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klenke

Chossiest High Peaks in Washington?

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Here's my list of chossiest "Top 100" peaks in Washington that I've done that warrant mentioning(not necessarily in ranking order of looseness). Some of these peaks don't refer to the bulk of the mountain itself but to the terrain to access it, etc. Often, the easiest way up a high peak is via its loosest gully. Hence, a lot of high peak climbing requiring the least-technical terrain to go up leads one up the crappiest way.

 

1. Blackcap Mountain (Pasayten), which is not as steep as Boston Peak but just as loose

2. Monument Peak (Pasayten), particularly accessing it

3. Mt. Carru (Pasayten)

4. Boston Peak (Cascade Pass), I didn't think East Face was that bad and hence its bad reputation overblown

5. Saska Peak (Entiat), East and SE faces to get over to Emerald Peak

6. Fortress Mountain (Chiwawa Mountains), East side

7. Silver Star Mountain, particularly Burgundy Col area

 

Any other peaks to add, people? Doesn't necessarily have to be a Top 100 peak

 

[ 07-12-2002, 03:05 PM: Message edited by: klenke ]

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Spider would seem to be a contender. If you're counting approaches, the north side of SE Peak Bonanza is one, its one of those talus fields where everything moves, and a report on this website stated that the Soviet Route right above this field was choss city. North Face of Booker.

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Seems volcanoes are chossy by their very nature. So, could put all four of them (five incl. St. Helens) on the list too. I haven't done Glacier Peak yet but I hear it's the worst of them all.

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Little Tahoma. Chossiest POS I've ever climbed.

 

Boston ranks right up there though (and come to think of it, Azurite was bad too).

 

[ 07-12-2002, 04:23 PM: Message edited by: MountainMan ]

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Main Peak of Bonanza.

 

Unicorn Peak in the Tatoosh deserves a Dinnerplate Award.

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Oh yeah, almost forgot about Ragged Ridge. McShitty (aka Mesahchie) was a terribly chossy POS--especially in the gully that leads down from the ice climb col.

 

I remember Observation Rock on the north side of Mt. Rainier being really loose. But that was just loose pumice rock, normal stuff for a volcano.

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What? I thought Unicorn was pretty solid, maybe I did a different route. In fact all of the Tatoosh peaks I've played on have been decent rock.

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There is a small pinnacle just east of the east peak of Mount Daniel, and I think it has a name. It is a major pile of shit. I tried to solo up to the top once. About 6 feet of 2nd or 3rd class scrambling below the summit I stopped. It appeared possible that if I stood atop the thing the whole summit could possibley collapse. If I had a rope or anchor of some sort I would have summited the heap o shit. I wont be back.

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I think the N Side of Unicorn looks solid; I was talking about the grim southern route.

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Yes, Gordon, you've got the right P. Klenke. I will confirm what you say about the rappelling off of Boston. The second rappel anchor was pretty iffy. I almost got the rope stuck pulling it down afterward (and I pulled some loose rocks down on me).

 

MountainMan: did you happen to see a Volkswaggen Bug-sized rock on the snowfield below the east side? Well, the climbing was so loose that I knocked that big-friggin-rock (B.F.R.) onto the snow on the way up. Yes, sir, the East side of Fortress is pretty crappy. I was off route on the way up but came down a "better" way. Send me an email at klenke@attbi.com, and I'll send you a couple of annotated images of Fortress Mountain's east side. Perhaps they'll show you something you missed (or didn't miss).

 

- - - Paul

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I did a route on the NE Face of Fortress that wasn't half bad, a number of pitches of decent rock down low on a rock band with long steepening snow slope above, topping out on the E Ridge (the ridge that connects to Chiwawa. Snow was deep glop on the other side of the ridge, so we went back down for some stellar trundling (I know, different thread) off the moraine.

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I found Crooked Thumb in the Pickets to be a tottering pile of choss. I have heard other bad things about the Pickets in general, but dont know first-hand. I found Challenger to be OK, but not condidence inspiring really.

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quote:

Originally posted by klenke:

Yes, Gordon, you've got the right P. Klenke.

- - - Paul

Cool, how's it going? I can't seem to PM you, so drop me a line sometime.

 

Did you hear about my ride this winter? Since then, I haven't had much opportunity to check out Chosse-piles this season.

 

later,

G

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I haven't been up, but, SE Twin Spire (Hard Mox) is probably the most notorious Washington peak that I know.

 

Lixvar's article on the Bulgar's pursuit of the top 100 gives more details. Beckey is not particularly encouraging either.

 

http://boealps.org/echo/apr99.html#chapt1

 

"Old Desolate" (MRNP) was probably the largest gravel heap I've ever wallowed up. Nothing bigger than a softball.

 

-t

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quote:

Originally posted by klenke:

4. Boston Peak (Cascade Pass), I didn't think East Face was that bad and hence its bad reputation overblown


Are you P Klenke?

Anyway, I agree the way up the E Face of Boston is loose, but not too bad.

 

The scarry part was rapelling off the top. rock falling on your partner below or chopping the rope were highly possible outcomes. I don't recall the anchor block being all that comforting either.

 

G

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i actually thought the rock was ok on mesachie, if you stay right on the ridge crest. the "icefall" gully was full o'snow when we did it, which helps.

 

oh yeah, the rock on spickard is so bad that i'm surprised the peak doesn't fall down when the wind blows.

 

[ 07-18-2002, 12:26 PM: Message edited by: forrest_m ]

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Hey 666,

 

That is the citidal. My bro almost got peeled off that sucker by some rocks (no rope) while downclimbing.

 

I'll third Little T...jason...

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Hey Klenke,

I climbed Fortress Tuesday and Wednesday and noticed your entry in the summit register. Something about loose and airy, exposed 3rd class. I'll echo that as well ... we ascended the SW ridge and descended a [steep] 4th class gulley on the East Face. It was UGLY. Very loose, and very steep. Is there a better way down that thing? We descended about 250m Southeast from the summit along the SE ridge and stayed to the right of a steep, prominent E. facing ridge. I tried to follow Beckey's beta, but didn't see what the heck he was talking about, so I took the MountainMan 2002 variation instead. Luckily it worked out OK.

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The U notch that leads from Glacier basin to the Pride glacier on Kyes peak is with out exception the chossiest piece of non volvanic real estate in the cascades. It's the hardest 3rd class loose rock pitch I've climbed.

 

Paul, I thought Blackcap was the classiest route of all the the not to classy Pasayten Peak's routes. I didn't think the rock was too bad. Can't argue with your assessment of Monument though, you have to pay attention to what you're grabbing on to there.

 

For techinical pitches, the second pitch on the SW rib of Tower mountain (one of Wotan's 1st ascents I think) was pretty loose 5.5/5.6. The rest of the route was great fun though.

 

I have to say, I kind of like what chossy rock adds to a climb.

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