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Routes in North Sister

South Ridge 4th 1 2 I 2 M 1b Steep Snow
Thayer Glacier Headwall WI1 M3 PG13
Type: Mixed, Ice, Alpine
FA: unknown
Page Views: 562 total · 26/month
Shared By: Jason George on Jun 19, 2016
Admins: Nate Ball, Micah Klesick

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Start at the Pole Creek Trailhead head. About two miles in you will go off trail and start heading towards the east side of the North Sister.

You'll eventually make it to the Thayer Glacier. Once there make your way up and then choose a gully. The center one is the most direct. Depending on the gully you choose, this could be the crux. Depending the season this could be snow, ice, rock, or a mix of everything.

All of the gullies lead to a steep snow field. Continue up and slightly to the right. You should be able to see the summit block at this point. You will need to get to the other side of it though.

Once you have climbed around you will be greeted with some of the poorest quality rock possible. If it's frozen up you're in luck. If it's not then be ready to pull some rock out while climbing up to the summit.

Descent is either the way you came up or down the standard route.


In late spring the following was used: 2 pickets, set of nuts, a few small cams, a few ice screws, and pins.

The rock quality is so poor don't expect to be able to place much rock pro.

As of June, 2016 there are two 6mm fixed cord that run up to the summit. Once looked new, one looked old.


Kyle Tarry
Portland, OR
  AI1-2 M3 PG13
Kyle Tarry   Portland, OR
  AI1-2 M3 PG13
FYI this route takes you to the north of the twin summits on N. Sister. It's probably a bit lower but also less frequently visited. We rapped off the summit to the northeast and then traversed around the backside to hook back into the "standard" route. You may also be able to scramble up top and rap off into the bowling alley on the standard route, not sure.

Interestingly enough, there were two cords/ropes on the summit, going down the the saddle north of the summit. Would be interesting to know who left them there. Feb 7, 2017

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