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chucK

Washington Pass TR

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Despite my desperate pleas nobody from CC.com wanna/canna go climbing with me yesterday....so I just did it myself mad.gif.

 

I headed up to Washington Pass, where I thought it might be kinda cool.

 

Inspired by a suggestion given in a thread last week, I thought I'd give the N Ridge of Cutthroat a try. Left the truck at around 7am and headed up into the basin East of Cutthroat ('73 Variation as per Beckey). Well, this may have been a mistake as there is a steep exposed move or two that need to be done on very questionable rock to get up to the 'prominent notch'. I would've backed off, but the soloist I'd just bought via this thread gave me enough of a false sense of security to continue. I pulled it out of my backpack. Then, I pulled out the instructions I'd printed for it just last night, and I got to studying. No choss broke, so I didn't get a final exam on my reading comprehension.

 

From the notch I saw that I couldve just walked to this point if I would've taken the Western approach ('40 route per Beckey). Oh well.

 

One more scary pitch and from there it was all clear sailing. The rock quality improved greatly, and the technical climbing was basically done. There are a few entertaining optional clean cracks to be found along the way, and I took a couple laps on one especially sweet finger crack in a clean LFC. I would say the N Ridge is sorta boring if you're after 5th class rock, but a pretty nice airy ridge scramble if that floats yer boat.

 

One rap down into the notch and one past the choss death lieback and it's time to pack at the head of the bowl.

 

After a pleasant stroll down through the fairy meadows dotted with fun clean white boulders, I arrived back at the truck at around 2:30. It seemed too soon to go home. I've got this rule about not climbing less time than the actual to/from driving takes, so I thought maybe I'd knock off one of my alternate plans, the Beckey Route on Lib Bell.

 

I rested and relaxed a bit before heading off on this part, but let me tell you, the approach up the scree gulley of death to the notch was not really pleasant at 3:45 on the hottest day of the year cry.gif.

 

Beckey Route went fairly well. Took some time trying to find the easiest easiest variation at every option (ended up taking chimneys almost everywhere). I was really sucking wind when scrambling up the sections that didn't require hands. I was beat.

 

I had intended on using the soloist to toprope solo the Overexposure Route and really hammer the lid onto the end of a long day but when I got to the anchors there was another party there rapping from the Lib Crack route. They offered to let me rap on their chord. Phew! Gave me the excuse to save the CFU Overexposure plan for another day.

 

Back down the scree gulley of death. No water. Gave the Lib Crack guys a ride back to their rig then headed home.

 

Listened to Meat Puppets, screaming down Hwy 20, 70-degree wind blasting through the cab, googling at all those big-ass headers in the soft end-of-day light. thumbs_up.gif

 

A Red Bull and TVP burrito from Marblymount got me home safely without one scary freeway dream.

 

I woulda showed at Pub Club ~10:30 but I didn't know where it was the_finger.gifyellaf.gif.

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nice TR, chucK. thumbs_up.gif

that L. Bell gully musta been screamin' hot, was there last weekend, similar experience. curoius re: your confidence in your new soloist (reading comprehension test), as I'm considering one.

 

Lastly, which is the quicker route back: driving 20 straight to I-5, or via Darrington on 530?

chucK said:

One rap down into the notch and one past the choss death lieback and it's time to pack at the head of the bowl.

Beavis --> yellaf.gif

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Seems like that soloist thingy could hold a fall, but it's scary enough to be taking a lead fall when you've got a partner around to help you out should you get banged up enough to require it. Being out totally alone somewhere is even more scary. I'll be sticking with high-percentage stuff with the soloist I figure (or using to toprope). I think DBerdinka's still got one for sale CHEEP! check it out.

 

 

I'm not sure about the drive-time comparison, but Mattp appears to be. He will tell you with the drop of a hat that the Darr->Rockport way beats Hwy 20. I took Mattp's advice. It seems pretty fast ~3:15.

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One rap down into the notch and one past the choss death lieback and it's time to pack the bowl.
mushsmile.gif

 

Smokin' TR chucK

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Lastly, which is the quicker route back: driving 20 straight to I-5, or via Darrington on 530?

 

Darrington is faster and more scenic.

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chucK said:

 

I'm not sure about the drive-time comparison, but Mattp appears to be. He will tell you with the drop of a hat that the Darr->Rockport way beats Hwy 20. I took Mattp's advice. It seems pretty fast ~3:15.

 

Came back the darrington way Sunday and seems to be the way to go with all the crowds heading back at that time.

 

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I actually measured those two routes a while back. From the point where you take the Arlington exit off of I-5 to Rockport it is about five miles shorter going the Darrington way as opposed to the Sedro Wooley way. But there's more to it than that. In going the Darrington way, you will be slowed down less often and for less amounts of highway since the towns are smaller (essentially only Arlington and Darrington slow you down in town). Whereas, the area around Sedro Wooley is one long clusterfuck of traffic with a lot more traffic lights. Then you've got to deal with possibly congested traffic on I-5 through Burlington and Mt. Vernon. All this and I'm not even mentioning that sorry ass town called Concrete.

 

All told, my assessment having drove both routes a number of times is that the Darrington way is up to 20 minutes shorter each way. However, there are more food choices in Sedro Wooley, thus possibly compelling climbers to go that way back.

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Ah yes, one of those humorous moments in Klenke's history of climbing. But, Mark, you know you loved the excitement of it all. All that Canadian pot you were transporting incognito under the back seat must have been why you were sweating so much. grin.gif

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Chuck, thanks for the ride, I didn't know you had such big plans for the day. Way to go on the double routes. Too bad we gave you an excuse to bail on your full plan!

 

 

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No problem man. It just allowed me to accomplish maximal chestbeaterdom by chestbeating about something I haven't even done. thumbs_up.gif

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