Climbing Gannett Peak, Wyoming's Highest Peak
Summit Elevation: 13,804' ......... Standard Pole Creek Trail Route from West
3rd and 4th Class scrambling with exposure
July 31, 2020
TRIP REPORT: I left camp at upper Titcomb Basin at 5:15. The snow was just soft enough for kicking steps, so I only used crampons near the top of Dinwoody Pass. At the pass, I took off the crampons and plunge-stepped down and across Dinwoody Glacier. The easiest route went around the right of a huge buttress at 11,700 and then west through a few crevasses near the north edge of the Dinwoody Glacier. The crevasses required a bit of careful routefinding, but they weren't a major obstacle. I then climbed an obvious snow-filled couloir, kicked steps in the snow without using crampons. Ascend the rocks rather than the steeper bottom part of the Gooseneck Glacier. The top of the glacier is considered the crux. At the top of the couloir I wandered up easier snow and rock toward the summit. I reached the summit about 9:15. After a short break and a few pictures, I started down. The weather was good, but I didn't want to be on top of Dinwoody Pass in a lightning storm. The snow was firm enough to support my weight and soft enough for kicking steps. I made good time and was back at camp before noon, just as it started to rain. The main requirements for climbing Gannett Peak are good basic mountaineering and backpacking skills, good physical condition, tolerance of thin air, and decent weather. While Gannett is certainly a lot of work, it was much easier than I had expected. I only used crampons for a short distance on Dinwoody Pass, and I never bothered using the ice axe. I call this a walk-up. Just be careful not to fall in a crevasse.
BELOW: Gannett Peak along Gooseneck Route from Bonney Pass BELOW: View of Titcomb Basin with both lakes from half way up Bonney Pass Dinwoody Glacier is 1200' below Bonney Pass. BELOW: View across the Gooseneck Glacier to Bonney Pass and beyond to Fremont Peak from summit.
ABOVE: Upper Gooseneck Glacier crossing
BELOW: four climbers from summit of Gannett