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emanuelrohss

Liberty Ridge -- best timing

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Posted (edited)

Hello CC community, 

We are a party of three planning to attempt Liberty Ridge on Rainier this summer season.

I am looking for wise input on the best timing, that is when during the summer season of this year, to make the attempt.

A forecaster told me that the snowpack around Rainier is running 150-175% of average as of now. We had been thinking about early July as weather generally seem more stable around then. But the more trip reports I read of successful Liberty Ridge ascents the more it seem to me like the Carbon glacier often is in pretty poor shape by June time already. If anyone with experience of the Carbon glacier would be willing to share their thought that'd be really appreciated.

All and any input that could help us determine the best time to go is most welcome.

Thanks!

Emanuel

Edited by emanuelrohss

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Go the earliest there is a weather window after the road opens. 

Also, snowpack AROUND Rainier doesn't correlate with glacial cover/recession.

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The above is great advice.  When we did it the road hadn't opened yet but it was snow free so it was a pretty easy bike ride to the trailhead.  I would recommend around mid/late May to just start looking for a good weather window.

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Absolutely agree. It's not just the glacier travel. The more of the garbage rock that Rainier is made out of that is buried under snow or held together by ice, the less likely you become a bowling pin.

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Yes, definitely ensure a good multi-day weather window for that one. Bike approach from hwy 410 (once it's open) to White River is a great way to do it. You will have that side of the mountain to yourselves.

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I would worry less about the condition of the Carbon, but rather the ridge itself. Once the lower part of the Ridge melts out it is like a giant pile of un-mortared bricks. I would suggest trying to go by the end of June to ensure adequate snow coverage. 

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