Jump to content
  • Announcements

    • olyclimber

      WELCOME TO THE CASCADECLIMBERS.COM FORUMS   02/03/18

      We have upgraded to new forum software as of late last year, and it makes everything here so much better!  It is now much easier to do pretty much anything, including write Trip Reports, sell gear, schedule climbing related events, and more. There is a new reputation system that allows for positive contributors to be recognized,  it is possible to tag content with identifiers, drag and drop in images, and it is much easier to embed multimedia content from Youtube, Vimeo, and more.  In all, the site is much more user friendly, bug free, and feature rich!   Whether you're a new user or a grizzled cascadeclimbers.com veteran, we think you'll love the new forums. Enjoy!
Sign in to follow this  
Pencil_Pusher

Blood, sweat and tears.

Recommended Posts

Zero enthusiasm as I type this, but the impossible was done yesterday. Mt Olympus, car to car in 23 hours, 43 minutes.

Why? We're still asking ourselves that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

quote:

Originally posted by Pencil Pusher:

Mt Olympus, car to car in 23 hours, 43 minutes.

Why?

SICK! Good work guys. [big Drink]

 

[rockband]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All right! Glad that you got to do it PP! How did you like the walk back out, long and boring enough for you guys?

I think that I thought this damn trail would never end, but it is sweet to be up on top of Olympus, isn't it?

 

Anyways, congrats to you all!

 

Olivier

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i dont think they were atttempting to set speed records, nor do they come off sounding like they were...it seems to me that these guys se off to challenge themselves and see who they are and what they are made of.

 

14hours, 23hours.....or 52 days....

 

people climb for themselves.....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Olympus in a day! We came, we saw, we conked out! (Actually PP didn't conk out until the drive home.) No, we were not trying to set a speed record, just setting a challenging objective. I would not have beat on myself that hard just for the sake of bragging rights. During those last 9 miles I was asking myself why I did join this crazy scheme, since at that moment I was feeling the worst of it. But today I have no problem remembering why. Strange, how those unpleasant sensations of pain and exhaustion manage to fit themselves into an overall pleasant context, once the whole thing is over. Now I remember the moonlight on the peak, dawn breaking over us, and the elation of rounding that last rock shoulder to the summit, and the effort it took to get there and back lends those memories more gravity.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, there we were, standing in the parking lot at 6:20 felling fresh and ready to roll, Pencil Pusher, myself and Norman Clyde.. LET THE BEATING BEGIN!! The first 17 or so miles are fairly flat and we made good time, reaching the first ranger station (9 miles in) in about 2.5 hours. Skies were clear, temps were mild and the elk were bugling all around us. the next section of trail is also fairly flat until you get about 5 miles out from glacier meadows. At that point PP and NC left my sorry arse struggling to keep up (pretty much the story for the rest of the trip) those two set an awsome pace.

 

At glacier meadow we decided to take a break that break turned into a three hour shiver feast, while we lay down sans bivy gear and tried to get a few hours of shut eye. At 4:00 we NC decided he had shivered long enough and got us moving again (more uphill struggling insued for me while PP and NC cruised like it was flat ground) Once on the glacier we picked our way through sink holes and crevasses until we made it to the west side of the glacier and onto more solid snow pack. With one tricky moat/crevasse to deal with we were on our way to snow snow dome and the summit beyond.

 

At the summit choss pile PP lead up with NC and myself following, a rope wasn't really neccesary, but with the lenght of time we had been on the move the decision was made to use it. We spent a fine 10 minutes on the summit, took the obligatory photos and headed down.

 

Back at the trail we all agreed that to make the 24 hour time we would have to bust ass, that meant that PP and NC were going to run/walk and I was going to take up the rear (again) those two are animals, within five minutes I couldn't see them on the trail anymore and it wasn't until I drug back into the parking lot that I saw them again.

 

In terms of gear, we all had a little of everthing, but here is waht we ended up with: 50mm-9mil rope

one picket each

ice axe

instep crampons

harnes

camel back

Conditions were warm with a slight breeze higher up, the insteps worked well on flat ground, but on steeper and harder surface, foot placement was VERY important. Everything is very melted out so there weren't any real issues to deal with except for having to pick our way through the maze of the lower glacier.

 

It was a great trip, Norman Clyde and Pencil Pusher are couple of great guys who made excellent partners on a trip of this nature. So guy's since we couldn't do it last night, here's to you! [big Drink]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

quote:

Originally posted by Norman Clyde:

I would not have beat on myself that hard just for the sake of bragging rights.

Still, you did earn the merit badge. Olympus in a day puts you in select company. Sweaty, filthy, and somewhat insane company, but select nevertheless. If mountaineering is about personal challenge, then time trials are just as worthy a goal as anything, I guess. A race to break a speed record is quite another matter. Good job, Norman. Not bad for an old country doctor.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, Goat Boy. If I have any regrets about our fast and light approach, it's that we didn't allow the time to stop and admire all those monster trees. If you're going to be a Douglas Fir for 1000 years, the Hoh valley is a good place to be one.

I was doing the math last night on a 14 hour round trip. Since there are approximately 38 trail miles in there, not counting the climb itself, at 3 miles per hour the hike alone would take almost 14 hours. To give yourself a reasonable 7 hours to get up and down the mountain, you'd have to average 6 mph, or a 10 minute per mile pace, for 38 miles, not counting the climb itself. I'd like to shake the hand of the person who did that! I'd also bet that he/she had the luxury of snow cover on the lower Blue Glacier. We crossed on hard blue ice. Still, it was cool to explore the ablation zone of a big glacier in the fall. Not many crevasses, but there sure were some scary sinkholes where the surface melt had found its way down deep. I couldn't see the bottom of a single one-- not that I got too close to the edge to try. As PP said, if you fell in you'd need more than a rope, you'd need scuba gear.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ditto the sentiments of Norman Clyde and sketchfest. They're both cool guys to hike and climb with.

Now Sketchfest is being modest, he carried the rope the whole way up and wore boots for the whole trip. Clyde carried his boots and had a three liter camelback. My punk ass wore trail running shoes the whole trip and carried a one liter platypus.

Of going light, my diaper harness was a spectra double with a neutrino biner and a locking biner to clip in with. We took the left side of snow dome going up and me wearing the insteps on trail shoes and the hard snow made for some desperate ordeals. Not to mention the aluminum ice axe. Extremely light but not able to pound a picket in.

We all had Tikka headlamps.

Cytomax is expensive (cheaper if you buy it from the muscleman/nutrition shops) but does wonders... it's a drink mix. It helped me recover quite a bit prior to our three hour shiver fest. Also, bring enough food (fuel) for the trip. I brought seven candy bars, three Gu's, two bagels, lemon drops, and a pound of potato salad plus I made sure to tank up prior to our departure.

For pro on the choss pile, we brought two tri-cams and a stopper. No pro is necessary, you could just sling horns and flakes the whole way up.

One thing that confused us was the route up was supposed to be class 3, yet 15 feet beneath the rap slings we could find no easier way than straight up that crack. Were we on track... was there an easier way? Oh yeah, none of us brought helmets, they weren't really needed.

I tore out the two pages from the Olympic range climbing book for Olympus, this helped us out once we got on the glacier. For anyone else that does go and hasn't been there, we took the higher path from glacier meadows (there's a Y a little ways up from the meadows which didn't seem like meadows to me) and dropped down onto the glacier, per the instructions. What you want to aim for is the toe of the rock that is at the left side of snow dome, any further left and you'll be going up some icefall and crevasse hell. That's around 5600 feet and is a good visual reference as you descend onto the glacier. From there you can either scramble over rock on a rising rightward traverse (or on snow near rock) to the rock's highest point (it ends on a gentle snow shoulder). Go up about 200 meters and then begin a rising leftward traverse till you top out on snow dome. I'm writing this because we had no boot track to follow from the trail to snow dome and we took the left hand side of snow dome to ascend which really sucked at that time of year (with our wonderful four point crampons).

If you stay on the standard track, insteps should suffice fine.

Of the 14+hours roundtrip that Blight quoted, it took us 6.5 hours to get to Glacier Meadows with a couple of detours and a long stop at the ranger station. Coming back, it took a little over 4 hours to get to the car from the meadows. I bet a really fit person could hit the meadows in 5-5.25 hours and do the exit in 3-3.5 hours which leaves 5-6.5 hours for the round trip ascent from the meadows which is very feasible. That person (gals, feel free to show the boys a lesson or two) would have to be lean and mean and that's not me.

Many thanks to Olivier and Mike for showing us this could be done in that 24 hour time frame. I really didn't know if I was going to make it until I got to mile marker 2.3. The views of the mountains that day were great, both in sunlight and moonlight. [big Drink]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

quote:

Originally posted by Pencil Pusher:

[QB]One thing that confused us was the route up was supposed to be class 3, yet 15 feet beneath the rap slings we could find no easier way than straight up that crack. Were we on track... was there an easier way? QB]

Now I'm confused, unless the rap point has been moved. Seems to me the summit block involves jumping the moat high to get on the NE face, traversing to the south and scrambling the crumbly ridgeline (keeping right) to the top. It's been quite a while, but that's my recollection.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well we did the moat crossing high, rather awkward vertical moat exposure. We then traversed all the way to the left. The blue rap slings were at the left (south?) side of the summit ridge. Should we have gone up the knife ridge instead?

So let me go back a bit. We went from Snow Dome to the #1 route in the Olympic Climbing Guide which brings you around to the backside of the five fingers. The snow ends at a crumbly rock ridge which we crossed then traversed to the right towards the notch below the summit peak. The notch brought us onto some steep snow where the boot track brought us to a high moat crossing. We followed what appeared to be a path along the left as described above. The crack we ascended beneath the rap slings were but a few moves of 5.4ish. Then up to the ridge and the traverse to the summit marker.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well we did the moat crossing high, rather awkward vertical moat exposure. We then traversed all the way to the left. The blue rap slings were at the left (south?) side of the summit ridge. Should we have gone up the knife ridge instead?

So let me go back a bit. We went from Snow Dome to the #1 route in the Olympic Climbing Guide which brings you around to the backside of the five fingers. The snow ends at a crumbly rock ridge which we crossed then traversed to the right towards the notch below the summit peak. The notch brought us onto some steep snow where the boot track brought us to a high moat crossing. We followed what appeared to be a path along the left as described above. The crack we ascended beneath the rap slings were but a few moves of 5.4ish. Then up to the ridge and the traverse to the summit marker.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Congrats guys. Swissman and I wished you could have joined us earlier this summer PP. Who wants to do my variation? Up the Hoh and down and out the other side.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

PP, yes, I am talking about that knife edge. I don't recall it being too difficult--we simply turned the corner and scrambled straight up. I recall being able to look down on the east face. Not sure if that is the correct route, however. Funny thing about a lot of Olympic summit blocks--there usually is a hidden key to the summit that's pretty easy in class. The trick is finding it. BTW, Five Fingers makes an excellent bivy site, wouldn't you say?

 

I've seen some of your trip photos. Looked like an great trip, perfect conditions. Nice outfit! [big Grin]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

quote:

Originally posted by mikebell:

Congrats guys. Swissman and I wished you could have joined us earlier this summer PP. Who wants to do my variation? Up the Hoh and down and out the other side.

Are you talking about going up the Hoh Glacier, or doing the Hoh trail to Glacier Meadows and heading toward Low Divide? The Olympus traverse is spectacular. Routefinding through the Humes Glacier/Queets Basin area is especially fun if the weather holds. Look for plane wreckage on the terminal morraine. There are a few bivy sites here, too. Highly recommend camping high in Queets Basin, below Dodwell-Rixon. This is one of the most beautiful spots in the park, and seldom visited.

 

I'd like to do this again, exiting via the queets river (we did the whole Bailey Range last time). Next year for me, though. I can't get back to Washington soon enough. Another cool option would be to exit via the south fork (Valhallas). Anyone done that?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm going to look at the map to see where these other traverses start and finish. If the Blue Glacier is remote, then Dodwell-Rixon pass and the Queets basin must be even more so. Mikebell, do you mean crossing Glacier Pass and heading out the Queets or Elwha? Either way it's got to be 50 miles or so.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this  

×