The Husband

August 23-24, 2003

The Husband is a heavily eroded volcano a few miles to the west of South and Middle Sisters. Glacial activity in the past has carved deep cirques into the mountain, leaving steep head walls of crumbling volcanic rock that rise to 7524 feet. We approached our climb using the Foley Ridge trail, crossing the pass between Substitute Point and Proxy Point and continuing several miles beyond to a hidden camp on the southeast ridge of The Husband. We enjoyed the evening alpenglow as the surrounding summits of the Sisters group peaked in and out of clouds at sunset, and spent a comfortable night with Mars shining intensely bright in the southwest sky. Summit day involved a short hike up a forested ridge and then a scramble up steep scree and sand to the base of the head wall of the SE face. The route to the summit follows a dike of higher quality rock about 200 vertical feet to the summit and requires some vertical rock climbing skills. Our very experienced group of volcano climbers decided to forgo the climbing ropes for the joy of free soloing on the high quality rock. We climbed closely together in a group to the summit, quietly giving words of advice and encouragement to each other. We sat on the summit under sunny, blue skies counting lightning scar fulgurites, and photographing the view of the high Cascades from Mt. Jefferson to Diamond Peak. The B and B fire complex burning near Santiam Pass looked massive with a giant wall of smoke blowing away from us, thankfully. We reversed our route, down climbing and then rappelling from a large horn of rock on the southeast face. Fueled by the abundant juicy-ripe huckleberries, we packed our gear and returned to the cars on the Foley Ridge trail. Our guest climber was Scot Hunt, and Obsidian climbers were Bob Burnett, Wayne Deeter, Peggy Lee Mathes and leader Brian Hoyland.

Our home in the sky

Our route

Peggy Lee, Brian, Scot, and Bob on top

Washington, Jack and Jeff with smoke from the B&B complex fires

The “Blob”

— photos by Wayne Deeter

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