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[TR] ONP - Valhallas-Athena-Olympus 7/6/2008


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Trip: ONP - Valhallas-Athena-Olympus


Date: 7/6/2008


Trip Report:

So, I had 5 days to burn, and my friend Luke and I decided to climb Olympus via the Valhallas traverse (via the route in the oly climbers guide). We left the south fork trailhead at 2pm (due to getting a bit misdirected on the drive). We hiked the trail and started the shwack. I do believe the worst part of the entire shwack was the first 100-200 yards or so. After that, we followed game trails and the riverbed and I only lost a pint of blood or so. Camped about 4-5 miles in (about 1/2 way to Valkyrie cr.).


Day2: Finished the shwack to Valkyrie cr, and decided to differ from the guide. We hiked the boulders to the right of the creek, and then crossed the creek below a cliff and climbed next to a landslide and steep forest to the left of the creek, traversing, climbing and shwacking through some rough terrain. At about 3500 ft, we traversed out of the forest onto the snowfield that covered the creek, and camped just below the baldur-frigga col.


Day3: Climbed into the Valkyries and traversed at about 5200' the entire way along the ridge. Saw several bears and some goats. Views of Olympus and Mt. Tom were amazing. Differed from the guidebook again, and instead of descending to the Hubert glacier terminus, we climbed up, and gained some snowfields further up the side of Athena. Traversed over to a notch and did a short 3rd class pitch and camped just below the ridge of the Hoh glacier at about 7k. One of the best campsites I've ever had.


Black bear checking us out.


The upper Hubert Glacier.


Day4: Summited Athena (quick scramble), and walked over and crossed the ridge below middle peak (had to rap into the moat and climb out). Then walked over and joined the regular crystal pass Olympus route and summited around 2pm. Conditions were great. Descended to Elk Lake campsite.

Day5: Out the Hoh trail and much thanks to Dan for the ride over to our car.

The wildlife, remoteness, perfect weather, routefinding, new scenery every day, a great partner, some luck, great snow levels, etc made this trip better each day. I've had trips where everything went totally wrong, but this was the dream trip. My feet and body are toasted now, but what a great time, and an awesome way to summit Olympus.


Olympus from the South Side, yo.


Gear Notes:

30m rope, ice axe, crampons, snow pro


Approach Notes:

The 9 mile shwack in wasn't that bad. The shwack up valkyrie creek to the snowfield was.

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