Sill + Polemonium

In early September my friends Adam Noe and I drove to Bishop to attempt to climb Mt. Sill and Polemonium. To approach we took Bishop Pass and then instead of going over Thunderbolt pass, we took the more circuitous Knapsack Pass. From Knapsack we cut across the Palisade Basin to Potluck pass and began climbing. We mistakenly started climbing Sill Peak instead of Mt. Sill. At this point Noe was not feeling well enough to continue, and Adam graciously agreed to walk him down. I descended and then climbed an easy class 2-3 chute to Mt. Sill which had a beautiful summit. At this point I was quite tired, but the views drove me along the ridge line to Polemonium peak. The ridge was good class 2-3 scrambling but the last 100 feet of the peak were very exposed class four. I considered turning around but instead put on my climbing shoes and climbed up to the top. It was a long descent down, but the views from the top of both peaks made the whole trip well worth it. 11/15 CA 14ers.

Adam climbing Bishop Pass, Mt. Agassiz in the background
Looking North from Knapsack Pass
North Palisade 
Noe’s turn around point
Polemonium Peak from the summit of Mt. Sill
Looking back on Mt. Sill
Polemonium Peak, with North Palisade and Starlight in the background

One reply on “Sill + Polemonium”

Wow, that’s quite possibly the most roundabout way I have heard of to get to those peaks! Even Scimitar Pass (South Fork Big Pine Creek) would probably require less effort to reach that side of Sill. Nice work tagging Polemonium as well — that knife-edge is a really cool feature. Now to return for the traverse…

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