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[TR] Mt. Hood - Devils Kitchen Headwall 04/22/2018

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Trip: Mt. Hood - Devils Kitchen Headwall

Trip Date: 04/22/2018

Trip Report:

Peter and I took advantage of brilliant weather this past weekend to go climb Devils Kitchen Headwall on Mt Hood. I'd been eyeing this route all winter, waiting for the conditions and weather to align and allow an attempt. After Peter and I ran a 1500m time trial on Friday (4:03 and 4:05 respectively) we decided that due to lots of snow forecasted in the North Cascades and none in the South, we would head South to Mt. Hood. We left Bellingham Saturday afternoon and spent a surprisingly chilly night near the timberline parking lot. Following our 3:30 alarm we were skinning up hill by 4:15 in some bitter cold temperatures. Icy snow slowed our skinning progress a little (think drunk figure skater) and we opted to boot starting not far after the resort ends. We were in the crater around sun rise (~6:15) and then traversed around and got our gear sorted at the base of the route. We soloed steep snow to the first ice pitch where Peter took the sharp end and took us over the first two ice steps, which were in beautiful condition. The day was starting to warm and I finally got the blood flowing to my fingers so I took the next pitch, a full 60m with one ice screw to a picket belay. Peter got to my belay and continued up climbers right (planning on doing the right hand variation) but deemed that way to be entirely unprotectable and the climbing over the top looked difficult (rime in the sun is hard to climb....) He down climbed back to my belay and I started to lead out climbers left but found a steep drop of rime, leading me to realize that we had already stared up the right variation gully. Peter belayed me as a down climbed the rime face and started up the correct gully to another picket belay. Once Peter arrived, we un roped and soloed the steep snow and rime to the top, revealing a hot, beautiful summit. After some snackage and packing up we traversed toward our planned ski descent of Leuthold couloir. As we walked the highly exposed ridge we eyed a fun looking line that dropped down to our left, back into the crater. Seeing how far down the planned descent was, and not wanting to lose vertical feet on foot when we could ski, we opted to drop in here (not sure what it was, but it was a few hundred yards west of old chute). Skiing was extremely steep and hard (for our limited ability and 700 gram skis...) We survived and skied to the car by about 1:30. Hope everyone had a great weekend!

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Route is the obvious gully of the center, we branched left when we got near the top. We should have gone left earlier. 

IMG_0641.thumb.JPG.f1a6be34e792ec453c79344d8ca8c554.JPG

Looking up the first, pitch, lots of good ice. I should have taken pictures but it was cold!

Gear Notes:
Small ice rack, pickets, standard stuff.

Approach Notes:
Follow highway of people...
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