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Full day on the classic Southeast Buttress 5.6 of Cathedral Peak, Tuolumne Meadows
Timestamp Free: 2019.06.24 - 09:03:14
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Sierra Nevada Range
  (1 days)
Participants: Chris Daniel, Alex Joseph
Difficulty: 5: A multi-hour approach to 5 pitch, 5.6 climb on granite
An early season (June) ascent of one of the finest routes in Tuolumne Meadows (Southeast Buttress 5.6, 5 pitch) on Cathedral Peak.
One of the finest routes in Tuolumne Meadows.

This was the first trip to Tuolumne Meadows. We had arrived at SFO the previous night at 11pm (me from Toronto, Chris from Vernon). We had rented a car and drove much of the way to Yosemite before throwing the tent in the bush beside the highway at 3am.

In the morning, we woke early and headed straight for the Cathedral Peak trailhead. This was past Tenaya Lake and where the John Muir trail followed the road. There was little parking and we crammed our car on the road edge and hoped the others weren't heading for Cathedral as well.

Leaving quickly in the morning cold, the trail was initially easy to follow and it crossed the John Muir trail shortly into the walk. We continued up and then made the call to leave the trail to the left. It was a guess and we never were sure where best to do this. We quickly hit snow and spent a lot of the time walking on consolidated residual snow, at times waist deep. Following the drainage with a frozen creek, we wound upward through pines until we climbed above treeline into the meadows. This took more than an hour. [photo]P6180211a.jpg[caption]Approaching Cathedral Peak from the meadow[/photo]

Then we could see Cathedral Peak and we knew we were on track. Bee lining it towards the peak, we avoided much of the snow and arrived on the southeast side to an obvious worn start to the climb. [photo]P6180213a.jpg[caption]Approaching the base of the climb, looking to the northeast, Unicorn Peak in background[/photo]

[photo]IMG_4858a.jpg[caption]On the second pitch[/photo]

The granite looked beautiful. It was windy and a little fresh (~7C) and so up we went a little groggy from the previous 24 hours but knowing we didn't have a heck a lot of sunlight to get all the way back...

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