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Z-Man

[TR] Chair Peak - Northeast Buttress 1/14/2007

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Trip: Chair Peak - Northeast Buttress

 

Date: 1/14/2007

 

Trip Report:

Contemplated my healing ankle on Friday and cancelled the plans for a full weekend of ice climbing. BTW, how'd the trip go JRCO? We were one of three parties on the NEB Sunday, and we all agreed that the route was great fun.

 

chair_52.jpg

 

Promising start to the day,

 

261224.JPG

 

and it just got better and better.

 

261227.JPG

 

261230.JPG

 

Lots of variations possible all across the East Face and NE Buttress. But if you want any pro for the steep step on this side you're best off aiming for the ice step at 2/3 height on the buttress. We followed the soloist up loose snow, thin ice, rock, and eventually 80-90 degree thunker neve on the first pitch. This may be the most fun pitch I have ever climbed.

 

Topping out first pitch

 

Chair_27-1.jpg

 

Starting second pitch

 

261232.JPG

 

Simuling up to ice step, the snow here had a thick crust that was easily broken past into loose snow. Not great, but never sketchy.

 

261234.JPG

 

Summit.

 

261235.JPG

 

Turkey sandwich.

 

261237.JPG

 

The Snoqualmie Pass cloud vortex was in full effect on the way down.

 

261239.JPG

 

Rather than screw around with finding good anchors for belays between the trees at the top of the first pitch and the trees at the top of the route, in the conditions we experienced we would have been much better served to just simul-climb the whole stretch. Fun nonetheless.

 

Gear Notes:

Rope, tools, screws, pins, crampons, nuts, pickets, slings. All the pro got used about once and only once. Lots of stuff for 3 pitches, but only way to marginally protect it.

 

Approach Notes:

South side boot track up valley is packed hard. Ski and slowshoe tracks everywhere above Source Lake, follow the one that goes where you want to go.

Edited by Z-Man

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Nice TR and pics Z-man. That's a fun route. I remember the first pitch being about 65 degrees with one bulge to overcome.

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Regardless of how steep it was, it was a good break from work!

Thanks for the TR and pics.

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First pitch as a whole not too steep, 45-degree snow wallowing at top and bottom. There was a good fifty foot section though that was near vertical with several bumps that pushed it to vertical. Then again maybe I just suck. Or maybe you and I didn't climb the exact same line in the exact same conditions?

 

But if I had to compare it to when I climbed this,

 

259503.jpg

 

which was overhanging

 

or this,

 

zqzbergie.jpg

 

which was far from it I think I'd have to stick with my original estimate.

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There are definitely a couple of different ways to climb the 'first pitch' of this route. Looks like you guys took the farthest left option. I've never gone that way, but maybe that is the source of the disagreement regarding steepness...?

 

Anybody take the right-angling gully on the first pitch this past weekend, of the many parties that were there? That is the way I've done it (twice) and I think is how it is described in the book. More rock pro options that way.

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Are you talking overnight trip, or a place to sleep in the parking lot? If looking for a place in the parking lot, the mid lot at ski acres by the bonanaza chair seems pretty discrete. You will most likely get hassled at the upper alpental lot, and you have to pay ridiculous fees to park in the RV lots.

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261230.JPG

 

That lower section is looking way fatter than last year, missed out this weekend I guess :(

 

Here's a good comparison from last year (AlpinistAndrew's photo) taken a few weeks later in the year than now:

 

3134DSCF0018.JPG

 

Go and get it :tup: :tup:

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Heh I remember that cornice, going left in that picture was not a good choice.

Edited by sir_vent

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