Sentinel Rock Summit Register- Classic Who's Who 1934-1976


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Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Original Post - Jun 19, 2011 - 02:57pm PT
Quite a while ago Ray Olsen mentioned finding a very cool Yosemite summit register while rooting around in Yvon Chouinard's attic while he was working for him. Well, here it is! Royal set this register and transcribed and added to the contents in pen fortunately. I am not sure where the original register has ended up. Royal couldn't recall but hopefully the Bancroft ended up with it. Guido? The Sentinel register is really a Who's Who in Yosemite climbing! Enjoy it!

The last of Royal's entries is in black ink.

The two Sentinel routes that this young man did with Chuck Kroger shown in the register page above were certainly the high points in his life. Ernie Milburn was killed not long after these climbs when an old sling broke on him while rappeling from Goodrich Pinnacle. Chuck subsequently partnered up with another Stanford alum Scott Davis and the history!

That is the last entry!

Quite the list of familiar names of accomplished climbers that grace the ST. Hopefully this will pull some of these folks back to this climber's forum. Routes, tales and history are the gifts that keep on giving...

Al Stecks superb account of the first ascent of the Steck- Salathé is posted on post #101.

The Granite State.
Jun 19, 2011 - 03:09pm PT
Some serious history there. Thanks for sharing.

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Jun 19, 2011 - 03:12pm PT
Now, that is a walk down memory lane!

As always thanks Steve and this might, just might, induce some of the old boys to open the archives of antiquity and contribute before it all turns to dust.
Mighty Hiker

Vancouver, B.C.
Jun 19, 2011 - 03:17pm PT
The names of ST posters that I recognize so far include Tom Cochrane, Royal Robbins, Bill Amborn, and Joe Fitschen - although some are infrequent. And maybe a lurker or two is in there, too.

Interesting that the "Chouinard-Herbert" is generally referred to as the "Chessman Route".
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jun 19, 2011 - 03:21pm PT
most recently I've heard the Chouinard-Herbert referred to as the "Cherbert", like the refreshing dessert...
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 19, 2011 - 04:14pm PT
This register came my way because of a correspondence with Steve Roper about the order of ascents on the Steck- Salathé Route. I was trying to place Tom Frost's ascents. Here is the chronology that he sent me. I asked if he would be willing to scan and post the register contents and he sent the register my way instead. This is primo historical material.

Big thanks to Roper!!!

Early Ascents of Sentinel's north face (Steck-Salathé), 1950 through May 1974:

(Information from notes taken by Steve Roper in 1961/62 and, mainly, Sierra Club Register # 318, from top of Sentinel, given to SR by Yvon Chouinard, 11 Oct 93. Early ascents, before 1963, were copied into this register in 1963 by Royal Robbins, so some of these earlier dates may be suspect. And, of course, not all climbers found or signed the register, especially those in a hurry near dusk.)

1. John Salathé and Allen Steck. July 1950. 5 days.

2. Royal Robbins, Jerry Gallwas, and Don Wilson. 2 days. July 5-6, 1953

3. Royal Robbins and Mike Sherrick. Aug. 11-12, 1956. 1.5 days. (Register, copied years later, says 1955; Ament claims 1954 in his book; SCB 57, p. 57 says 1956; Mugelnoos says Aug 11-12, 1956)

4. Mark Powell and Chuck Wilts. June 22-23, 1957. 1.5 days.

5. Dave Rearick and Bob Kamps. June 21-22, 1958. 2 days.

6. Yvon Chouinard and TM Herbert. June, 1959. 2 days.

7. Chuck Pratt and Charlie Raymond. August, 1959. 2 days.

8. Royal Robbins, Pete Rogowski, and Lin Ephriam. Sept. 6-7, 1959. 2 days.

9. Joe Fitschen and Tom Frost. Sept. 6-7, 1959 (Separate rope with above team.) 2 days.

Trad climber
Washington DC
Jun 19, 2011 - 05:35pm PT
lets see more pages!
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 19, 2011 - 07:48pm PT
Ten more pages in the OP...
Mighty Hiker

Vancouver, B.C.
Jun 19, 2011 - 07:52pm PT
"13 Oct 64 - Tom Cochrane - 2' 3" - via fixed lines on west face"

Then you read the entry above, and get the picture. LoL!

Mudcat Spire
Jun 19, 2011 - 07:54pm PT
Royal 3:35

Oh noes, what if something bad happens????? Please rope up!!

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jun 19, 2011 - 08:45pm PT
Many thanks to Royal for recopying this, to Steve Roper for sending his information and most of all to Steve Grossman for posting it! It was so interesting to see the succession of climbers as one generation replaced another on those climbs with the exception of Royal and Chuck who seemed to keep coming back.

I was surprised to see the Dornan brothers from Wyoming up there in 1968. I somehow thought they had climbed in the Valley earlier. I guess I got this impression because I knew Dave and Reed in Boulder in 1963 and 64 and always thought of them as older than me and also more experienced from their descriptions of Devil's Tower and the Tetons. Now I remember that Dave did visit us in Berkeley in the late '60's.

I last saw Dave and Reed in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysisa in 1973, where he was doing a public health internship for a graduate degree and I was passing through on my way to Nepal for the first time. Does anyone know what they are doing now?

Jun 20, 2011 - 12:07am PT
I did a write up on this a while back. Guido had said it was the 9th ascent, but I was sure it was the 11th. In deference to Guido, I started the write up as the 9th ascent, even though I felt that deferring to him is probably always the wrong idea. Nice picture of me and Foott in that thread.

I don't remember signing the register, maybe Jeff did it for us.

Ice climber
Happy Boulders
Jun 20, 2011 - 12:52am PT
john hansen

Jun 20, 2011 - 01:38am PT
Very good history. One of your best ever.

I like the entry Sept 9 / 66. 3 hours 35 minutes. Where is the entry a couple days before from Roper and Sacherer?

Is the Gobi Wall and Psychedelic wall in there somewhere?

Thanks Steve.
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Ontario, Canada, eh?
Jun 20, 2011 - 01:55am PT
Dang! Third ascent of Chessman Pinnacle route [later Chouinard-Herbert] in only eight hours in 1963 by Sacherer and Roper.

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Jun 20, 2011 - 03:39am PT
So cool, thanks for posting. So many big names there. One of my favorite things about climbing is when you do a route and know that in a way you're sharing an experience with so many other people. It's a weird comparison, and I haven't owned a piano for a few years, so I don't play often, but, in a way...if you play classical music, it's kind of interesting to think how you can be playing something beethoven, chopin, or bach wrote 150-200 years ago, and you know you're fighting the same difficulties and enjoying the same things that so many countless other students have dealt with for generations. Looking forward to steck salathe some day in the future.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 20, 2011 - 11:28am PT
Great thread BBA!

Don't know how I missed that one...

Trad climber
Santa Monica, California
Jun 20, 2011 - 11:33am PT
Jeff Lowe (16)

I love it!

Trad climber
Fresno CA
Jun 20, 2011 - 01:45pm PT
Thanks much. I love these old register reproduction threads.

Scott Thelen

Trad climber
Truckee, Ca
Jun 20, 2011 - 01:55pm PT
Its great to see Tony Qamars name. He stayed at my house a couple weeks before he died. F*#king loging trucks.
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