Mt Stuart is an impressive peak. It has glaciers, local vertical relief over a mile, and it's composed of really clean granite. In our never-ending quest for adventure, Ross and I decided to attempt its Complete North Ridge in a single day. This way one gets five sustained, full-rope pitches of quality climbing, then never-ending scrambling and 5th mixed together, and finally the super-quality pitches of the Great Gendarme. Put it all together and you have 3,000 vertical feet of climbing in a gorgeous setting on some of the best rock to be found in the hills.
Despite errant hiking that led to an enchainment of South Ingalls Peak during our approach, we made it car-to-summit in about fourteen hours. This was mostly due to the fact that we simul-climbed all of the 2,000 vertical feet between the initial steep pitches and the Great Gendarme. Mutual trust and a willingness to stretch the rack go a long way. Here's to how much fun it is to cruise through the mountains with a great partner: thanks Ross.
Ross gets a look at Stuart from Ingalls Lake around sunrise.
Mt Stuart from the south after our descent