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Dru

New Edition - CAG Vol III (Red Beckey)

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Can a Moderator please make this post sticky?

 

Fred Beckey is currently working on revisions and updates for the third volume of the Cascade Alpine Guide Vol III - the red one - Rainy Pass to Fraser River.

 

If you have come across any inaccuracies in the 2nd edition, or have new routes or improved access/route info to contribute, please send details either directly to Fred or post them here (not that Fred is lurking here but the forum makes a convenient place where those contributing can see what others have to say and summarized info will be provided to him).

 

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Well, for starters, I sure would like to see the peak elevations put back in the index. When he removed those, this was a big reduction in information. It was probably done for ease of publication purposes. Granted, many of the elevations he originally listed are incorrect or out-of-date (I can remedy this with updated values but only if he agrees to put them back in the index).

 

I have other emendations to offer, but will present those separately.

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I'd like to see Tami Knight's Yak Pk ice route.

hopefully becky does a good job gathering info, cuz there's lots done since (and before but not included) the last edition. of course, there's Carlos Rossi Memorial Tower! bigdrink.gifbigdrink.gifbigdrink.gif

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we just spent 5 hrs doing Cdn side approaches and routes and its mostly done smile.gif Dewdney Creek road and 8 Mile Cr road will be included in the table if you ever wondered why they weren't listed yellaf.gif

 

i forgot the ice route! got s face direct on northgraves in though...but I bet it (ice)'ll be in WCI vol 2. although in the CAJ it says the ice route wasnt in so they climbed 800m of powder snow on granite or something silly like that.

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Scott Johnson posted a topo of Gato Negro this summer, a worthy new 11-pitch route on the W. side of Silver Star. Just search for GATO and he should find the info on Scott/Larry's FA. Descent from the pinnacle of "Whine Spire" is via two single rope raps into the obviously terrifying descent gully to the South. BobbyP and I did the 2nd and would probably be happy to share whatever additional beta.

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What's the deadline for routes? I didn't get a chance last summer, and I have some good routes planned in june.

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Mt. Herman is not in the second edition of Red Beckey as its own separate mountain but is in as part of the "Table Mountain-Ptarmigan Ridge Trail" write up. It is a good winter outing. Here is how I would right up the route description.

 

Before Herman's Saddle leave the trail at 5000 feet and then head towards the saddle west of point 5723. Drop down and then ascend to the SE slope of Mt. Herman. The final 200 feet is class 3.

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Mt. Herman is not in the second edition of Red Beckey as its own separate mountain but is in as part of the "Table Mountain-Ptarmigan Ridge Trail" write up.

 

Intentionally

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Compound Fracture III 5.10-, E. Face Bacchus Tower.

 

Bypassed snow couloir on rh side via short 5th class rock sections

intermixed with several hundred ft of 3rd class continuing up loose

scree on rock until level with lower section of broken face. Inspected

a direct line on rh side of face from ledge through crack system and

small roof but abandoned that for short scramble up cleaver in rh gully

transitioning back to face about 100' up. From top of cleaver, traverse

left and up to face. Climb and stem chimney to reach ledge, traverse

left until beneath hand crack. Climb crack to a roof and upper face

(5.10-). Climbing toward and then on ridge, find summit (2p mid 5th ).

Not highly recommended but has a couple of quality pitches - a good

option for the approach day for Clean Break.

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Windy Peak

1. The Windy Peak Trail (the one that starts from Long Swamp and ascends past Hickey Hump) is actually 7 miles long, not 9 miles as you state. This "new" mileage was confirmed two ways:

A. a mileage on a sign at the junction with the trail going east to Irongate (about 5 miles north of Hickey Hump)

B. my topo software

2. There is apparently a new trail west of the Windy Peak Trail that is two miles shorter. The new trail is called the Windy Creek Trail. The trailhead for this is approximately 3 miles west of Long Swamp on FR-300. The Windy Creek Trail starts at ~5,560 ft and climbs 5 miles in a generally NNE direction to the summit. It junctions with the Windy Peak Trail a couple hundred yards below the summit.

 

Jack Mountain

There is a shortcut class-4 route to Jack's South Face from Little Jack that warrants more consideration since it will probably save about 2 hours round trip. (Plus, it avoids the brush farther below the South Face.) Sergio Verdina and I did this route in September 2002. After where you state in your guide, "then bear downhill (NE) along the cliff base" this is what we did:

On the downhill traverse at 5,600 ft at the base of the buttress forming the lower part of the SE-bearing spur ridge coming off of Pt. 8161, we turned left (due north) and followed the base of the buttress between rock and brush for a hundred feet or so. There, the terrain opened up for easy walking until cliffs confronted us. We worked our way up through the cliffs and gullies closely left (west) of the first major stream course plunging through a canyon. This canyon presents a further impasse going east unless you get above the cliffs. On the return trip we found an easier way through this cliff where it abuts the aforementioned stream course. We dubbed this way the "Zigzag Route." It is this route that can be used on the ascent and the descent with only minor difficulties. However, a sketch would be helpful. I have attached a rough version. If you should choose to accept this alternate route and sketch, then I would be happy to draw one up that meets the current visual standards of your guide. After surmounting the cliffs and crossing the stream, it was a straightforward climb NE up steep heather to the corner at 6,800 ft on the SE-bearing spur ridge coming off of Pt. 8905. From this corner, it is a simple traverse to the base of the South Face, whereupon our route re-followed that of your write-up (more or less).

 

Here is what I would say regarding the Zigzag Route (it seems to me this should be considered the standard route from Little Jack): When at 5,600 feet at the base of the SE-bearing spur-ridge of Pt. 8161, turn north and climb along the rock wall of the buttress for a short distance until the terrain opens up. Continue north for a couple hundred yards until a cliff to the NW and a canyon to the NE present an impasse. Locate a ramp bearing NE along the base of the cliff that goes through a short evergreen squeeze tunnel and thereafter becomes a ledge. The ledge terminates about 50 ft farther along. At the terminus, make an eight-foot step up (class 4) to another ledge that goes back left (west) about 50 feet to above the aforementioned tunnel. Make another step up (easier) to the next ledge that goes back right 60 ft or so. This ledge makes a jog upward at its east end (class 4) and more or less ends just beyond a scrub evergreen. Use the evergreen to green-belay yourself up to a short, grassy face (class 3 or 4) then bear right to a large evergreen patch. Footing here is hidden underneath but the evergreens should hold you snug to the rock. Keep going straight up from one evergreen patch to the next. Above this second patch there is a scree ledge that crosses the watercourse just above the canyon (easy). From here, it is easy all the way to the South Face. Note: it may be advisable to do a running belay up this zigzag. There are ample trees to girth-hitch runners to but rope drag could be a problem. A 30m rope should suffice.

The foregoing is obviously fairly long, hence the reason for including a sketch. (An annotated photograph would be even better.) With a sketch or annotated photo, the foregoing description can be condensed.

 

Here is the sketch in its current style:

945Jack_Zigzag.jpg

 

Ptarmigan-Lago Traverse

A class 2-3 traverse can be made between Ptarmigan Peak and Mt. Lago. A cursory mention of this seems warranted. The only difficulty en route is to locate the eroded, talus ledge on the west side of Pt. 8165. It is not really possible to climb up and over Pt. 8165 due to a class-5 wall on the NW corner. The ledge is class 3 rubble. It bypasses Pt. 8165 entirely about 50 feet below the top. Also, it is probably less of a hassle to climb up and over Dot Mountain as opposed to around its SE slope.

 

Two pictures of the traverse and the bypass ledge:

945Dot_Ptarm_fr_south_anno.jpg

945Pt_8165_fr_south_anno.jpg

 

Traverse to Lost from Butte Pass

A traverse can be made to Lost Peak (in the Pasayten) from Butte Pass by way of Pass Butte. If coming from Shellrock Pass, this is the best route as it avoids all the scree slopes on the SW flank of Lost. From Butte Pass, the idea is to hike the pass divide eastward and then directly up class 3 gullies and talus to the ridge crest between Pk 8211 and Pass Butte. Turn right and traverse the ridge around to Lost. No difficulties. The SW flank of Lost makes for an excellent scree descent but I wouldn't wish it on anyone for an ascent route from Monument Creek.

 

Ptarmigan Creek

When I went through there in August 2001, the trail down Ptarmigan Creek on the north side of Butte Pass was heavily windfallen. It seems the Forest Service no longer feels it necessary to clear trees from unpopular trails within the Pasayten Wilderness.

 

Route up to Big Craggy Basin (to camp)

If climbing up to the basin encircled by Big Craggy, West Craggy, and Pt. 8112, I found that the SW side of Copper Glance Creek was mostly open meadow-like travel between the talus acclivity at the base of Pt. 8112 and the full-on trees farther to the east. The creek descends through here. It was very easy going all the way up to the basin.

 

Mt. Bigelow is NOT an "all-talus" hike from Eagle Creek

The route up Mt. Bigelow from Eagle Creek (Upper Eagle Lake) is most definitely not an all-talus hike as you state in your previous edition. If you were referring to a route over Horsehead Pass then around the west side to the summit, then you ought to state it as much. The east side of the South Ridge of Bigelow is a shear wall all the way from the summit to Pt. 8202 a half-mile south. The (easiest) route up the east side of Mt. Bigelow from Upper Eagle Lake is as follows:

From the NW end of the lake, hike NW up talus and through minor cliff bands to the upper talus and boulder slope. Turn north and climb all the way to the the East Ridge immediately below the summit tower. Climb exhilaratingly exposed class 3 along the NE wall of the tower through a small notch to a shallow class-3 gully on the left (south). Scramble this gully to the top.

 

A picture of the upper east side of Bigelow (with the class 3 finish near the small vertical snowpatch at far right shown):

Bigelow_Up_East_Side.jpg

The summit tower completion goes up next to the snowpatch just below and right of the summit then crosses through a notch into the gully just below and left of summit.

 

Also, a route can be climbed from Crater Creek. From Upper Crater Lake, climb up to the East Ridge just east of Pt. 8356 then scramble through a corrugation of gullies and ribs on the south side of the ridge to the summit tower (with rest of route as described above).

 

The East Summit of Raven Ridge is higher than the West

Even though the West Summit of Raven Ridge (aka Libby Mountain) is triangulated at 8580 and the East Summit (aka Corax Peak) is triangulated at 8572, I am fairly certain that the East Summit is higher than the West. I think there was a survey error. My guess is that the East Summit is about 10 feet higher than the West.

 

Triumph approach to notch camp is longer than 3 hours

You state 3 hours to get from the car to the notch camp (5,760+ ft) on Thornton's East Ridge. I don't know of anyone that has done that approach in three hours with a heavy pack. It took us 4 hours, 15 minutes and we're not slowpokes. You might consider revising to 4 hours (or 3-4 hours). You could possibly do it in three hours if you were not carrying overnight gear.

 

Custer from East Ridge

You state that "a traverse along the entire E ridge of Mt. Custer was made to Mt. Rahm by Dick Kegel [note spelling] and Rus(s) Kroeker in July 1979". Tom Sjolseth and I did the reverse of this in August 2003. Except for the routefinding up the east end of Custer, the traverse is no harder than class 3, though it is regularly exposed along the crest. The crest is often the best choice due to loose scree and talus on the south side. Further, it seems worthwhile to give a description of the route one takes to bypass the steep step on Custer's East Ridge 200 yards before the summit:

From the notch below the steep step, contour twenty feet downward on the south side of the ridge to a loose ledge. The ledge bears into the wall beyond and soon becomes a gully full of debris. Scramble nearly to its head to a small, unseen notch on the left. Cross through this notch to the next gully over, then climb 20 feet of class 4 in the gully to the top of the wall. From there the rest of the climb is class 3 scrambling to the top.

 

Here is a picture of the route:

945custer_ne_side_sm.jpg

 

Mt. Spickard NE Ridge Variation from Glacier

A variation for the Silver Glacier (North Glacier) Route is to complete the climb on the east side of the NE Ridge. Instead of climbing all the way to the top on steep snow and ice (possibly problematic in late season due to a schrund higher up), go through the obvious notch at the base of the NE Ridge. Scramble a succession of gullies and ribs either on the crest or closely east of it to the top (class 3/4).

 

Here is a picture of the schrund high up on the glacier (the notch exit for the variation is at far left at the snow swale):

945spickard_upper_ne_side_sm.jpg

 

Swamp Creek is not that bad

For a route to Tower Mountain and Golden Horn, you say "Swamp Creek is a bushwhack and not recommended." I personally wouldn't say that. Eric Hoffman and I approached the above two peaks from the highway via Swamp Creek and did it in a reasonable amount of time (approximately 3 hours to Snowy Lakes). It may be a push in terms of time requirements to go this way versus the Pacific Crest Trail from Rainy Pass/Porcupine Creek. The Swamp Creek approach is only four miles to the lower lake. The PCT approach is eleven.

 

For the Swamp Creek approach: the first mile or so from the road is through open forest with minimal bushwhacking. We started by going up the south side of the creek from the south end of the road clearing at Swamp Creek (this is the obvious wide segment of highway with the low-angle embankment on the east side of the road). The second mile contains the worst bushwhacking but it was never so bad so as to completely bog us down. The south side of the creek here (from the 4,700 to 5,000-ft level) is largely open, though a tad boggy terrain with interconnecting bands of trees one must hike through. The last mile to the PCT rendezvous we did on the north side of the creek. There was a minor avalanche-churned forest to negotiate but it can be avoided by staying closer to the creek. The key is to turn north at 5,100 feet and hike up the drainage for the lakes. This is the concise version:

A three-mile shortcut to the PCT where it crosses the basin below Lower Snowy Lake. Park at the wide spot in the road (c. 4,200 ft) about 3.5 miles from Rainy Pass [actual distance and elevation needs verifying]. Start by hiking through forest on the south side of the creek. The second mile is through boggy meadows and tree bands. Cross the creek at around 5,000 ft and at 5,100 ft bear northward up the lakes' drainage. Time: 3 hours to PCT.

 

Oakes Peak approach road is becoming overgrown

Your road description for the "Bacon Creek Road No. 3717" write-up should now mention that the branch road No. 3708 (East Fork)--the one that goes up and past Bacon Point--is in bad shape. The first mile or so is up a steep and stream-abraided road--especially at 0.7 miles (c. 880 ft). High clearance vehicles may be a must before too long. From there on, but especially after 2 miles, the road is becoming quite encroached upon by brush and small trees (alder?). I don't expect the road to be passable in that two miles in another couple of years. Lastly, at 3.2 miles (c. 2,080 ft), the road is washed out. It is undrivable through this washout. Ironically, the road is drivable beyond this washout for another 2 miles or so but the washout won't let you get onto it. Certainly it is amenable to mountain biking. However, after the October 2003 rainstorm, who knows the current state of this road. I know you cannot currently get to the junction to this road (1.5 miles from highway) due to washouts on Bacon Creek Road.

 

A picture of the road in its current state (May 2003):

945Oakes_Apprch_Road_II.jpg

 

Lastly...

Sauk Mountain T.H. is at ~4,500 ft (not 3,650 ft)

You mention that the trailhead for the Sauk Mountain Trail is at 3,650 ft. According to my Topo software (and verified by my memory of the terrain at that elevation), the trailhead is really at 4,500 ft.

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I just finished making a 7 page PDF detailing almost all the routes excluded from, misreported in, or climbed since CAG second ed came out - for the Canadian side of the border only (well, except for Bear Mountain... and the north side of Tomyhoi). It is attached. Pls have a look see and see if I missed anything or if there are any corrections. I will send the finished version to Fred.

321779-cagiii.pdf

Edited by Dru

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Whats with downgrading my route bee-och! I could have sworn I gave it at least 5.6+ or 5.7 grin.gif Do you know of any repeats?

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no cuz they cut the road off last year

 

yeah i downgraded your route without repeating it boxing_smiley.gifthe_finger.gif

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By the way, the author has bought a house in NE Seattle and is looking for a roommate in his 2-bedroom pad. He'll be gone a lot, but every once in a while you'll be able to ply him for the beta (good luck getting any useful information, but he's a great guy and definitely good for grins).

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Swamp Creek is not that bad

For a route to Tower Mountain and Golden Horn, you say "Swamp Creek is a bushwhack and not recommended." I personally wouldn't say that. Eric Hoffman and I approached the above two peaks from the highway via Swamp Creek and did it in a reasonable amount of time (approximately 3 hours to Snowy Lakes). It may be a push in terms of time requirements to go this way versus the Pacific Crest Trail from Rainy Pass/Porcupine Creek. The Swamp Creek approach is only four miles to the lower lake. The PCT approach is eleven.

 

For the Swamp Creek approach: the first mile or so from the road is through open forest with minimal bushwhacking. We started by going up the south side of the creek from the south end of the road clearing at Swamp Creek (this is the obvious wide segment of highway with the low-angle embankment on the east side of the road). The second mile contains the worst bushwhacking but it was never so bad so as to completely bog us down. The south side of the creek here (from the 4,700 to 5,000-ft level) is largely open, though a tad boggy terrain with interconnecting bands of trees one must hike through. The last mile to the PCT rendezvous we did on the north side of the creek. There was a minor avalanche-churned forest to negotiate but it can be avoided by staying closer to the creek. The key is to turn north at 5,100 feet and hike up the drainage for the lakes.

 

Hmm... I'd have to disagree with your correction. We went in there in April a few years back. From my TR: "Swamp Creek really really sucks. We encountered some of the densest forest I've seen in these parts, considering there was supposed to be snow on the ground covering the brush. I can't imagine anyone going in here in summer."

 

It took us 6 hours to get to Snowy Lakes from the highway (with winter overnight gear), and it sounds like we took a similar route. We followed the south side of the creek until the valley got less gorgey, then we were able to ski on the creekbed to make things quicker. From there on it was easy travel, but man those first few miles were bad. I think it would have been easier to climb over Mt Hardy.

We came out the north side of the creek, and I think it was a little better.

In any case, it was good compared to a typical west-side valley, but definitely the worst bushwhacking I've done in the washington pass area.

Edited by philfort

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Hard Mox (SE Twin Spire):

For the variation that goes up the right-most gully, it is confusing when you (FBeckey) say "climb the first 150 feet on the right." You do not make this comment in your previous edition. There is no right side for that first 150 feet. Really you just climb up the middle of the gully (or traverse into it from the left about 50 feet up) to the Class 4 chimney part. On the downclimb, you can avoid the chimney part by keeping left (south) of it to make use of another single-rope rappel point just below and left (skier's left) of the chimney part. It is not possible to climb up to this rappel point from below (vertical wall).

 

Depot Creek Trail

1. There is now a washout on Depot Creek Road about 0.8 miles past the normal parking area. This washout is an impasse to driving. It is about 300 yards before where a spur goes right across the creek. See this diagram.

2. A flood or rockslide in the 2003-2004 off-season has scoured away all the brush around Depot Creek in the last mile to Ouzel Lake. As such it is now no longer a problem to get from the waterfall to the lake. The brush is no longer a hindrance. Simply walk up the east side of the creek in the scoured part to the lake. There is one 100-ft section where the creek veers close to the eroded wall on the left. This part takes some care, otherwise there are no issues. Here is a picture of this:

945Depot_Cr_flood_damage.jpg

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The Challenger Arm Route, listed under Big Beaver Creek Trail in the Approaches section, is badly mangled in the 2nd Edition. (The 1st Edition was more accurate but still had some bad advice.) Here's my offering:

 

From Beaver Pass Shelter (or Beaver Pass Camp, 200 yards N along the trail) travel W through moderate underbrush. Cross the headwaters of the Big Beaver and ascend the slope above, aiming toward the left-hand timbered rib. Steep forest and moderate underbrush (higher) lead to a flat, open shoulder at timberline (5700 ft). From this shoulder it is best to continue up the crest rather than crossing the steep slopes on the S flank. Ascend the crest to 6600 ft. From here, two choices exist: 1) Descend S along a shoulder to about 6000 ft, then traverse benches W, gradually ascending to Eiley Lake (6500 ft). 2) Continue up the crest to Point 6984 ft, then descend SW to the adjacent basin and traverse to Eiley Lake (6500 ft). Pass Eiley Lake on the S (the crest to the N has an impassable notch) and continue SW to Wiley Lake. Pass Point 7374 either by traversing the small glacier on its N slope at 6800 ft or by ascending and passing the summit closely on the S. Either way, descend some distance to reach the E saddle of Challenger Glacier (6700 ft).

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fred sez he's not working all that hard on this one atythe moment so there's plenty of time to get those summer first ascents in the book.

 

you can search this site for user name beckey and send an email direct to fred using the email address found therein if you dont feel like posting helpful beta directly to this thread. in fact, fred never reads this thread - but his helpful minions do occasionally.

 

or just send beta to the email mattp posted above. hahaha.gif

Edited by Dru

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anyone know how fred's getting along with vol 3??? i am soooo excited to see it when it's done!!! i bet there's all sorts of cool stuff no one knew had been climbed in it!!!

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last i heard (couple wks ago) the revisions are "basically done" and its going to come out this summer

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