Watchman's (Northeast) Ridge
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|Type: ||Trad, Alpine, 4 pitches, 2000 feet, Grade III|
|Consensus: ||5.8 [details]|
|FA: ||D. Brayshaw, D. Serl, September 2000|
|Submitted By: ||Dru on Mar 19, 2009|
Don Serl scrambling low on the Watchman's Ridge du...
The route was originally attempted by Don Serl and the late Howard Zwecker in the late 90s. Expecting a scramble, they turned back at the start of the technical pitches.
From the col, scrambling left of the crest for about 500m (class 3 and 4) leads to a steepening. Three pitches of 5th class climbing (5.8, 5.8, 5.4) ascend this section, mostly on the exposed and narrow ridge crest. From atop this crux passage, continue via scrambling until it is possible to move left on ramps. Climb two pitches of hard class 4/easy class 5 climbing to gain the south ridge of the north summit about midway from the north-central col to the summit.
The climbing on this route is exposed and the positions are excellent but the rock is not as good as on the southwest side of the peak.
The northeast ridge of the north summit is reached from Settler Creek. Drive or walk the roadway to its end at Settler Lake (good campsites in forest near the lake). Follow the northern lake shore around the lake, and scramble up rock and heather beyond to gain the toe of the NE ridge.
DESCENT: to regain Settler Creek it is necessary to traverse to the toe of the complete NW ridge and descend the long couloir/gully back down to the logging road; best with some snow still present. With a car shuttle it might be possible to descend one of the more standard descents off the north summit to Daiphy Lake and exit from there to the second car in Talc Creek.
Double ropes help; on the first ascent, one of the party's two ropes was completely severed by a large loose block (now removed). Light rack to 3". A few knifeblades may prove useful.