Chicago Transplant wrote:You can start up Powell before you get to Kneeknocker and follow some grass ramps/ledges until you can get to a break in the ridge, cross it, and pick up the upper standard route and avoid kneeknockers snow and keep it 2+/easy 3. Kiefer and I picked up the ridge somewhere along there as the ridge right out of the pass is harder. We ended up going down one of the gullies Floyd mentions as a possible snow climb, it was a loose mess dry.
I've done that route you describe, but only as a descent with Steve Knapp about 20 years ago. I attempted the ridge over to Eagles Nest, but dropped down into the upper Cataract basin after bailing off the ridge and then reclimbed Powell via a nasty couloir west of the summit to retreive Steve off the summit and descend your route. One of the dumbest things I ever did, telling Steve to wait at the summit of Powell, when he could have waited at the north pass. Hey, live and learn, young and dumb, whatever! Plus side was we saw a lot of goats at that pass!
That north pass is definetly a 2+ climb with views of both Piney and Cataract drainages, Pk C & Eagles Nest westside problems!
Scott P: Peak C is gonna blow your mind. I didn't do it from the classic snowclimb, but it is a great climb from any route!
Palikona: Whatever you end up doing, this is gonna be an epic trip for you, The Gores are that beautiful and rugged!