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Dhruv Garg

[TR] Sahale Mountain - Quien Sabe glacier 8/7/2017

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Trip: Sahale Mountain - Quien Sabe glacier


Date: 7/29/2017


Trip Report:

A couple of other folks were planning on doing Sahale over the weekend and since I didn't have any fixed plans, I decided to tag along. We decided to drive in the night before and sleep at the TH. And BTW, the TH doesn't really have a parking lot; just a very small pullout.


We woke up and left the TH at 6.30. The hike in was uneventful with one of the many streams assisting us to fill up on our water. After arriving to the trailhead, since we had planned to take the direct route up the Quiene Sabe glacier, the approach to the bottom of the glacier took some trivial route-finding (and we tried to put up and put back quite a few cairns on the way up).With the sun toasting us, we made it to the bottom of the glacier (~7000') around 10. The glacier around this time had some big crevasses opening up and our route was going to go somewhere around them.


We took our time roping and cramponing up and started up the glacier around 11. A Mounties team that had started before us had taken the traditional route up the left side of the glacier and had been seen heading up to the saddle earlier. So we knew where our route would eventually meet up with theirs on the upper glacier. The climb up to the merge definitely required some hairy crevasse crossings and end runs since there are some pretty big crevasses on the Quien Sabe. Morever, any fall after ~7600' will take you down a crevasse unless you have some mad-boy arrest skills.



making our way up the upper Quien Sabe glacier


Anyways, we got to the saddle between Boston and Sahale a little before 1. After unroping, we started the scramble (which I thought was a class 3 and nothing more) and made it to the summit around 1.30.



the final scramble to the summit


The plan from here on out was to descend via the Sahale arm. Since there was a large team learning how to rappel for the first time on the summit, a friend of mine just decided to down climb the summit block on the other side. A couple of us just waited there (until a little after 3) since I didn't feel comfortable downclimbing it, and rappelled down. Sahale glacier didn't have any crevasses on the climb down and we glissaded a part way through. To be honest, Sahale arm is one of the most beautiful camping spots I've ever seen. Since the other people in my climbing party are slow at making their way back via the long approaches, I decided to get down before them so that I could get the car from the Quien Sabe TH. All im all, it was a good (and uneventful) day to be in the mountains.



makes it all worth it


Trip times -

Quien Sabe glacier TH to bottom of glacier - 4 hours

Bottom of glacier to Boston-Sahale saddle - 2 hours

Saddle to Sahale summit - 30 mins

Summit to Sahale glacier TH - 3 hours


For Sahale Mountain GPX, Sahale Mountain PeakBagger TR.

For more visuals on the route, Flickr/Sahale Mountain.


Gear Notes:

1x 30m rope, a picket each (unused)

Edited by Dhruv Garg

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The camping looks good to go for my Grandson and I later this week...


Thanks for posting



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Nice, that's one of my favorite routes in the Cascades and a great way to finish with the scenic walk down Sahale arm.

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Nice TR on this route. I did the same itinerary (up the Quien Sabe and down the Arm) in 2000 with a guy who'd never climbed a thing and it went fine. With that in mind, I took my oldest son up there two days ago, on Sunday. His only prior climb is Mt. Adams via the Mazama Glacier last summer, and he'd never climbed on rock. But, he rows in college so his cardio fitness and ability to suffer are both very high.


We left Bellevue at 4:55 a.m. and departed the Boston Basin TH at 8:05. I believe we reached the summit at 2:00 or so. Our ascent included some on-the-job training on scrambling, which he found unnerving but is glad to have overcome. We met two nice pairs and a throng of lady bugs on the summit. Fortunately, one pair (Jerome and Mike?) had a 60m rope which we all used to rappel the standard route. More on-the-job training for my son, who clearly understood the catch phrase "lean back, relax, and enjoy!" In the past, I've used a 30m and made two rappels off the top. On Sunday, I didn't scout the whole face for mid-way slings but didn't see any either. Perhaps the rangers cleaned the tat? In any event, I'd want a 60m or two 30m next time.


Once on the snow, we headed down the Arm, chatting with hikers and photographing goats along the way. At Cascade Pass we ran into young hard men Zach (sp?) and Bobby who'd just climbed J'Berg's NE Buttress and exited via Doug's Direct. I quizzed them about the route, having done it in 1999 with Jim Nelson and Bob Davis. They reported that it's still wild and committing and shows little signs of traffic. Sadly, they saw no evidence of Jim's empty can of grape-flavored Fanta. The search continues and the reward stands.


Zach and Bobby kindly drove us down to our car which we reached at about 7:00 p.m. We sat down for dinner at Buffalo Run at about 8:00 and I proceeded to question our cute waitress from Ukraine. The other also-cute waitress is from Russia. How they ended up in Marblemount, of all places, is pretty amusing. The proprietor Marshall seemed quite pleased with his young, female foreign-born help.


All in all, the Quien Sabe/Sahale Traverse (or whatever you'd call it) makes for fun outing, even when Canadian smoke inhibits the otherwise terrific views.

Edited by Juan Sharp

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Sounds like you guys had fun. But yeah the smog did fudge it up a bit. I was up on Mt. Daniel and the pictures taken through out the day came out so washed out that no amount of Photoshop is gonna make them better, ugh :mad: !

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