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Ulrich’s couloir

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Posted (edited)

Anyone else think Ulrich’s is a less shitty descent of Stuart than Cascadian?

I climbed the W ridge 5 years ago solo. I accidentally started down Ulrich and was several hundred feet down when I realized what happened. By that time I didn’t want to climb back up. I never cliffed out, but did find the nice steep 4th class slabs eventually gave way to slightly sketchy plunging in gravel that sent some large blocks tumbling. It took about 4 hours to get from summit to trailhead.

On Tuesday I climbed the N ridge with a partner c2c. It took 6 hours from summit to trailhead via the cascadian. Part of that was was fatigue from the long day and my partner’s microspikes not handling the snow well. But still, as the monotonous trudging went on and on I found myself questioning how the Cascadian became the standard descent. I suppose it’s simpler than Ulrich’s, and overall less exposed (though the steep snow we found at the start was comparable risk to the steep slabs in Ulrich’s, especially if you have the wrong gear for the conditions). But Ulrich’s is a more direct descent, probably snow free earlier than cascadian, and unless my memory deceives me, not that bad. Having gone both ways, I’d be inclined to try Ulrich’s again before Cascadian, especially if solo (smaller consequence to kicking rocks).

Curious what other people have experienced going that way.

Edited by JonParker

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