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[TR] Mount Buckner - Southwest Route loop 10/27/20

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Trip: Mount Buckner - Southwest Route loop


Date: 10/27/2008


Trip Report:

A sunny day on Monday meant it was time for my Third Annual October Bad Moustache / Mount Buckner Loop Climb Extravaganza. The Cascade River Road is gated for the season at Mile 20, so I pushed a bike 3 miles up the road to the trailhead...because I'm not in good enough shape to ride it that far.


Snow patches are a regular occurance on the last few switchbacks below the pass, and snow is continuous on the trail from the final switchback to the pass, maybe a foot deep. I dropped into Pelton Basin, down the switchbacks below Doubtful Lake Basin, past beautiful fall colors along the trail and into Horseshoe Basin.


Here's sunrise from Horseshoe Basin.




More sunrise:




One more...Sahale and Boston Peaks in the morning glow:




And now for a fun game you can play, called Find The Ptarmigan:




Once again I failed to locate the cable for the route to the upper basin, but I came closer than ever this time as I found the top of the cable. Maybe next time. The snow crusty at first, but it was good cramponing snow for the last 2000' of the climb.


Here's a photo taken about 50' below the summit, looking toward Stehekin:




And now for the Bad Moustache Summit Shot, in case you thought I was kidding:




I love how Forbidden, Eldorado, and Baker stack up from Buckner's summit. Taking in these views never gets old...




Rainier above the North Cascades (Spire Point on the left)




And the crevasses of the Boston Glacier far below




Sat on top for 45 minutes enjoying the perfect weather and perfect views. I had decided to do the loop by heading traversing above Horseshoe Basin and climbing up to the camp area below the Sahale Glacier. The snow had softened considerably by the time I left the top, and it was knee-deep postholing for much of the traverse to the gully that takes one up to the ridge leading to the camp area.


Came across some old rusty mining detritus below Ripsaw Ridge:




And a shadow wave from the little saddle above the gully, where I was wading in thigh-deep snow for much of the climb:




A good look back at Buckner while climbing the rocky ridge underneath Sahale:




Took a break at the Sahale camp area and met a solo climber coming down from a one-day ascent:




Here's the Sahale Arm. About 90 percent of the trail was buried in snow.




The light was so nice in Boston Basin that I had to stop several times to take photos. Here's Eldorado and Torment:




And Torment and Forbidden above Boston Basin:




And a last look at Sahale before dropping back down to Cascade Pass:




And one more shot of Eldorado in the fading sunset light:




Join me next October for another installment of Bad Moustache Adventures.



Approach Notes:

Approach your mailbox...


Gear Notes:

And DROP OFF YOUR BALLOT! Don't forget to vote, unless you are planning on voting Republican, in which case please forget to vote.



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Great pictures. I've been toying with the idea of doing Buckner in a day. What's the "cable" you're referring to?

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sweet trip. your pic of booker is super cool.

(nice little ribbon of ice there below the ne face of forbidden!)

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timmy_t it was nice meet @ Sahale camp on Monday. What incredible fall day.

I hope you don't mind me posting some pictures on your TR that I took up there on Monday.




Big scenery = big pictures




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