TR: Ritter 1 Russ 0

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Vaca Russ
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TR: Ritter 1 Russ 0

Post by Vaca Russ » Wed Jul 20, 2016 10:35 am

Attempted to summit Mt. Ritter on July 16, 2016. My plan was to follow the Clyde Variation route. My actual route is roughly drawn out on the picture below. It looks like this jay made it to the summit!
1 Jay on Summit.jpg
I began the climb up the snow covered gulley.
2 Gully.jpg
The gulley would go from snow to talus and back to snow. This became the theme of this climb…on with the crampons and then off with the crampons. I hate wearing crampons on talus. I don’t feel as if I have good balance.
3 Theme of On Off.jpg
The snow was very sun cupped. It was really bad here in the upper SE snow bowl and higher.
4 Sun Cupped Snow Fields.jpg
I made the mistake of climbing the rocks to the left of the SE col. The couloir was steep but one slip on these rocks could get you stuck head first in the gap between the rocks and the ice.
5 Upper SE Snowbowl.jpg
There it is, the infamous three toed buttress. All I had to do now, according to Summitpost, was “…Ignore all the steep chutes to the south and west, look instead to the north. Near the upper end, you should see an obvious, wide chute running almost due north towards the summit ridge. Some parties report being confused by several chutes here. The skinny one on the left can be climbed, but is more difficult (class 4). Climb the (much) more obvious wide chute (often called the "Secor Chute") on the right. Others have described this as a "slope" rather than a chute, which is more apparent in the upper stretch.”
6 Toed Buttress.jpg
Unfortunately, I made the mistake of climbing the “skinny one on the left”.
7 Obvious Chute.jpg
To me, I was looking for “Owens chute” and that there my friend is a chute! I should have done better research. This was quite a challenging chute to climb. That should have been my first clue.

Looking up the chute…
8 Up This Steep Chute.jpg
Looking down the chute…
9 Steeper than I thought.jpg
I reached the top of the chute and had a great view of Yose, but no summit view.
10 Nice View but not Owens chute.jpg
I climbed back down and decided one mistake was enough for a soloist so I headed back to camp. The mountain will be there another day.

You know, I do have to go back and summit Ritter now. Who wants to tag along? I now know the route!

Thanks for reading my post.

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Re: Ritter 1 Russ 0

Post by Jason » Wed Jul 20, 2016 2:42 pm

Holy Cow that looks steep! Looks like a good time though.

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Teresa Gergen
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Re: Ritter 1 Russ 0

Post by Teresa Gergen » Wed Jul 20, 2016 3:34 pm

Last edited by Teresa Gergen on Wed Nov 14, 2018 8:53 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Ritter 1 Russ 0

Post by bbayley80 » Wed Jul 20, 2016 3:50 pm

wow! that IS a chute!
wow.. just got a little more intimidated :paranoid: :eek: ..ha!

thanks for the share.

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Re: Ritter 1 Russ 0

Post by cefire » Wed Jul 20, 2016 5:00 pm

Phew, so close! In answer to your question, I'd love to tag along for part II :)

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Re: Ritter 1 Russ 0

Post by Beantown » Thu Jul 21, 2016 7:56 pm

I did it last year solo although the Owens chute was not filled with snow. Bummer you turned back the summit is an easy hike from there.

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Re: Ritter 1 Russ 0

Post by BufordT » Thu Jul 21, 2016 11:45 pm

Appreciate the honest report!
Celebrate the Trudge at

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