North Sister

July 22, 1989

With a full sign up sheet of nine climbers, plans were coordinated to go into Sunshine Meadow in small groups rather than altogether. With last minute changes, cancellations and miscalculations, only five climbers left Sunshine at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday for the summit. Rick remained in camp to nurse his baseball-bumped head. Weather was excellent and the snow was perfect for ascending to the saddle without crampons. Much snow still remained on the west side scree slope of the south ridge which made this most miserable part of the whole climb somewhat easier. At this point, however, the local North Sister Sasquatch rolled a cantaloupe-size rock at the group striking the leader with a direct hit in the thigh and then deflecting over to remove some hide from George’s thigh. A quick assessment assured us we should get out of that bowling alley A.S.A.P. Once on the south ridge the rest of the group went on to the higher parts of the mountain while the leader went solo into a very slow motion mode. After a long tedious climb, the leader finally came upon the rest of the group as they were contemplating the heavily snowed traverse below the summit pinnacle. This was an early climb relative to the opening of the McKenzie Pass making us the first group to cross the traverse. A two-rope fixed line was set up followed by an easy scramble to the summit. A warm relaxing rest and lunch were spent on the summit. Everyone easily downclimbed the pinnacle and chute until Sasquatch pulled a large boulder from Steve’s grasp at the fixed line anchor point leaving Steve with abrasions and rope burns on his hands. The traverse and descent were uneventful; however, the unscathed Doug and John were threatened with mayhem so as to match the appearance and condition of the other three walking wounded. Back at camp Rick and George hiked out to return to Eugene while the others spent the night at Sunshine and hiked out the next day. Making up the group were Rick “Campwatcher” Ahrens, George Jobanek, Steve John, John Pegg, Doug Procter, and Bud Proctor, leader.


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