Ascent to Peak 11600-North Couloir in 1996-08

Climber: James Barlow

Others in Party:Chris Tetzloff
Jon Buck
Don Tetzloff
Alan Jensen
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:August, 1996
Ascent Type:No Summit Goal
Point Reached:Peak 11600 - North Couloir
    Elevation:10700 ft / 3261 m

Ascent Trip Report

So, this peak was my first intro to snow climbing in a couloir. On day 3 of our Winds 96 Trip, we headed from Lozier Lakes down to Trail Creek Park and on to Three Forks Park. Here, we crossed the Green River and headed for Tourist Creek. We actually ascended into Tourist Creek well to the south on the boulder-strewn side of the canyon. We stayed well above Tourist Creek on the south side of the drainage until we hit Lake 10,090. We found a spot free of boulders just large enough for 2 tents not too far from the lake and set up camp. It was a rough day. On day 4, we headed almost directly from camp up the westernmost of the 2 couloirs coming off of Peak 11,600+'s north face. We did not have a summit goal, but were learning the finer points of snow climbing, self arrest, and snow protection for roped travel. In the end, we were probably about 1,000 ft shy of the summit, but we got our first taste of real mountaineering. After sliding back into camp, we actually scouted a much larger flat, boulder-free area in the trees just a quarter mile or so upstream from Lake 10,090, and moved camp there. Overall, I remember these few days quite fondly and would go back up Tourist Creek in a heartbeat.

On day 5, we headed down Tourist Creek and tried to follow the Highline Trail to the best of our abilities as it headed back to Green River Lakes. We ended up camping along the trail somewhere between Three Forks Park and Green River Lakes. I remember the area we camped at being full of old growth trees, completely shading the area, plus lots of large trees that had branch-free logs that made for great climbing fun as they overlapped each other like pick-up-stix until we were 20 feet off the ground. We also had our first human encounter here right after dinner. A ranger rode by on horseback near our cooking area and said hi. On day 6, we headed out to the cars and on to the best drive-thru burger joint on Earth in Big Piney. Sadly, this staple of a Wind River backpacker's diet was permanently closed in late 2009 as I learned when I drove through Big Piney in July, 2010.

Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2380 ft / 725 m
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Rope
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:2380 ft / 725 m
    Route:Tourist Creek
    Start Trailhead:8320 ft / 2535 m
Descent Statistics
Ascent Part of Trip: Winds '96 (5 nights total away from roads)

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Porcupine Pass Peak-Porcupine Pass1996-08 a2720 ft / 829 m
2Lozier Lakes Peak1996-08 b1330 ft / 405 m
3Peak 11600-North Couloir1996-08 c2380 ft / 725 m
Total Trip Gain: 6430 ft / 1959 m

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