|Type:||Trad, Alpine, 5 pitches, Grade II|
|Consensus:||YDS: 5.8+ French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]|
|FA:||Steve Wunsch and Diana Hunter, 1969|
|Submitted By:||jon jugenheimer on Jul 5, 2012|
|Comments on Corkscrew||Add Comment|
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By Kevin Bradford
Sep 22, 2013
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
I did this climb recently while camping in the meadows. Super fun, with a variety of techniques involved. Definitely consider leaving packs at the base to make the squeeze chimney a little easier. The approach "trail" branches off a few switchbacks above the caves, at a point that allows a level traverse to the bottom of the tower. We broke it up a bit differently than the description above.
Pitch 1: started on the right side of the arÍte, beneath some black rock, up to the base of the big golden dihedral. 5.6
Pitch 2: head up and left, into the dihedral, then left onto the slab. End this pitch at the bottom of a nice fist crack, next to a set of rap slings that provide escape in bad weather, or if you get scared. 2 ropes are most likely required to rappel from here. 5.6
Pitch 3: straight up the fun fist crack, two #3 camalots wouldn't hurt here, then up to and left around a roof and the arÍte, and onto a sloping ledge. This pitch was rad, the exposure around the roof was awesome. 5.7
Pitch 4: crux move right off the deck, with some left-leaning finger cracks and a nice pull to bigger holds above. After this section wrap around to find the west-facing squeeze chimney. Consider short-hauling your pack here if you brought one. Climb the awesome squeeze, with good gear and holds, and once it shits you out, set a belay in the notch behind the pedestal thingy. Another kickass and very memorable pitch. 5.8
Pitch 5: easy scrambling along the right side of the arÍte, with many possibilities. Pull through a few steeper sections and scramble to where the ridge line flattens out, belay at the end of the rope. 5.6
Gear: one set of nuts and cams from .4 to #2 camalot, with two #3's for the fist crack on pitch 3. A blue tcu or .3 camalot could be used in the finger crack that starts pitch 4, but there were other options as well.
To descend the tower take a 4th class ramp system on the east side of the crest, heading due north. Follow this to a notch, and an easy ledge system wrapping around the west side of the rest of the tower. This ledge leads easily to the scree slopes below on the teepee glacier, near the jhmg base camp.