N Twin Sister, W Ridge (August 10 1996)

This is a beautiful, 4th (really probably 3rd) class climb on great rock, with good views (at least in some directions). We came in via the Nooksack river road, and car camped where the road was gated. From here, 3.5 miles of logging road (ugh) led to the obscure fork which leads to the higher complex of logging roads. This fork is an abandonded road which ends in a mile or so. From here, we bashed through horrible clearcut to another logging road, which we followed south (with intermittent bushwhacks across clearcut) until we hit a road which led up and onto the W ridge. A bit more bashing led to timber where we found a great trail up the ridge. The ridge gets rocky and the trail disappears and great scrambling leads to the summit. Beckey's description is excellent. Time from car to summit: 5 1/2 hours.

On the descent, we descended the snowfield on the NW face to the basin. Here we couldn't find a good path, so we bashed through timber, heading W and SW. We probably headed too SW, because we ended up hitting clearcut further south than we should have, which meant an extra hour of bashing. We cruised back to the main logging road, where after a half mile, a kind soul who works at the quarry gave us a lift back to the gate, saving us an hour of walking. The lesson we learned was to call about the status of the gates, and if they're all locked, bring bikes because they'll save you time on the way up, and save your knees on the way down. Otherwise it was a great climb, if a bit too much cross country travel across heinous clearcuts (bring stout boots and gaiters, if you want to save your legs/ankles). Time for descent 4 hours, due to some route finding problems. Downclimbing the W ridge is a definite option.


Rope, ice axes, small bit of rock gear (used the ropes and gear minimally: confident climbers probably wouldn't need it).