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dawnd

Mount Clark (Olympics) Route?

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Anyone have knowledge about the route up Mount Clark?

 

A group of us was out there this weekend and using two different books for route descriptions, failed to find the route up. We were looking for the class 3 route but could have done low class 5. Smoot provides a description that we felt was completely inaccurate and Olympic Mountains: A Climbing Guide (Olympic Mountain Rescue) was tough to decipher especially when trying to match the two up.

 

Any first-hand info would be appreciated.

 

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It's been years since I've been up there. The first time I definitely got into 4th and low 5th class following the ridgeline more or less after climbing up from Surprise Basin. I didn't summit. My second attempt I did summit. I'm not positive I was on the described route, but I followed the path of least resistance on a series of ledges/ramps working my way up and climbers right after ascending an easy gully above Surprise Basin. I remember much of it being closer to class 2 than 3. I was somewhat disappointed, didn't seem like such a classic to me. There was a bit of steep snow in places, needed an axe. I was attempting to do route 1 in the guide book (not Smoot, the other one), I'm guessing that was your goal. Anyway that's what I remember. Again I may have not been on the route described in the book, but it sorta seemed to jive w/ the the description.

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Anyone have knowledge about the route up Mount Clark?

 

We were looking for the class 3 route but could have done low class 5. Smoot provides a description that we felt was completely inaccurate and Olympic Mountains: A Climbing Guide (Olympic Mountain Rescue) was tough to decipher especially when trying to match the two up.

 

had the same experience looking for that low 5th class route 5 or 6yrs ago (never found it..never summitted :) )

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Sometimes in the Olympics class 3 just means that there was no reasonable way to protect the climb either due to no cracks or crumbly rock. Or at least that's my theory.

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Yep...been there. 'bout half way up through Surprise Basin turn right and wind your way up to the ridge between Sundial and Clark, the farthest peak in the Northeast corner of Surprise Basin. Work toward the peak but drop over to the east side down a cracky slab. Work north again until you can 4th class it up toward the summit block...I blank out there but it wasnt' too tough. Definitely 3rd from there.

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Here's a TR from our trip a few years ago:

 

http://cascadeclimbers.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/ubb/showflat/Number/585370/Searchpage/1/Main/44015/Words/clark/Search/true/Re_TR_Surprise_Basin_Mt_Clark_#Post585370

 

we kind of picked a gully at random. I would say low 5th is accurate; you could probably simulclimb the whole thing. Be prepared for the epic walk-off though. We had to go down and then climb back up into Surprise Basin to get our packs which we'd left at the base of the the climb. I suggest talking them with you.

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I climbed the "Corkscrew Route" on Mount Clark on Monday, it was a really nice day in the mountains, and a fun scramble!

 

If anyone happens to find a single green CAMP aluminum crampon in Surprise Basin, I will happily buy you a 12-pack of your choice. I think someone will find it once the snow melts in early summer 2017.

 

Really fun place to explore! Crazy looking rocks around there!

 

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