North Palisade

North Palisade has a collection of names from the 19th century. The Wheeler Survey referred to it as Northwest Palisade in 1878. The following year, Lil Winchell called it Dusy’s Peak after local rancher Frank Dusy. In 1895, Bolton Brown advocated yet another name, after David Starr Jordan. U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein, supported by U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer, has introduced legislation to rename the peak as “Brower Palisade”, in honor of environmentalist David Brower. There is significant opposition to this proposal.

The first ascent was made on July 25, 1903, by James S. Hutchinson, Joseph Nisbet LeConte and James K. Moffitt. They approached the area overland from south of the Palisades, and scouted possible routes from the summits of Marion Peak and Mount Sill. Armed with this intelligence, they planned to ascend the southwest chute of the U Notch, and find a way to bypass the rock face between the notch and the upper reaches of North Palisade. Around 13,100 feet (4,000 m), they followed a northward branch of this chute, and slowly climbed a difficult system of cracks. From here they found a catwalk ledge that took them to a series of icy gullies, bound toward the summit. These gullies were blocked by a pair of chockstones, requiring class 4 moves to pass. Beyond these obstacles, they crested the southeast ridge, and climbed a series of granite blocks to the summit.

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