Le Petit Cheval, Spontaneity Arete

Most of the climbs I choose to share about are amazing, and I love sharing them so other people can feel the confidence to go feel that amazing experience as well.  Some are so bad that I just want to forget, and some are just forgettable, neither of which usually make it to this blog.  And then, some….some are just annoying.  This one, dear readers, was just annoying. [..]

North Early Winter Spire, Chockstone Route

We decided that this moderate mixed route would climb to be the first “alpine climb” of our season. I had descended the Chockstone Route last year after Justin and I had climbed the Early Winter Couloir.  That was an exiting yet challenging ascent that we had shot for too late in the season.  The Chockstone Route, just on the other side of the gully, looked and ended up feeling like a lightweight version of the much more serious EWC.[..]

Mt. Hood, Sandy Glacier Headwall

A year ago, Jessica and I climbed a route on Mount Hood that we had been eyeing for quite some time, the Cathedral Ridge.  The route was just as dramatic and stunning as we had expected.  What neither of us expected was to be as awestruck when we crossed over the Yocum Ridge and were absolutely awestruck by the massive Sandy Glacier Headwall.  “Oh my god, this is huge”, distinctly went through my mind. [...]

Mt. Stuart, Complete North Ridge

I didn't sit down to take the time to write anything after this climb, so this entry is more of a photo dump with a bit of commentary. Stuart's North Ridge definitely earns its spot as a Cascades ultra-classic in my book. Thanks Alan Rousseau for leading this climb, one of the coolest guys in the mountains out there!

North Early Winter Spire, Early Winter Couloir

A week beforehand, a bunch of mixed alpine route beta from WA Pass started spraying on Instagram, and we wanted to partake in the fun. We arrived to the iconic hairpin turn on the highway. The weather was colder than the warm forecast, and we were feeling good after a few glugs of Yerba Matte. It was fairly clear where we were going even in the pitch dark, and after about an hour of following some boot pack and crossing over some shitty tree wells, we found ourselves at what seemed to be at the bottom of the route. [..]

Mt. Hood, Cathedral Ridge

There are really 2 ways to climb the Cathedral Ridge. Either approached by Lolo Pass, all the way from the far northwest flank of the mountain. While scenic and pure, it requires climbers to somehow get back to their car when descending to Timberline.  Alternatively, it can be approached from the good ole south side. It begins with crossing over the Illumination Saddle, then the Reid Glacier, then the Yocum Ridge, then the Sandy Glacier, and then finally make the way onto the Cathedral Ridge. This effectively circumnavigates half the mountain. [...]

Mt. Hood, Devil’s Kitchen Headwall

Bad luck or poor planning, whatever it was, Jessica and I set our eyes on this climb a couple years back but never managed to send it. Whether it was bailing in very dry conditions or forgetting our boots at home, we ended the 2019 season shot down by this “fairly straightforward” Mt Hood south side techy classic. And as 2020 came and left, we managed to keep ourselves busy with plenty of other climbs. But this spring, spotting a splitter sunny but cold weather window, we snuck out to Oregon to finally (hopefully) bang this one out together. [...]

Ecuador 2021, Escaping the Pandemic

Just like most people in the world, the Pandemic had been weighing on us. We had gotten a lot of climbing in this past year, but our international plans had all been canceled. And with Jessica's green card application in the USA moving forward, we knew there would be a long period ahead where travel on her end would be 100% restricted. The weather in the PNW had been particularly bad this winter, and it only looked like it was getting worse. After a number of failed climbing attempts due to conditions, we made the call to go south for a bit. [...]

Cotopaxi

My 3rd time in Ecuador. My 6th week. Around my 40th day in the country. And I had still not ever stepped foot on the famous Cotopaxi. I swore that this trip, I would change that, I wouldn't leave before giving it a shot. I say “a shot” because our luck with the weather and conditions has been fairly poor so far. A few years ago, coming to Ecuador looking to climb more technically challenging routes, Cotopaxi seemed to not have any on the list. The perfect conical shape left no nooks and crannies for “imperfections” like ridges or faces. [...]