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genepires

first ascent (TR) Mt Dickerman ice climb, possible FA?

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This is my first attempt to post a TR with pictures so in advance please excuse my ineptitude with this. Will send them soon. No TR function for posting?

 

So two weeks ago, I took my two dogs for a walk up the Mt Dickerman trail on a rainy/snowy day. About two hours out at the 4500 foot level, there was a small creek which the dogs lapped up the cold water. Above was this patchy system of ice up the rambly cliffy section. The rest of the hike was pleasant in the snowy/rainy Washington kind of way. I knew though that the climb could form if it stayed cold and didn’t snow too much.

 

This last week was good for creating ice. Fairly cold and clear. Alex was up for a good day and I was also able to convince a new buddy, Robert on a temporary assignment from LA, to come along. We got a good early start for the hike in, climb and follow up with a hike to the top. Two hours walking on solid boot pack (must be hundreds of switchbacks) got us to the ice, right above the trail.

 

The ice is a cool little WI2 and about 75 meters, give or take a dozen meters. It can be split into 2 pitches at a convenient tree belay 30 meters up. The ice was thin with frequent hitting of rock but plenty of good medium and stubby screws were placed the whole way up. The angle of the ice compensates for the thin ice conditions.

I hauled a bunch of standard rock gear and pins but was unable to find any cracks to place anything. Two raps off trees get back to the ground.

 

Farther left, there is the possibility of some shorter ice climbs, some easier, some mixed. All involve wallowing through the deep stuff.

 

After our climb, we got back on the bootpack trail and continued another hour to the top. We carried our ice gear with us to confuse and/or frighten the more sane hikers. No one seemed to notice. For those who haven’t been on top dickerman, there are good views of n and e face big 4, n face sperry, n face vesper, w face sloan, glacier, pugh, whitechuck, e face Whitehorse, e face 3 finger and baker. Many possible winter objectives can be checked out from this vantage point. Note for dog lovers, lots of people with dogs on this trail last week.

 

I would not expect this climb to be exposed during a more normal season. It seems that it could easily be buried. But in early season, this could be a good climb to knock the rust off the swing and get a leg workout.

 

It seems that this climb must have been done before due to the access. Whoever may have done it never bothered to mention it to Jason and Alex for the ice guide. Maybe it is too easy to bother reporting? But whatever, it is ice, it is in Washington, it has a nice trail, and it is fun for hacks like me.

 

For those alpine suffering types, there is no visable ice on the west face of Sloan, east face of Whitehorse and Three fingers. BUT there is a very interesting ice formation on Big 4’s east face. Maybe three pitches of very steep terrain. It has a complicated approach but the reward is equally big for those willing to suffer. I will try to post some pictures later when I figure out how to zoom in on the photos I got.

 

Gear: standard ice gear, medium and stubby screws, maybe some KB’s, snowshoes needed if there is recently snowfall. Skis not useful.

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picture of the climb. please click attachment to see photo. I am a computer clutz.

439376-dogdayfallssmallerversion.jpg.2f6288c92d762b39dd2fb677b52167bd.jpg

Edited by genepires

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no ice on sloan? then i'm not that mad at Dan Alyward and Forest Murphy for scooping me and using my tire tracks this w/end.

 

Nice Job Gene!!!

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Last shot, some gumby leading higher up still. click attachment again.

 

Maybe someone who has the skills can put these photos in a regular way?

439383-DDFgeneleading.jpg.a42bb1379fb041a449ec4c3b5d991b1a.jpg

Edited by genepires

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Here are your pictures...

The climb:

439376-dogdayfallssmallerversion.jpg

 

Alex leading:

439379-DDFalexleading1.jpg

 

Alex leading some more:

439381-DDFalexleading2.jpg

 

Gene leading:

439383-DDFgeneleading.jpg

 

The Big Four ice climb:

439389-big4iceclimb.jpg

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I'm curious; on the USGS map the 4500' level seems to be up near the top of the steep section, where the trail starts to flatten out. Might you be off with your elevation estimate? 3500' perhaps? Oh, and nice work, BTW. thumbs_up.gif

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The route is up at the very top of the switchbacks, where the trail flattens out and enters the open upper meadows

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no ice on sloan? then i'm not that mad at Dan Alyward and Forest Murphy for scooping me and using my tire tracks this w/end.

 

Nice Job Gene!!!

 

What tire tracks? We got freshiez up that road!

 

BTW, a full report of our grass-whacking experience on Sloan is forthcoming.

 

Dan

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I was sooooo pissed when I heard you were on Sloan after I've been back there to check it out with no luck so many times. I hope you guys got up something, yet I also hope the route sucked.

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