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Nelly

Ragged Ridge Traverse

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Does anyone have any first hand info regarding the Ragged Ridge Traverse from Easy Pass to 4th of July Pass? Im particularly interested in info regarding the route leading from the Meshachie Gl to the Katsuk Gl. Also, what is the travel like from Red Mountain to 4th of July pass: Open slopes, timber, green hell, etc?? Also, there are references regarding an old "miners trail" from Fisher Creek up to Red Mountain. Does it still exist? How visible it it? I see it as a possible bail out spot should we decide to forgo the trudge to 4th of July Pass.

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Just bringing this back to the top.........nobody has any info regarding the route from the Mesachaie Gl. to the Katsuk Gl.?? I believe the photos on the South wall of the Marblemount Ranger Station show most of the route. However, the photographs make the route look vertually impassable - which it surely isn't.......!

 

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Katsuk glacier is not part of the Ragged Ridge traverse route, in my opinion. It is a side trip. There is no good way to backpack from Mesahchie glacier to Katsuk glacier while staying high. I have done it, crossing the north ridge of Mesahchie at 6800 feet, but I don't consider it backpackable. To traverse from Mesahchie glacier to the peaks west of Katsuk and Kimtah, you need to drop into the head of Panther Creek below 5400 feet, then climb back up to the east edge of Kimtah glacier. Your traverse route won't cross Katsuk glacier at all, but you could certainly jaunt up there to bag Katsuk and/or Kimtah peaks.

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I know that part of the traverse goes on the south side of the ridge crest: From the high basin SW of the summit of Mesahchie, you can traverse to Katsuk; then on to Kimtah and to the summit of Cosho. The route would be very scrambly, rocky, some ups and downs, with some route-finding thrown-in, and limited bivy sites.

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Dale said:

I know that part of the traverse goes on the south side of the ridge crest: From the high basin SW of the summit of Mesahchie, you can traverse to Katsuk; then on to Kimtah and to the summit of Cosho. The route would be very scrambly, rocky, some ups and downs, with some route-finding thrown-in, and limited bivy sites.

 

You've done this? How do you get to the high basin SW of Mesahchie? Traverse Mesahchie's south flank? Climb up from Fisher Creek? Cross over from Katsuk glacier? Sorry to sound skeptical, but this route doesn't make any sense to me.

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Lowell:

Notice I am not describing the whole traverse, just part of it. Also, I am not recommending it. Route-finding errors in this terrain could be costly. To traverse the south slope of Mesahchie would be seriously ugly, I believe. You can access the basin from the Fisher Creek trail (or from the summit of Mesahchie); you can see where the basin is from the trail- it is a gain of roughly 1,000' from the trail.

 

Also, I have no idea what is on the west side of the summit of Cosho, or whether it is feasible to descend on the west side or bypass the summit.

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Lowell

 

Can you provide some detail regarding your crossing the the N. Ridge @6800 ft. It jumps off the map as "doable" and I seem to recall a description indicating the gulley leading to 6800 is 3/4 class with some exposure. Also, once at 6800 feet on the N. Ridge, what's the transition like to the Katsuk Glacier? Also, can you elaborate on your definition of a "backpackable" route vs. a climing/scrambling route - thanks

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Traversing from Easy Pass under Mesahchie to a point below Katsuk and then ascending Katsuk is not a difficult route.

 

Though I haven't traveled it, the south slope from Katsuk to Kimtah and Cosho is a series of ribs and gullies with some loose rock that would take time. From looking at it, it could possibly be no more difficult than scrambling, hard to say for sure.

 

Here's a snapshot view from below Katsuk. The snowfield in the distance is Red Mtn Ridge (below Snowfield Pk).

S_Slope_Ragged.jpg

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Nelly said:

Lowell

 

Can you provide some detail regarding your crossing the the N. Ridge @6800 ft. It jumps off the map as "doable" and I seem to recall a description indicating the gulley leading to 6800 is 3/4 class with some exposure. Also, once at 6800 feet on the N. Ridge, what's the transition like to the Katsuk Glacier? Also, can you elaborate on your definition of a "backpackable" route vs. a climing/scrambling route - thanks

 

In June 1978, my brother Gordy and I traversed from the Mesahchie glacier to the saddle on the north ridge at about 6800 feet. There's a little pinnacle there which shows plainly on the map. We bivied there, on the edge of Katsuk Glacier. The next day we climbed the NW ridge of Mesahchie. We were travelling pretty light (since we planned to carry over) and my recollection was that the traverse was loose and exposed and dependent on seasonal snow cover. Since this was over 25 years ago, and I'm getting old and foggy, maybe you won't have a problem. My recollection was that it was not the sort of thing I would want to do with a multi-day load. You're mileage may vary. There's no substitute for taking a look at it yourself.

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Thanks for all the information. Indeed, we intend to go take a look and see what we can do.

 

 

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