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David_Parker

2 nights in Bailey Range?

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Anyone want to suggest most bang for the buck solo trip in Bailey Range starting Friday eve and ending Sunday afternoon? I will go light and fast, but don't want anything "rediculouslookatmeandwhatididcartocarspeedevent". Little or no 5th class over 5.5 please. Happy to have a tag along too if so inclined.

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I just returned two days ago from doing the whole Bailey Range north to south, and can't imagine anyone doing it over just two nights! shocked.gif Once crossing The Catwalk, the route turns to shit that traverses multiple loose dirt & scree gullies with enough room for at least half of your foot width above a 2000' vertical drop for about the next 5 miles or so before it simmers down to just semi-crappy at 11-Bull Basin.

 

No kidding, a 5 - 7 mile day on the Baileys is about all anyone would want to do and I usually pride myself on being an U.L. hiker that could "normally" do a 18 - 22 mile day on trails. We had one very intense (and HOT!) day that went ~9 miles from Mt. Pulitzer, down the (snowless) Elwha snowfinger and ended up at Happy Hollow Shelter on the Elwha trail at 10:30PM. I thought I was gonna die!

 

Good luck and please remember me in your will! pitty.gif

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Do you have any other beta to share about the Bailey Range? Some friends and I are heading out there soon. Was there need for crampons/ice axe on the route? Anything we should look out for?

 

Thanks!

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A barely 2-day trip involving the Bailey Range is, in my opinion, something not worth trying. A person would have to start the return before really getting into the area. More days are needed for the Bailey Range proper. If a marathon taste of the area is the goal, a fast trip in to climb Mt. Carrie (starting at the Soleduck trailhead) might suffice. An even more ordeal-type-of-endeavor might be a jaunt up Long Ridge trail up to Dodger Point and out over Ludden Peak to Mount Ferry. And then back. That would require good running shoes.

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Actually I'm in the process of writing my trip report as we speak. It's kinda long and I'm not sure it's appropriate for a non-climbing report to be posted here, so I'll probably post it on the W.T.A. site in a few days when completed.

 

But, to quickly answer your questions....

 

The route between Mt. Carrie and 11-Bull Basin traverses four dirt/scree gullies with very loose, narrow and trecherous footing in most places. It's only about 2 miles but took us 4 hours due to having to concentrate on CAREFULLY placing each footstep so as not to fall to your death down the slope!

 

YES!!! Crampons and ice axe were both needed in several locations. Basically about any snow (that wasn't level) we ran across from the south side of Mt. Pulitzer all the way south to Bear Pass was rock hard and very icy! We were damn glad to have the crampons and axes even though they were dead weight before and after those sections.

 

The only snow in the Elwha snowfinger was found to be at the snowdome which required a steep dirt scramble up the north side of the gully, pick your way gingerly across the crevassed top, (staying to the north side cause the ice was thicker underneath you) and then slide back down the dirt to the gully on the far side.

 

And, oh yeah....The Catwalk. There are several <possible> routes across it with only one being the correct one. If you find your ass hanging over empty space with the valley thousands of feet under you, you are probably on the wrong route! We found that following all the goat hair that is stuck on the bushes was the correct route! (Really!)

 

Hmmmm....what else. No water between Boston Charlie's Camp and 11-Bull Basin, and no water from just south of Mt. Pulitzer and Dodwell-Rixon Pass. The skeeters will surely carry you away and butcher you if it weren't for the weight of your pack to hold you down, so bring plenty of Deet! The wildflower show is outrageous right now. It was hotter than hell during the day and we ran out of sunscreen. (Once during a break near Bear Pass my little el-cheapo thermometer read 104 degrees and at that instant my Bic lighter burst in my pack!!!)

 

Ask more specific questions if you have them, I'll try to answer.

 

HD

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look forward to your report at WTA...am planning on the traverse in a couple of weeks. I do hope that it was more enjoyable than you let on here!

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