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Saber Ridge
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Saber Ridge traverse, south to north T 

Saber Ridge traverse, south to north 

YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b

   
Type:  Trad, Alpine, 20 pitches, Grade III
Consensus:  YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b [details]
FA: Scott Thelen (2008)
Page Views: 1,539
Submitted By: fossana on Jul 16, 2013

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The Prism and Saber ridge from the approach.

Description 

Being a ridge traverse there are many ways to go on some sections. Choose you own adventure. I found the most sustained part to be surmounting the first headwall.

In relation to something like Matthes, it's longer, more sustained and more exposed.

Location 

Start
Start as far down the lower angled slabs as you wish.

Descent
Scramble off to the west until you can drop down onto the talus field that puts you west of the Prism. There is also a trail descent down Elizabeth Pass, but it's longer. For this you'll have to head NE down the slabs and cross-country to the Elizabeth Pass trail.

Protection 

no fixed gear or anchors


Photos of Saber Ridge traverse, south to north Slideshow Add Photo
looking back to the south
looking back to the south
really fun section here
really fun section here
knife-edged fun
knife-edged fun
view of Mt Stewart and Tamarack Lake
view of Mt Stewart and Tamarack Lake
nearing the summit
nearing the summit
final push
final push
view to the east
view to the east
View of the second bump/headwall.  Looks harder than it is.
BETA PHOTO: View of the second bump/headwall. Looks harder th...
looking down the route
looking down the route
the options for the second "bump"
the options for the second "bump"
looking back at the Prism
looking back at the Prism
steep traversing the way I went for the first headwall
steep traversing the way I went for the first head...
view to the south with the Prism on the right
view to the south with the Prism on the right
one of the easier bits
one of the easier bits
route start and end
BETA PHOTO: route start and end
Glacier Ridge and Deadman Canyon
Glacier Ridge and Deadman Canyon
many options to surmount the first headwall
many options to surmount the first headwall
looking down the low-angled slab start
looking down the low-angled slab start
Mt Stewart again
Mt Stewart again
Saber Ridge from Tamarack Lake
Saber Ridge from Tamarack Lake
view east past one of the gendarmes
view east past one of the gendarmes
near the end of the ridge
near the end of the ridge

Comments on Saber Ridge traverse, south to north Add Comment
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By Chad_N
From: Chattanooga TN
Jul 16, 2014

This is fun ridge traverse climbing. Agree w/ fossana about the headwall being sustained and it's probably the crux. Several options here and it felt like I chose the easiest; felt like 5.7+ face climbing on crusty flakes and cracks. After the headwall is gained, climbing through the slot is fun as there is a perfect hand crack. Then the ridge fun begins. Some class 3 and 4 mixed in with mid-5th and anything up to 5.10 if you wish. I stuck with the all the easiest options and 5.7 is a good grade for this climb. The exposure had me laughing it was so good! Wore climbing shoes for the headwall then switched to approach shoes for the ridge. The descent is not trivial. A great link-up would be to climb the Prizm, then traverse its ridge, rap and climb Saber. Saber is probably a better solo for those comfortable as carrying in gear and pitching up would be long and brutal, but still a great adventure for those looking for that.