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Ian Lauder

[TR] Mount Terror - West Ridge 06/20/2021

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Posted (edited)

Trip: Mount Terror - West Ridge

Trip Date: 06/20/2021

Trip Report:

 

YouTube video: https://youtu.be/xpHcQ5-uq5g

 

3 day trip, early season. Crux of the trip were the raging stream crossings. Getting in during the morning was okay. But had to work to find a crossing on the way back with the streams rising. Went aways downstream on the last crossing and hopped a big rock to an island then climbed up to a pair of fallen logs and au chevaled one to get across.

We saw more bear crap on the trail this trip than the last 10 years combined. Literally about every couple hundred feet was a pile of bear poo. Heard some crashing through the brush on the way out pretty close to the trailhead. The poo thinned out once we got to Terror Creek but still saw some up on the climbers trail on the ridge.

Other than that its tough to follow the climbers trail in without constantly losing it. If you lose it don't venture too far, find it as soon as possible. From Terror creek it was almost 4000ft gain before we saw any running water for as much snow as there is up there.

The campsite at the col is under a giant 10ft mound of snow with just the edge visible. We carved out a tent platform in a whiteout just next to the rocks of the ridge.

Next morning had great weather and snow all the way from camp to within 10ft of the notch up the gully. Great conditions going up, didn't rope up, no moats forming yet. Then a short steep snow section up to the base of the rock climb.

Not sure why there are reports of 2 pitches of low 5th class. We did a 30 meter pitch of low 5th then it was easy scrambling from there.

We went to the false summit first (in hindsight should have gone into the right gully below the face further down. This meant a 4th class downclimb a hundred feet or so. There were some rap slings but we just downclimbed. It looked intimidating from further back but once on the left side of the face it was great 3rd class (some have said 4th class) scrambling with solid rock. Steep enough we did 3 rappels back down from existing slings. The rap stations were all looking pretty ratty so we left behind a couple slings to back them up. The step across to the true summit is exposed but easy on solid rock.

The summit register is in a crack right at the summit block. If you step up to the summit block, look down and its in a little white PVC tube in a crack.

The snow coming down the gully was a couple inches of soft mush over hardpack and we had to facein downclimb about 2/3 of it.

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Gear Notes:
60m skinny rope, light rack to #1, a few small nuts, ice axe, crampons

Approach Notes:
Its the Pickets, it sucks. Like the TR before us. If you loose the climbers trail, find it. Crux of the trip were the raging stream crossings.

Edited by Ian Lauder
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Posted (edited)

I exited the day before you went in, big beaver up to Wiley ridge/Luna area and 100% concur it was basically a breadcrumb trail of bear poop.  Had a surprise run in with one of them because I was not making enough noise but fortunately it ran away when I surprised it rather than at me lol.  Streams were extremely huge ha.

 

definitely pretty snowy up high and not a lot of easy water 

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Edited by NatDerox

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We did that Eiley Wiley Ridge in and out last year to Challenger. As much as I'd like to pull out the good camera gear and do the fantastic milky way shots I'm seeing more and more.  After an approach like that I just want to sleep.

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Posted (edited)

Cool trip and beta!  Where did the snow level start in earnest up there?  The last update I saw on the NP website says "4000'" (from a week ago).  Of course we have a heat wave this week, which could melt a lot of snow, but still would love to hear where you encountered consistent snow pack.

 

Edited by KaskadskyjKozak

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I'd say snow started consistent a bit higher like 4200ish in the trees. No postholing and we didn't punch through any bridges. Once you get out of the trees in the upper slopes the snow is probably 3-4 feet deep still. Biggest issue are how high the streams are running. The normal crossings are covered and even the one 500ft upstream on Terror Creek the normal log was a waterfall.  Still found 2 smaller logs to zig zag across.

 

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15 minutes ago, Ian Lauder said:

I'd say snow started consistent a bit higher like 4200ish in the trees. No postholing and we didn't punch through any bridges. Once you get out of the trees in the upper slopes the snow is probably 3-4 feet deep still. Biggest issue are how high the streams are running. The normal crossings are covered and even the one 500ft upstream on Terror Creek the normal log was a waterfall.  Still found 2 smaller logs to zig zag across.

 

thanks!  Yeah, I hear you on stream crossings - they'll be really raging this coming weekend

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One thing to maybe note is on our way in the 1st crossing 1.5 miles in from the trailhead was fine. But by 5pm on our way out it was raging and not crossable.  We went about 500ft downstream to where there are a handful of fallen logs that are over half the stream where its split into 2 steams.  We dropped some branches between 2 rocks that otherwise would have been a jump across, then au chevalled another log.  If the water was raging on the way in the au cheval would work fine but if those branches we dropped are swept away that could be a bitch to figure out how to get across.

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3 minutes ago, KaskadskyjKozak said:

thanks!  Yeah, I hear you on stream crossings - they'll be really raging this coming weekend

Be safe out there. With these temps we scrapped our Sinister climb for this weekend. Not sure what to do, but we're going to sit out anything big or that has stream fording.

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12 minutes ago, Ian Lauder said:

Be safe out there. With these temps we scrapped our Sinister climb for this weekend. Not sure what to do, but we're going to sit out anything big or that has stream fording.

I don't do well in high temps. I may be sitting out this weekend myself.  Good luck in whatever you do (if you go)

 

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