Basin, Kearsarge Pass, Independence

Dates: August 16-18

Leader: Terry Cline

Co-Leader: wanted

We'll climb the classic South Face route whose first ascent by Bolton Brown was the hardest American rock climb in the 19th century. Saturday we will hike 7.3 miles over Kearsarge Pass from Onion Valley above Independence to the vicinity of Charlotte Lake and from there 8 miles over Glenn Pass along the Pacific Crest trail to the upper Rae Lakes basin before heading up to the Sixty Lakes Basin. Because of permit camping restrictions, we will camp somewhere between Glenn Pass and the Rae Lakes Basin.

Sunday we will move camp into Sixty Lakes Basin before climbing the exposed class 3 South Face of Clarence King. A light rope will be carried to protect the famously exposed 5.4 summit block move to reach the top. After descending the peak, we will spend the night in the beautiful Sixty Lakes Basin.

Monday we will hike out the way we came.

This climb involves more than 30 miles of hiking and much elevation gain and loss over three passes. Only very fit climbers experienced in exposed class 3, moderate rock climbing, belaying, and rappelling. Restricted by permit to six.

Private Trip Calendar

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

March 8 - 9: Jeff Davis Peak

Leaders: Terry Cline and Lisa Barboza

Mid-Late July: Gannett Peak

Leader: Timothy Hult

Private Trip Details

Jeff Davis Peak

Goal: Jeff Davis Peak: 9065'

Location: SE of Carson Pass

Dates: March 8-9

Leader: Terry Cline

Jeff Davis Peak, 2763m (9065ft), sits in the Mokelumne Wilderness above Charity Valley. This rarely climbed peak's politically incorrect name harks from the days when Confederate sympathizers populated the area in the 1800's.

Saturday we will ski, snowshoe, or hike, depending on snow conditions, up the West Fork of the Carson River in Hope Valley from Highway 88 at 7200ft elevation to a camp in upper Charity Valley; about 8.5 miles. Sunday we will climb Jeff Davis, which is straightforward until we reach the summit area. The summit is a volcanic plug split near its top by a class 4 chimney. We will then break camp and return to the cars. Snow camping and experience in over-snow travel, basic rock climbing, belaying and rappelling required. Depending on conditions, ice axe and crampons may be needed. Limit of six participants.

Leader: Terry Cline, terry_cline AT

Co-leader: Lisa Barboza, Lisa.Barboza AT

Gannett Peak

Goal: Gannett Peak: 13809'

Location: Wyoming

Dates: Mid - Late July

Leader: Timothy Hullt

The approach is 19 miles into the head of Titcomb basin, a spectacular valley surrounded by 12,000' peaks, where after a two day back pack in we camp and wait for ideal weather. 

Then up the scree hill to "glacier pass," down to the Dinwitty Glacier, up the Goose-neck couloir to a knife ridge

that leads to the summit. This is one of the most challenging stats. Weather is a HUGE factor in the success of this climb.  Participants must be up for several continuous days of long miles, high altitude and comfortable with ice ax and crampon work on steep slopes.  Trip will be timed to match the conditions of the couloir, but given the potential for low snow conditions this year, it is thought mid to late July may work.  Interested persons should contact Tim Hult  at timdhult at sbcglobal dot net

Elected Officials


            Terry Cline:

Vice Chair and Trip Scheduler

Rakesh Ranjan:

Treasurer and Membership Roster (address changes)

Yoni Novat:

Publicity Committee Positions

Scree Editor

    Judy Molland /

PCS World Wide Web Publisher
    Joe Baker/

Joining the PCS is easy.  Go to

PCS Announcement Listserv

If you join the PCS Announcement Listserv you will receive announcements and updates of trips and meetings. Use the web page.

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: Climbing using hands for balance.
    Class 3: Climbing requires the use of hands, maybe a rope.
    Class 4: Requires rope belays.
    Class 5: Technical rock climbing.

Trips may also be rated by level of exertion: easy, moderate, strenuous, or extreme.

Deadline for submissions to the next Scree is  Monday, March 24. Meetings are held on the second Tuesday of each month.