Sill hill still chill pill

24 Aug 1995 - by David Wright

Debbie Benham and I climbed Mt. Sill the weekend of Aug 24. Debbie is going to write the official history of the journey, but an opportunity like this only comes along rarely (what can you do with the word "Whitney"?).

The nights just got below freezing but I still did a lot of shivering in my minus 5 degree [Farenheit] bag. "Your mileage may vary."

Both Roper's and Secor's description of the route from the Polemonium Glacier are fairly useless; we sat there arguing which peak was Sill! It didn't help that my compass said that the noontime sun was in the east. Anyway, we climbed the only peak we felt up to trying, and, lucky us, it was Sill. Here's my description of the final part of the route:

Ascend the scree field (lucky for us it was still snow) into Polemonium Bowl. Cross the terminal moraine of the Glacier, keeping to the right. You will see three peaks ringing the Bowl. To your left is Peak 13,962, ahead is Polemonium Peak, and to the right is Sill. The tops of Peak 13,962 and Polemonium are obvious; the top of Sill is not. Ascend the chute just past the moraine ridge; if your compass works, it will be on a Soutwest face. The lower portion of the chute is very loose small rock and sand, but not at all steep. Higher up, where it steepens, a ridge splits this chute and the right hand portion is firm rock. After reaching the summit ridge, traverse to the left to the summit. The only obstacle is a 10 foot notch that requires down and up climbing large blocks. However there is no exposure so even neophytes can handle it. On the descent the sandy (north) chute is the easiest.

To file a trip report, please fill in the Report Entry form or contact the webmaster.