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Richard Shore on P2 of the West Face of The Plunge...
|Register with the NP Mountaineering Headquarters in Talkeetna, AK before climbing in the park!|
A short two-pitch route up the awesome Plunger pinnacle. The first ascent party severely overrated the crux pitch at 5.12a/b. From my experience (based on Indian Creek and Yosemite-style splitter cracks), this is no harder than about 5.11b.
Climb moderate snow and cross a bergschrund to access the base of the rock. Many possible starts are available, I will describe the obvious one we took.
P1) 5.6-5.7, ~80'. Up a low-angle left-facing dihedral to a belay in a notch from boulders with fixed rappel slings.
P2) 5.11, 50'. Scramble up and right through a notch from the belay, then up the slightly overhanging splitter #1 camalot sized crack (crux). Follow the crack as it bends right and narrows to fingers and the exposure increases dramatically. Belay from fixed slings at the top of the flake/crack, or continue another 10' up easy 5th class crack to the summit. Downclimb back to the sling anchor. This pitch could also be easily aided/French-freed at C1.
An obvious left-facing dihedral on the west face of the Plunger marks the first pitch. Rappel with a single 60m cord from fixed rappel slings.
Standard rack to 3". Two #1 camalot sized pieces are handy for the P2 crux. Rappel with a single 60m cord from fixed slings.
The West Face 5.11 in red, the North Face 5.10a in...
Adrienne Kentner topping out on the West Face of T...