August 04, 2008

Spearhead - North Ridge

Keith and Melanie were kind enough to invite me along for a Saturday night bivy in Glacier Gorge and subsequent climb of the North Ridge of Spearhead in Rocky Mountain National Park. Spearhead is a granite monolith in the middle of a broad gorge, surrounded by many peaks of even greater stature.

Spearhead and my new tent

I seized this opportunity to use my new tent for the first time. It's a 4 person tent that weighs only 2 pounds (That's 8 ounces per person for the mathematically challanged).

We started the climb at about 6:00 the following morning with 5 other parties. To avoid the cluster that we knew would ensue with that amount of climbers on the same route, we opted to climb a variation to the climber's right of everyone else. This ended up being a very good decision as we felt we had the climb all to ourselves.

Mel on her way up the second pitch

Keith belaying from the top of the second pitch

Our particular route ended up being 6 pitches ranging from 5.4 to 5.6/5.7 in difficulty. The rock quality was great and the protection was sufficiently abundant. The final bit to the not-so-technical-but-very-exposed summit was 4th class and provided a noticeable airiness.

Keith and Mel descending after the climb with our route in the background

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