Type: Trad, Aid, Alpine, 1500 ft, 9 pitches, Grade V
FA: James Garrett, John Chilton, Ryan Hokanson, August 1999 Technical Advisor: Fred Beckey
Page Views: 981 total · 8/month
Shared By: James Garrett on Jul 21, 2008
Admins: Lauren Heerschap, Mike Snyder, Jake Dickerson, Taylor Spiegelberg

You & This Route

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This took perseverence and adaptation to overcome the obstacles we faced to finally reach the summit of "The Wolverine Shield". The first attempt was in August 1988 on a trip with Franziska Garrett and Fred Beckey. Franziska and I bivied (unplanned) atop Pitch #6, the next morning we continued to Pitch #7, where exhausted (mostly thirsty and had shivered most the night away), we retreated.

In August 1997, Fred Beckey, Franziska, Kris Pietryga, and I returned. Kris and I had a portaledge bivy atop Pitch #7. The next day, Kris dislodged a huge rock that narrowly missed killing both of us....we retreated completely rattled.
August 1999 saw us there again with Fred, Kris, Franziska, Sam Fluckiger, John Chilton, and Ryan Hokanson. I think it was John who asked, "it must be an illness to come back all this way in here three times!" We dubbed the route, "The Illness".

I believe that a light modern party could most likely free the route given the right conditions.

Pitch #1: In the center of the face, plumline from the highpoint along the broad summit ridgeline, find an alcove with an left facing and splitter "finger crack pitch". This is a 4 star pitch and an amazingly beautiful natural crack system on the best of granite. Climb to the two-bolt belay ledge. 5.10a, 50m.

Pitch #2: Continue straight up more left facing dihedral to a roof and upward on the featured rock to a belay. 5.9, 50m.

Pitch #3: Now trend left following an arching overlap that leads to the main right facing dihedral system that sweeps to the summit. Belay at the base of the dihedral in an alcove with a fixed nut. 5.8 to 5.9+ (a move), 40m.

Pitch #4: Climb the crack in the dihedral that soon becomes an unexpected seam and pass a bolt to easier climbing to a two-bolt belay. 5.10, A2, 30m.

Pitch #5: Continue on past a rap station into steep crack climbing and eventually reach a small ledge and two-bolt belay. 5.9, A1, 50m.

Pitch #6: Pass a bolt where the crack thins out to a seam in places until a more broken up ramp area to steep cracks, a roof, and the Flake Belay ledge. 5.8, A2.

Pitch #7: From "the flake pitch", a steep hand crack leads to a wider section and double cracks toa thin crack and a pin/bolt hanging alcove belay. 5.9, A1.

Pitch #8: Leave the tiny alcove for "The falling boulder" pitch. Steep climbing to a fixed bashie to good rock/left facing dihedral. Reach a small belay ledge and find several pitons and one bolt. A1+, 45m.

Pitch #9: Climb 5.8 hands to a jumbled section with many crack systems to choose from. Trend a tad to the left where free climbing takes the leader through a contorted roof and the top of the wall to a fixed #3 Camalot/bolt belay. ("where it is very flat"). 5.9, A1, 55m.


The huge East face of Wolverine Peak has an obvious centralized crack System that dissects the center of the face. "The Illness" ascends this.

We rappelled the route with two ropes.


Set of Camalots, all sizes from Micro to #4. Set of Nuts. Set of assorted pitons. Some beaks and rurps, and bashies used.