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Mt Earnslaw Pikirakatahi West Pk

Type
Altitude
2820m

The West Peak was first climbed by H F Wright and J Robertson on 6 February 1914.

Image
Aspect
South
Lat/lon
POINT (168.395534 -44.625751)
Topo50
CA10 347 483
Accessed from
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Routes

Reference Title Grade Length Pro Quality Operations
 Wright Robertson Route, II,2 II,2 0m
0

Gain access to a scree shelf by scrambling though first rocks on the north-east shoulder of the East Peak and then follow the scree shelf round until directly under West Peak. Here a chimney leads up 500m directly to the summit. The foot of the chimney can be reached from the standard route to Pluto Col from Wright Col.


  • P1
  • Alpine (Commitment) II
  • Alpine (Mt Cook) 2

 Rime waits for no man, 3+,III 3+,III 400m
0

Takes an easy sneak onto the most dominant rib on the NF. Can be climbed as rock or mixed route depending on conditions. From the traverse from Wright col / Esquilant towards Pluto, head up towards the largest steepest rock wall on the West Peak (facing the biv). At the base, follow an easy snow gully angling up right, gaining the highest rib on the North Face at half- height (around right of gendarmes - walk behind these). Follow this (scrambling, sometimes exposed) on convoluted gullies and corners right of the crest, finishing on two easy roped mixed pitches to top out high on the East Ridge (a rock corner, then a snow gully with ice step to a final 5m stemming chimney). A single rope, an ice screw or two and a light rock rack are sufficient. Descent options include Wright-Robertson couloir, Traverse to E Peak and standard NF descent, or possibly NW ridge or W face of W Peak.
Feels like a route from the early era. Rock surprisingly reasonable, although not as excellent as they made out in the 30's!


  • P1
  • Alpine (Technical) 3+
  • Alpine (Commitment) III
  • 400m

 Leader Route, II,2 II,2 0m
0

From Wright Col traverse shelf as in Route 6 but when under the col in the ridge between the East and West Peaks ascend a steep crack of rotten rock to the col. After a short deviation on to the steep South Face, ascend the ridge to the summit.


  • P1
  • Alpine (Commitment) II
  • Alpine (Mt Cook) 2

 North Ridge, II,2 II,2 0m
0

From Pluto Col climb up the north ridge until, at about 150m below the peak, a traverse across a small couloir to a subsidiary ridge overlooking the main couloir on West Peak can be made. The left side of this ridge is climbed back to the main ridge which is followed to the final slope via a narrow ice ridge. A variation on this route is to climb the first mentioned big couloir to the ridge seen from traverse around to Pluto Col.


  • P1
  • Alpine (Commitment) II
  • Alpine (Mt Cook) 2

 West Face – Southwest Ridge, II,2 II,2 0m
0

From Spaniard Valley climb up to and over scree until hard under the point at which Seven Sisters Ridge joins the ridge from Turret Head. Here a couloir of loose rock leads to a notch in the main ridge. The first detour necessary is made on the Spaniard Valley side but further up a detour is forced on the Earnslaw Glacier side on steep ice. Some earlier attempts at this route via Turret Head failed, one of these at the point where a detour on to the Earnslaw Glacier became necessary due to conditions, but otherwise this route is feasible.


  • P1
  • Alpine (Commitment) II
  • Alpine (Mt Cook) 2

 South Face – East Ridge, II,2 II,2 0m
0

From Earnslaw Burn climb to the col between Black Peak and the East Peak before traversing across the Earnslaw Glacier and ascending diagonally through icefalls to reach the ridge between the East and West Peaks to the west of the lowest point. Then follow the ridge, detouring as necessary on the glacier side.


  • P1
  • Alpine (Commitment) II
  • Alpine (Mt Cook) 2

 South Face, II,2 II,2 0m
0

Scramble up through lower bluffs and slightly right up through scree slopes until ledges sloping steeply up to the left give access through the main bluffs to the final easy slopes. Start on scrub covered ledges on the true right of the Earnslaw Burn, then ascend the right hand ice rib.


  • P1
  • Alpine (Commitment) II
  • Alpine (Mt Cook) 2

Images

Comments
Attribution
Allan Uren & John Cocks. Photos, Brain Wilkins & Lloyd Homer GNS Science.
UUID
 
24d255ae-5140-46bb-b7a1-1b47ff9f81c3