Ascent of Sherpa Peak on 2018-06-23

Climber: Tyler Stockdale

Others in Party:Brian Hill
Luke Helgeson
Date:Saturday, June 23, 2018
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Sherpa Peak
    Elevation:8605 ft / 2622 m

Ascent Trip Report

Successful ascent of the West Ridge with Brian Hill, Jordan Small, and Luke Helgeson.

We hiked to an Ingalls creek camp via Longs Pass Friday night (7pm to 10pm). Had a 3:45 rise and 5:00 set off for the climb. It took 4 hours from camp to reach the col.

Very little snow on the ground. We crossed two patches on the approach and did not need the ice axes or crampons we took. The axes could have been used to descend the steeper snow on the way back, but there is a route over rock that we found to avoid it.

From the col, we ascended towards climbers left, and made the first pitch anchor in the "Cave" feature (A big old dihedral looking cut in the rock that 4 - 5 climbers can stand in, off belay, comfortably. There is gravel on the ground, and a difficult step down to this platform, which is also a great way of recognizing it). Rope drag and communication was very hard on this pitch, but was managed by setting up a "rope tug" communication style with my partners. From the cave, we kept ascending climbers left (do not go straight upwards from the cave as it cliffs out), and made the pitch 2 anchor on a platform next to a rappel station. From here, we scrambled down to a melting snow gully, and re-roped up before pitching up to a low point on the ridge which leads to the summit. After this, it is a quick scramble to the summit block, where you can either make an anchor on the rappel station, and lead over slab terrain to the true summit, or just be sure with your feet over the super 4th class terrain.

From the summit, it was 6 rappels to the col. We sheared one of our two ropes to the core on the second rappel (after the summit block). The rope was jammed into a crack on the last rappel and was cut when we flicked it out. It slowed us down, but not by much. Climb time col to col was 10 hours. We had pulled the final rope by 7pm, and started our decent at 7:45ish (grumbling about how much our feet hurt from being in sticky shoes all day. Bringing approach shoes next time for the scrambling and rappel on the summit....)

It took another 3 hours from there to descend to camp. It was not an easy route, and we all fell a lot on choss. Navigation in the dark past the meadows is also quite difficult, but its just a race to the creek trail in the end!

Walked out the next day via Beverly Turnpike trail and grabbed the car we had pre parked at the Bean creek TH

2 nights out, 15.3 Miles, 7,400 ft of gain for the whole trip.

I'm making a note for myself to camp high in the gully before the climb. There is a nice bolder for bivouac up there, and would really help prepare the knees before the descent. It's not a pleasant trek down, and it really wiped our party out in a bad way.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:7 ft / 2 m
    Trailhead:8598 ft / 2620 m
    Grade/Class:Class 4, 5.4-5.7
    Quality:10 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Bushwhack, Scramble, Exposed Scramble, Rock Climb
    Gear Used:
Rope, Tent Camp
    Weather:Cool, Breezy, Clear

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