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Micro flowers and heather

Forbidden Peak’s West Ridge — A Photo Essay

Most North Cas­cades adven­tures start here.…brush and slid­er alder! These pho­tos chron­i­cle a quick trip into the heart of the North Cas­cades Nation­al Park and a climb of the West Ridge of For­bid­den Peak, 8815ft, III, 5.6 — one of Steck and Rop­er’s 50 Clas­sic Climbs of North Amer­i­ca.” Broth­er­hood of the rope” was shared by Crispin Prahl, Jeff Ran­ish and Jere­my Allyn (MM North Amer­i­ca Pro­gram Director).

One of the many water­falls on the approach

Crispin breaks out into Boston Basin — home of For­bid­den, Tor­ment, Boston, Sahale and Shark­fin Tower

Mighty Johan­nes­burg Moun­tain, 8200 ft, across the Cas­cade Riv­er val­ley (local relief is an aston­ish­ing 6800ft)

Jeff and Crispin under the objec­tive — West Ridge of For­bid­den on the left skyline

Jere­my at a high bivy in upper Boston Basin

Morn­ing light above camp

West Ridge Couloir (tak­en on descent lat­er that day). We soloed this quick­ly and in per­fect con­di­tions. This access­es the ridge crest.

Tran­si­tion into the couloir

Jere­my on a steep­er variation

Crispin scop­ing con­di­tions on the NW Face route

Crispin with Eldo­ra­do Peak and the Inspi­ra­tion Glac­i­er behind

Low­er West Ridge from the notch.

Clas­sic ridge climb­ing on sol­id rock, incred­i­ble posi­tions, and wild exposure

Mid-route look­ing down to the For­bid­den Glacier

One of the many gen­darmes” on route and look­ing out to Tor­ment Peak, Eldo­ra­do and Moraine Lake

Cas­cade Pass down low — the start to the world famous Ptarmi­gan Tra­verse. Spi­der, For­mi­da­ble, Dome and Glac­i­er Peaks

Crispin belays Jeff from the summit.

For­bid­den’s ultra-clas­sic North Ridge

Jere­my on top and in the sun!

The mighty Boston Glac­i­er with Buck­n­er, Boston, and Sahale Peaks

North Face of Buckner

Mt Logan and the Fre­mont Glacier

Boston and Sahale and the Quien Sabe Glacier

Johan­nes­burg (some locals call this peak, Joe-heinous-burg. How­ev­er, you are wide­ly con­sid­ered to be a neo­phyte Cas­cades climber if you have not climbed it at least once)

Most climbers descend back down the West Ridge. We opt­ed for the fast, effi­cient, but noto­ri­ous­ly stress­ful East Ledges descent. 5 rap­pels off the top, pull the rope, take a few deep breaths, watch for loss blocks, and don’t fall” was the mantra

Small beau­ty along the way…

Jeff in an exposed bit

Psy­ched to be off the descent!

A spec­tac­u­lar bivy spot on a fly­ing prow above Boston Basin

Glac­i­er Lilies in Boston Basin. We were a bit ear­ly for the full alpine flo­ral dis­play. It gets bet­ter, and better…enjoy!

- Jere­my Allyn, Moun­tain Madness