Thursday, July 24, 2014

"Na Piet Say"

Na Piet Say is the Crow word for the dramatic bear's tooth spire.  This spire had such an impact on the local cartographers that the entire mountain range and the 944,000 acre wilderness area was named in this spire's honor.  The Beartooths.

With little planning I got the invite to climb the spire with Austin Hart and Nick Gaddy.  We left Red Lodge at 2 pm on a Thursday and hiked past a frozen Moon lake and down the spirit-rearguard saddle to the boulder bivy.

We noticed the approach slabs were pouring water and  still had snow fields guarding access to the east ridge.  We decided to approach via the winter route, climbing the direct east ridge from the mini-tooth/beartooth col (Austin and Chad Chadwick did this approach last summer).  What we found was a fun and safer approach to the east ridge, I may never go on those slabs again.  We summited the spire and did some anchor work on the way down.  We replaced webbing on most of the anchors and we completely replaced a really manky anchor with new pitons.  We retraced the winter route with a couple of rappels and lots of downclimbing.

giddy up.

A gentleman's bivy 

we simul-climbed the entire approach ridge


Nick on the last pitch, Psyched!

Summit of the spire

Descending the spire on good/updated anchors

heading down the direct east ridge the tooth raking the sky above

some of the tat we cleaned from the spire

Cheers, Loren

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