Cassin Ridge Alaska Grade 5, 5.8, AI 4

  • Currently 5.0/5


Alaska, USA

Trip Report
Cassin Ridge, Denali - harder and more rewarding than expected
Thursday August 14, 2014 6:07pm
My partner and I benefited tremendously from other people's Cassin trip reports. Partly in an effort to give back, I wrote up a report from our ascent this year. We found the route to be much more challenging than expected. When we got down Lisa, the basecamp manager, told us we were the only Americans to get up a technical route on Denali this year. Several of the more "exciting" parts of the trip were: when we dropped a tent pole into a crevasse, when my partner got hit in the arm with ice and had to climb the first and second rock bands with largely one arm, and when we he woke himself up from farting. (I'm sure his list of "exciting" highlights would be different.) The write up describes our time on the mountain and my difficulty exploring questions like "why climb?"

Here's the trip report.

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Credit: maxneale
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  Trip Report Views: 5,952
About the Author


Trad climber
San Francisco, USA
  Aug 14, 2014 - 06:09pm PT
That's one of the better opening sentences of any TR I've read.
ron gomez

Trad climber
  Aug 14, 2014 - 06:35pm PT
Sweet report congratulations on the ascent. Need more of this on this site
Charlie D.

Trad climber
Western Slope, Tahoe Sierra
  Aug 14, 2014 - 06:45pm PT
Awesome thanks for sharing the stoke.....

Gym climber
Mount Shasta
  Aug 14, 2014 - 06:53pm PT
Best photos I've seen of the route! Excellent report!!!

  Aug 14, 2014 - 06:57pm PT

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
  Aug 14, 2014 - 06:58pm PT
Awesome TR!

Trad climber
  Aug 14, 2014 - 08:08pm PT

Trad climber
No. Tahoe
  Aug 14, 2014 - 08:40pm PT
Whoa. Tuff stuff. Well done.

Trad climber
The fake McCoy from nevernever land.
  Aug 14, 2014 - 08:46pm PT
Fantastic! And as a teaser to those too lazy to click over "Childhood potty training did little to prepare us for pooping in a snowstorm at 17,700 ft..." quite a good opener, indeed.

Sonoma County
  Aug 14, 2014 - 09:13pm PT
Amazed! Amazing!
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
  Aug 14, 2014 - 10:34pm PT
what a great trip report

thanks for posting
Stevee B

Trad climber
Oakland, CA
  Aug 15, 2014 - 04:43am PT
Such an outstanding TR. Amazing pictures. Takes you right there. Much much respect.

Trad climber
Missoula, MT & "Pourland", OR
  Aug 15, 2014 - 06:17am PT
Well done!
I believe some Brits made it up the Cassin and a Japanese couple who my son and I met as they were coming down the West Butt in early June with packs as small as them!
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
  Aug 15, 2014 - 08:01am PT
Really good report! Thank you for sharing!
tom Carter

Social climber
  Aug 15, 2014 - 08:03am PT
Fantastic TR!!!

Beautiful photos!!
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
North wet, and Da souf
  Aug 15, 2014 - 10:02am PT
What it is all about, thank you!!!

Trad climber
Westboro, MA
  Aug 15, 2014 - 10:17am PT
We did the Grand when Zeb was 13 - he farted himself to sleep then too. You should know better then to feed him eggs.
Fat Dad

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
  Aug 15, 2014 - 10:21am PT
Terrific effort and great report. I had hoped to take a similar trip after college and ended up blowing out my knee two weeks before graduation.

It's weird looking at reports of objectives that you always wanted to (and hoped you would) climb, particularly the Harvard Route, and to realize now that you never will. Something for the next life. Thanks much for the vicarious gratification.
Denali - Cassin Ridge Alaska Grade 5, 5.8, AI 4 - Alaska, USA. Click to Enlarge
An overview of the mountain.
Photo: Mike Gauthier
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