Trip Report
North Buttress of Mt. Goode Trip Report 8/9/09
Tuesday August 11, 2009 6:27pm

North Buttress of Mt. Goode Trip Report 8/9/09
This TR is dedicated to dirtineye because I wish him well and he inspired this earlier trip report of this route..
Climb on Dirt!

We got up at 5:30 or so and brewed some coffee and I had my last meal of the day, walnut bread and cheese. Experience has shown that I will not be eating or drinking much at altitude. We started off up the Bishop Pass Trail at around 6:30.

Full Moon Over Parking Lot

It was a beautiful day all day long.

Hokusai Brennen’s Thirty Six Views Of Mt. Goode

We cruised up to Long Lake at a mellow pace. I hadn’t been above 9,000 feet this year and I figured I needed to “start slow and taper”. We took about an hour and a half until we went off trail. We strolled across Sierra meadows, where there are a lot of flowers who think it is still spring. As we started up the first big talus slope I started to feel the altitude, about 11,700 feet. So I slowed down. “Start slow and taper.” As I topped over the last moraine it was clear that this flower was in better shape than I was.

It took another 1:45 to get to below the snow field. We racked up and I ate a few Clif shot blocks. We stared up at the spectacular North Buttress.

The Route

We both grabbed a couple of sharp rocks as hand axes and I followed Bob up the snow field. As it got steeper it was a matter of slam in your two rocks, kick a couple of steps, and repeat. At the top when it steepened I started chopping the steps with my rock. My right hand rock was a lovely thing about 7 inches long with a wicked sharp point, a great tool. My left rock did the job but just wasn’t as fun, shorter and blunter. Bob threw down the rope for me for the last 20 feet, which I was happy about as it was steep and hard. I moved around the corner to the snow trough at the start of the route and put in a solid donini belay. It was now 10:30.

The Donini BD#3 belay™

We elected to do the start in the Supertopo and the Croft guidebooks because it is apparently the original way and because it was easier and therefore faster. I graciously offered Bob the odd pitches, which have all the cruxes, because it would be faster. He was soon moving upward. About thirty feet up I suddenly hear, “rock, rock.” I plastered my self onto the face and three fist size rocks ricocheted of my helmet. It got quiet and “Sorry, there is a lot of rock on all the ledges” comes down. I thought of Flouride taking the big hit, scary. This route has a lot of loose rock lieing around and requires careful rope management.
The second half of P1 has a great 5.8 thinish crack.

Looking up P2.
P2 starts with the super cool 5.8 hand/fist crack. It seems like almost every pitch had some super cool bit of climbing, whatever the grade. I do remember thinking as I finished this pitch that you better have the whole 5.8 technical repertoire down it you want to move quickly. After the crack I could not find any pro until the belay maybe 35 feet. I was unhappy at the time but the climbing is pretty reasonable. This climb has some mandatory runouts on easier terrain. This is some alpine climbing. We are definitely not in Kansas anymore, Toto.

P3 traverse. A great pitch.
The chimney at the end is fun. P4 is kind of scrappy.

P5 crux
The crux kind of unfolds in an interesting and fun way. The pro is excellent.
P6 is where I had my little adventure. The Supertopo is just plain wrong. After you do the fun chimney you go straight up. You don’t go to the right at all. Of course I did. The topo shows you move up and right for half the remaining pitch and up and left for the second half. I moved up and right for forty feet and was soon looking over the arete to a large steep wall. This ain’t no 5.5. I down climb twenty feet and looking up a crack/gully see what appears to be a left trending ledge to the belay spot. I put in a piece of pro and move up the grainy, rounded double cracks for 35 feet of no pro until I get a good #3. I look around the ledge system. There is the belay ledge 20 blank feet away. Dang! I could tension traverse? Instead I put in a great #10 stopper and lower myself back down 50 feet, anchor myself, pull the rope down and tie back in. Meanwhile Bob is way out of sight wondering what is going on. The rope goes up, the rope goes down, the rope goes back up again.... Now on the 5.5, I scramble to the belay. Bob comes up with a big old grin and as I shake my head about my lead, he says, “Look where we are!” We both look around at the mountains all around us smiling like a couple of kids. Bob dashes around the corner on the reletively easy P6. Soon I’m moving up another cool chimney.
P7 Chimney

Mt. Humphreys
Twice I’ve not reached the summit on Humphreys East Arete Route. Beautiful peak.
I do the little “tunnel through”. Bob, with Croft’s blessing, skips the optional boulder problem and cranks on through short steep moves to the top. It was 4:30. Six hours on the climb.

Summit shot, Zander. Is it nap time?

Summit shot, Bob with the Palisades

By this time I was dead meat. I hadn’t eaten or drunk anything since P2. Meanwhile, Bob was just happy as a clam. Eating up a storm. He had gotten some kind of second wind for the last three pitches. We start the long trudge down the backside talus and scree to the trail. After a while Bob took most of my gear and we went a little faster. Thanks for that Bob. I finally stumbled to the car about 8:00. Feeling a lot better at the lower elevation but, man, was I hungry. Great climb y’all. Get on it.

  Trip Report Views: 1,152
About the Author
Zander is a trad climber from Berkeley.

Did you like this Trip Report? Got something to say? Don't hold back...
Comment on this Trip Report

Gym climber
berkeley, ca
  Aug 11, 2009 - 06:29pm PT
Yeah! A+ on your homework! Awesome pics too. I'm going to click back and look better now...

  Aug 11, 2009 - 06:31pm PT
Frikkin' wow...what an outing! Looks like a fabulous route, on an equally nice formation.

Bravo! Thanks for the rundown.

  Aug 11, 2009 - 06:31pm PT
Sweet !!

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
  Aug 11, 2009 - 06:31pm PT
You guys rock.....I'm diggin the plaid shirt.

Gap for men? I hope not.

Looks more like he got it at a feed store or Pep Boys. That's awesome. Well done up there fellas.

Trad climber
  Aug 11, 2009 - 06:32pm PT
that looks amazing.

really nice position on that climb. you'd be happy to have that amount of loose rock in most mountain ranges.

i've never done that route or even walked over to the base, but i've often wondered about it.

tx for posting that

Social climber
Oakland, CA
  Aug 11, 2009 - 06:35pm PT
Great stuff and great photos, looks like you guys had a Goode time.

Hope to get out there myself, thanks for the stoke!

  Aug 11, 2009 - 06:49pm PT
Nice TR of a great route. Sounds like an awesome day (and some great photos there too).

I friend and I put up a route to the right of the NB years ago after an earlier attempt resulted in a cut cord. There is indeed a lot of loose shite on that face, though there are also long clean sections.

Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
  Aug 11, 2009 - 07:10pm PT
Awesome photos. i added a link to this page
David Wilson

  Aug 11, 2009 - 07:21pm PT
Nice job on this Zander - makes me want to be up there.

Social climber
Das Blase
  Aug 11, 2009 - 08:41pm PT
Wow, that looks bad ass!
dee ee

Mountain climber
Of THIS World (Planet Earth)
  Aug 11, 2009 - 08:50pm PT
That's a fun route, the 5.9 pitch is classic. Good job you guys!

beneath the valley of ultravegans
  Aug 11, 2009 - 09:51pm PT
Zander, you animal! Mt. Goode is one of the best. Seriously, I love that route. My friend Darla smacked me upside the head for soloing it with a topo scrawled on a napkin! The second time up--with a partner--was also memorable. What's next on the tour?
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
  Aug 11, 2009 - 09:52pm PT
yay! for Bob and Zander!
good on you guys!

right here, right now
  Aug 11, 2009 - 11:50pm PT
What a swell TR of a super sweet route !!!
Great pictures too; 'some proud symmetry to that pup.
Chris Oakes

  Aug 12, 2009 - 12:14am PT
Great write up Zander. Looks like you got in the mandatory adventure pitch.

Mountain climber
Marooned, 855 miles from Tuolumne Meadows
  Aug 12, 2009 - 12:20am PT
Man alive! That looks about as Goode as it gets!
Great report by every measure.
east side underground

paul linaweaver hilton crk ca
  Aug 12, 2009 - 12:30am PT
Climbed a route on the prominate pillar to the right of the main buttress III 5.10 with Mike Broski and mike Strassman. Not sure if Strassman ever reported it- cool line to a free standing summit. We couldn't easily gain the Goode ridge proper so we rapped the route. Around '93 (?)Goode times.

Social climber
Lida Junction
  Aug 12, 2009 - 12:32am PT
I liked the tr, and pics. looks like fun

Gym climber
It's not rocket surgery
  Aug 12, 2009 - 12:39am PT
Kudos to you!
Great TR and photos.

Gym climber
  Aug 12, 2009 - 12:42am PT

  Aug 12, 2009 - 12:54am PT
great tr and beautiful pics. we climbed this car-to-car the day before you guys, in about 11 hours i think. we took a 70m rope with us and linked the route in 6 pitches. nice line on a very aesthetic formation.

Trad climber
The pitch of Bagalaar above you
  Aug 12, 2009 - 12:56am PT

Gettin er done as always Z!


Social climber
Wolf City, Wyoming
  Aug 12, 2009 - 01:08am PT
Too cool for words!
OT, it almost, kinda, looks like Bob has hair...

Big Wall climber
Ashland, Or
  Aug 12, 2009 - 01:14am PT
well that looks awesome!

Trad climber
The here and now
  Aug 12, 2009 - 02:01am PT
Cool! That route's been on my hit list for years. Good job; gotta get there soon.

  Aug 12, 2009 - 08:16am PT
very cool looking route and sweet pictures

right here, right now
  Aug 12, 2009 - 10:56am PT
From CLIMBING, quite a while back...


Author's Reply  Aug 12, 2009 - 01:08pm PT
Wow, great response. Thanks all.

Where is your route? It looks like there is just amazing route potential up there. Any stories?

"Zander, you animal!"
Coming from you that is fine praise!

east side underground,
I think I heard about this route. It’s the next small summit in the pics? Any stories?

First I thought the chalk was from Bob but after seeing it on lead I realized someone had climbed the route the day before. It was fun to be up in that wild place and see faint traces of chalk, echos of climbers past.

That is a great article, well written, a very cool looking wall. I wish I lived closer so I could explore the whole area around Mt. Goode.

Climb on!

Oakland, CA
  Aug 12, 2009 - 06:18pm PT

Zander your pictures make this line look clean as a baby's brow. Thanks for putting the report together.

Social climber
CHC, en zed
  Aug 12, 2009 - 07:21pm PT
Way cool Zander. Amazing that you guys left the party and were able to climb that the next day.

Saw Bob in the gym and he mentioned how altitude messes you up a bit too.

  Aug 12, 2009 - 09:24pm PT
zander - glad we picked different days to head up there. its cool to have routes like that all to oneself. i didn't see the faintest bit of chalk up there, but it seems like that route should be fairly popular. i thought it was much better than north arete on bear creek spire, with similar logistics, and not much harder.

Trad climber
northern CA
  Aug 13, 2009 - 10:03am PT
Great TR & photos - thanks for posting!

Trad climber
Tunneling out of prison
  Aug 13, 2009 - 11:49am PT

Nice one, Zander and Bob!

Trad climber
South Pasadena, CA
  Apr 25, 2014 - 05:59pm PT
Bump for a cool route still in my future, and saying Hi to Zander and Bob. I hope y'all are doing well.
Did you like this Trip Report? Got something to say? Don't hold back...
Comment on this Trip Report