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July 27, 1937 - Image 4

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1937-07-27

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TUESDAY, JULY 27, 1931



Mt. Lucania,Hitherto HighestUnclimnbed
Peak On Continent, Is Conquered A tLast


EDITOR'S NOTE: The following is a
first-hand account of1the ascent of Mt.
Lucania, highest peak heretofore un-
climbed in North America, written for
the Associated Press by Bradford Wash-
burn. Jr.. of the Harvard Institute of
Geographical Exploration.
VALDEZ, Alaska, July 24.-A)-
The special flag of the National Ge-.
ographic Society flies today from the
17,150-foot peak of Mount Lucania
amid the drifting snow and the ice
of what was the highest unclimbed
peak in North America.
Robert Bates of Philadelphia and I
reached the summit of the lofty
mountain July ninth: Twelve days
later we reached Burwash landing
at the northern end of Kluane Lake
after the first crossing on foot from
Alaska to Canada over the great
northern peaks of the St. Elias range.
Reach Mount Steele
After climbing Mount Lucania we
also ascended Mount Steele, which
rises to an altitude of 16,600 feet on
the eastern flank of the same pass of
which Mount Lucania is the eastern
rampart. The climb up Steele marked
the second ascent of Canada's high-
est peak, first climbed in 1935 by
the Wood Yukon Expedition of the
American Geographical Society. Our
expedition was sponsored by the Har-
vard Institute of Geographical Ex-
ploration and the New England Mu-
seum of Natural History.
Our ascent began June 18 when
Pilot Robert Reeve flew Bates and
myself to the Walsh Glacier from
Valdez. Our plane was equipped
with skiis surfaced with stainless
steel, which enabled us to take off
from the mudflats of Valdez and land
on the snow-covered glacier. The
surface ice proved so broken up by
unexpected early thaws that Reeve
was barely able to get back to Valdez
after three unsuccessful attempts to
take off.
This made it impossible for Russell
Dow of Woodsville, N. H., and Nor-
man Bright of Sunnyvale, Calif., to
join us at the glacier. Bates and I,
unable to fly back with Reeve as the
added weight would have prevented
his taking off, there thus marooned
on the glacier. Our only practical
way to return to civilization was to go
into Canada over the peak on Mount
Start Out On Foot
We were certain that once on top
we could get down into the Yukon
territory safely by using the same
route climbed by the Wood expedi-
tion. So after two days of prepara-
tion, we sledged a 300-pound load of
supplies by hand to an advanced
cache at an altitude of 9,000 feet, five
miles farther up the valley, and six
miles from the main mountain pass.
It snowed almost continuously, the
fresh snow blotting out our trail and
making it necessary to keep our
camps very close together so that we
could move supplies in short relays.
Both of us fell into hidden snow-
covered cracks constantly, and drag-
ging each other out on the rope be-
came almost a routine. We marked
the trail ahead with willow twigs
planted 60 feet apart in the snow.
On July first we established a camp,
stocked with food for 30 days, at the
10,000 foot high base of the great
buttress which rises from the head of
Walsh Glacier to the lofty pass be-
tween Lucania and Steele. Fresh
snow which fell on the steep slopes
forced us to establish intermediate
camps dug into the crest of the ridge
at 12,000 and 13,800 feet before we
would finally pack our equipment into
the upper pass.
Temperatures Drop Rapidly
Temperatures now dropped rapidly,
and during the week at the pass camp
hovered between zero and 15 below
every night. Climbing conditions be-
Summer Trips Are
Very Well Attended
(Continued from Page 1)

state in the Union. A special feature
of the collection of buildings trans-
ferred bodily to this 200-acre village,
is the Thomas A. Edison group, con-
sisting of the original Menlo Park
laboratory, the inventor's library, and
his first Menlo Park factory. A typ-
ical Michigan town of 80 years ago
surrounds a village green.
Two remaining excursions are the
trip to Put-in-Bay, Lake Erie, August
4, and a final tour through the Ann
Arbor News building, where the party
will observe a modern newspaper
plant in operation. There is no charge
for the last tour, he said.
Hills near Peiping, China, are dot-
ted withdummy Tibetan fortresses
,rected by the Emperor Chien Lung
to train his army for a successful
conquest of Tibet at the time of the
American revolution.
Beautifully furnished, 5 rooms
in duplex. Southeast section.
Faculty owner on leave of ab-
scence. Available for one year
starting Sept. 1st. $85 includ-
ing heat and water.

came so wretched after a 20-inch fall
of snow July third, that we were
forced to abandon a good deal of our
food, one sleeping bag, an air mat-
tress,, and to cut the bottom out of
our tent to seduce weight
A sudden break in the weather
July 8 gave us a chance for a swift
removal to a location 4,000 feet from
the peak.
The following morning dawned ab-
solutely cloudless and we decided to
make a desperate effort to reach the
top of Lucania before the weather
changed. Our food was getting low
and we wished an ample margin for
our attack on Mount Steele. After
a bitterly cold night we left camp at
eight a.m. and started up the great
northern ice wall of the mountain.
The weather was flawless and the
views over Alaska and Canada superb
beyond words, but climbing was ter-
rifically arduous.
Hidden Crevasses Add Danger
Constantly roped together to avoid
the danger of hidden crevasses, we
managed to reach a 16,000 foot notch
between the second and third of
Lucania's four peaks. We had a bite
to eat. Another peak 500 feet high
lay between us and the summit cone
which rose just to the left at the
head of an appalling cliff of rock and
I shall never forget the view from
the pass. It was still, almost cloud-
less, and every peak of the St. Elias
range was in sight, a vast ice pano-
rama which cannot be surpassed in
grandeur anywhere on earth, except
possibly by the Himalayas of India.
At 2:30 we put on our ice creepers
and tackled the ridge. It was ex-
ceedingly steep, one side dropping off
10,000 feet, and was of hard ice
crusted with a veneer of wind-packed
snow. We made its summit at 3:15,
and across a small saddle-like pass
saw the final summit cone of Lucania.
Victory Lies Ahead
We could see two excellent routes
to the summit and for the first time
felt certain victory lay ahead. In a
steep pitch of ice-encrusted powder
snow we reached the lower end of
the summit ridge and tackled the last
300 feet. At 4:15 the last hump
seemed to lie but a few yards ahead
but to our dismay another peak
rose to the west of us. But this time
there was no mistake and climbing a
hundred paces through frost feathers
and loose snow at 4:30 we clambered
out onto the final peak, a beautiful
little ridge of snow-covered ice, sharp
as a knife and only a dozen feet in
length. We fairly cheered with joy.
The view from the summit of Lu-
cania is superb beyond description.
To the east lay Canada beneath a
tossing sea of magnificent thunder
storms. To the west, south and north
stretched a jagged endless mass of
Has Two Sides,
Keeler Asserts
Exceptionality in children has two
sides, with those children above the
normal being on one side and those
below the normal on the other side,
Prof. L. W. Keeler of the education
school told a group yesterday in the
auditorium of University High School.
Speaking on "Procedure Used In
Instructing Exceptional Children,"
Professor Keeler said that exceptional
children can not be taught as nor-
mal children. "And," he continued,"
these children have just as much
right for education as normal chil-
"There are several types of excep-
tional children," Professor Keeler as-
serted. "There are those that have
need of special education because of
physical defects and nervous dis-
turbances, there are those that don't
have the normal intelligence and
there are those on the other end-
the very gifted persons that have
higher than normal intelligence."

brilliant snowclad peaks.
It was late in the day and though
there was scarcely a breath of wind
the air was exceedingly cold. We
made a complete panorama of pic-
tures to help fill in blank spots on
the map, and then descended hastily
toward our base camp 4,000 feet be-
low, reaching it after another long
struggle in the bottomless powder
Find Woods' Trail Markers
Moving back to our pass camp, we
next packed two forty-pound loads of
food, and gasoline for fuel, to the
15,000-foot altitude on Mount Steele.
The following morning, at 10 below,
we struggled slowly up the last slopes
of Mount Steele. Below the summit
the cloudless weather held, an even
clearer day than on Mount Lucania.
At 1:45 p.m. we reached the summit
of Steele where to our amazement
Bates located a large bundle of trail
markers jammed in the snow on the
very peak by the Wood expedition
nearly two years ago.
We now had three days of perfect
weather, and if we camped where we
were we risked being marooned by an
oncoming storm. With clouds brew-
ing in the west, we broke our packs,
reducing their weight a third, and
plunged over the edge in as breath-
taking descent as one could imagine.
Snow conditions were abominable, but
after discarding even more of our
equipment we made camp safely be-
side Wolf Creek Glacier. The follow
ing day we reached Donjey River, 20
miles farther down the valley, with
our food rations reduced to less than
half a pound each. These rations
consisted of dried beef, powdered
gravy, powdered soup, powdered milk,
two slices of bacon, one half pilot
cracker and vitamin tablets, all
packed in tiny paraffined bags.
Finally on July 17 after a 40-mile
detour to ford the river, we unexpect-
edly met a ten-horse pack train
bound for a nearby hunters' lodge and
laden with delicious food. We re-
traced our steps withnthem a few
miles at their invitation and gorged
with them in their spacious tent for
two solid days of sunshine, peace and
luxury before riding into Burwash
Landing on Lake Kluane.
Montague Goes
Before Judoe
For Hearing
LOS ANGELES, July 26.- (A) -
Smiling and affable, John Montague,
golf's recently unmasked "Mystery
Man," came into court today on
charges of participating in a New
York robbery and greeted three east-
ern officers, "Well, boys, glad to see
Municipal Judge Wilbur Curtis
postponed Montague's arraignment
until Aug. 9 pending Gov. Frank M.
Merriam's action on New York's ex-
tradition request.
Montague is charged with having
been one of four men who robbed a
Jay, N.Y., roadhouse of $750 in 1930.
His true name is La Verne Moore,
eastern authorities said.
In Sacramento, the governor's of-
fice received 66 appeals to refuse ex-
tradition. Most of them were from
screen actors and scene artists with
whom the defendant has become fast
friends during seven years in Holly-
Indications that the extradition
hearing will be held in Los Angeles
were seen when the governor, who is
here, telephoned his assistant secre-
tary in Sacramento to bring the file
on the Montague case to his Los An-
geles office tomorrow.










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