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[TR] Mt. Ruth/Icy Peak Traverse 8/16/08 - 8/17/08

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Trip: Mt. Ruth/Icy Peak Traverse - Date: 8/16/2008 - 8/17/2008

 

Trip Report:

Full trip report with photos at AlpineTarn.com.

 

Some pics not available on my website:

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Our team met at the Ash Way P&R at 6:00 AM. This was going to be round two on Ruth and Icy. Our trip from two weeks earlier ended at the Glacier Ranger Station under rainy skies. This time we were blessed with a pretty good forecast. The weatherman had even removed the chance of thunderstorms on Sunday overnight while we slept and anticipated the climb.

 

We started up the Hannegan Pass Trailhead at about 9:30 am. After about 5o minutes and two miles of distance we stopped to regroup. It was really hot and humid. Priscilla, who had been battling a cold, was having some problems. We split up some of her gear with the hope that higher ground would bring cooler temps and some releif for Priscilla. Unfortunately, that was just not to be. After another half hour we stopped again. This time Priscilla had come to the realization that the climb was just not in the cards for her this weekend. Lokesh selflessly agreed to give up his own chance at the climb to descend with Priscilla and return home. We had a quick chat about group gear, sorted loads, bid Lokesh and Priscilla farewell and continued on our way.

 

We set off following the trail towards Hannegan Pass. We quickly gained ground as the trail switched back and forth through beautiful alpine meadows full of lush flowers and views of Mt. Ruth. We made Hannegan Pass in good time.

 

After a nice break at Hannegan Pass we headed over to the nearby tarn and filled up our water bottles. While we were there, unbeknownst to me, Mark and Yet passed on by. Without knowing it was Mark and Yet, I watched as two people made their way up the steep drainage that is the "trail" above Hannegan Pass. As we made our way to the top ourselves, taking great care not to knock rocks onto one another below, I began to realize just who it was that I had been watching. We couldn't beleive that we had bumped into each other! We took some pictures, discussed plans, and set off in seperate groups bound for Ruth's summit.

 

When we reached the base of the Ruth Glacier, we roped up and had a snack. Mark and Yet reached the base of the glacier shortly there after. As our two teams started up, I watched as Mark went for the summit. I managed to grab of few good pictures of him on his way.

 

We stepped off on the snow and reached the rocky summit as Mark was leaving. Beautiful views 360 degrees views were laid out infront of us. We could see Shuksan, the Picket Range, Glacier Peak, and of course the next day's objective, Icy Peak.

 

After spending about thirty minutes on the summit of Ruth, we decided that we had better get moving and get into camp. We dropped down the Ruth Glacier towards a notch in the ridge and contoured onto Ruth's shoulder. Here we found a large campsite so close to Shuksan that it looked like we could touch it as we ate our dinner and watched the sun set.

 

We departed camp at 5:15 a.m. under party cloudy skies illuminated by a full moon hung in the sky next to Mt. Shuksan. The light provided by the moon was just enough to make the descent out of camp only partially sketchy. I was really glad that I had taken the time the night before to find the trail to the left of the death gulley that so many parties are rumored to take. Careful downclimbing for about 300' led to an easy descent onto the ridge followed by some more relatively minor downclimbing, snow-slogging, and rock-hopping before making our way onto the Icy Glacier.

 

By 8:00 a.m. we were standing at the top of the Icy Glacier. We unroped and ascended talus on the other side of the ridge to the base of a 4th class scrable that trully felt 5'ish. Andre went up and set up a fixed line for the rest of the team to ascend. Before long we were all on the summit taking in the views, pleased that we had escaped the thunder storms that had threatened us from afar as we left camp.

 

By 11:00 a.m., after rappelling and descending the talus, we were back on the Icy Glacier headed for camp. At camp by 2:00, we took our time to rehydrate and eat before packing up. Leaving camp at 3:15, we were back at the cars by 7:30 p.m.

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Good stuff. We did the Ruth Icy Traverse this weekend. There's some great view up there, that's fer sure.

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Nice photos. I am trying to round up a crew to do this with me this weekend. Any takers?

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Thanks for the kind words. I think that it's a route that doesn't get done all that frequently (the whole traverse to Icy that is). Had my partner not suggested it, I probably wouldn't have even considered it. I'm sure glad she did - it's a very enjoyable route!

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climbed ruth back about 2years ago stayed 2 1/2days camped at the summit solo wow what a trip its been.great weather woke up in the middle of the night to a clear sky full of shooting stars and great

sun sets and sun rises

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Good stuff. We did the Ruth Icy Traverse this weekend. There's some great view up there, that's fer sure.

 

I've been contemplating attempting this trip in one day, nonstop. How is the traverse to Icy?

 

How are crevasses on the Ruth Glacier?

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It would probably be doable in a day but it would be long for sure. 20 miles RT 5,500' of gain. A lot of people don't rope up on the Ruth Glacier, but I'm not one of them. There's a big bergschrund on the route - that's about it. The Ruth Glacier gets some decent crevasses but they are well to the right of the route.

 

The traverse to Icy is a lot of downclimbing on somewhat loose rock (mild). Once one bottoms out (700 ft or so) it's a bit of traversing boulders and then a 700'+/- climb up a glacier (crevasses) at a really low-moderate angle.

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I've been contemplating attempting this trip in one day, nonstop. How is the traverse to Icy?

 

How are crevasses on the Ruth Glacier?

 

Just did the Ruth-Icy traverse. Total hiking time car to car was ~ 13 hours which we did over two days with a bivi on top of Ruth. Packing light one could do this in a reasonable day, but the sunrise over Baker, Shuksan, the Pickets should not be missed.

 

We did not rope up for either the Ruth or Icy glaciers.

Edited by danielpatricksmith

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Yeah, doable in a day, but day's are getting short, and that hike out from the pass is the longest four miles on the planet.

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that hike out from the pass is the longest four miles on the planet.

So it wasn't just me...

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