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[TR] Abiel Peak - North Face Gully 03/10/2019

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Posted (edited)

Trip: Abiel Peak - North Face Gully

Trip Date: 03/10/2019

Trip Report:


I haven't seen any recent TRs, so posting...


Hiro and I picked Abiel Peak to be our next ice climbing destination. Since there are multiple routes we decided to come and see which one to climb [checkout the old TR and AlpineDave blog for options].

It turned out to be North Face Gully. Here is an overview of the climb:


Most of the route is hidden from the approach. Here you can see only the beginning of it at the bottom center:




Soft snow accumulated at the bottom. We spent plenty of time taking turns and cleaning it up:


There was decent ice under snow:


Most of the first pitch was a solid ice.

The second pitch was mostly snow. We did simul climbing. Looking down while at the 2nd pitch:


But simul climbing came to the end very soon, because the third pitch unexpectedly popped around a corner:


It is not vertical, but steeper that it looks like on the photo :o. Ice wasn't making it easier: at some places it was thin, at others - crumbly snow-ice mix. How does the saying go: placements are getting closer as pucker factor goes up? :)

Nevertheless we made it up and after that it was only about 30m of snow to a ridge. The ridge met us with sun, warmth and view to Rainier. When walking towards the summit there was a short section of snow covered boulders with lurking cavities in between them.

For a descent we went West staying on a ridge as it kinda circles clockwise. It was just walking. We came back to a car by a sunset. After eleven hours we returned to a car with Granite Mountain saluting us in sunset colors.

Gear Notes:
7 ice screws, 2 pickets (used one), 0.4, 0.5 & 1 cams (used all), small nuts (used few).

Approach Notes:
Solid footpath until Lake Annette. Crossed the lake.

Edited by specialforest

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