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Tom_Sjolseth

[TR] Dragontail Peak - Route du Jour - Triple Couloirs 3/23/2010

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Trip: Dragontail Peak - Route du Jour - Triple Couloirs

 

Date: 3/23/2010

 

Trip Report:

This forum seems to be lacking in TC reports, so here's mine from yesterday:

 

Erin B and I had a great time today on Dragontail Peak.

 

We left the Bridge Creek Campground at 3:15AM. We managed to get a few hours of sleep after our drive from Seattle late the previous evening, but we were still groggy.

 

We made quick work of the road/lake approach and arrived at Colchuck Lake in a little under 3 hours (7 miles, 3700' gain). The bootpack was frozen solid, and if anything we could have cramponed the approach. From the N end of the lake, we walked across to the S and took a long break on the other side. After eating, drinking, donning our climbing gear, and admiring the views, we took off towards the base of the route in calf-deep snow.

 

Although several parties had climbed the route on Saturday, their tracks had all but disappeared, forcing us to break our own trail. This took a bit longer than anticipated, and we didn't wind up getting to the base of the route until about 8AM. From here, we broke trail up the first couloir and walked past the runnels. I was tempted to give the runnels a go, but I didn't want to scare Erin off on only our second trip out, so I opted to go for the rappel into the upper runnels.

 

One short section of verglas here led up and out of the runnels. From here, we again broke trail up the second couloir, a painfully slow process.

 

The transition from second to third couloirs was dry. There looked to be two feasible ways through, and we chose the direct route drytooling on rock and turf.

 

After breaking trail up the third couloir, our calves were singing to us. We were glad when we finally topped out and saw the summit a short distance above us.

 

We reached the summit a little after noon. We stayed up there for about an hour, before heading down to Asgard Pass. The slopes of Asgard Pass were very firm and wind-scoured, dashing any hopes of ours to glissade it. The slopes softened up near the bottom, and I was able to glissade the lower 600' or so, which was a welcome relief.

 

The road walk seemed to go on forever, and the snow was soft from the afternoon sun. We were glad we lugged our snowshoes, else we'd be postholing pretty deep. Back to the car at 4:20PM.

 

Stats:

 

18 miles

7,000' gain

13:05 RT (From Bridge Creek CG)

 

 

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A view of the N Face of Dragontail Peak as seen on a previous attempt. Photo taken April 20, 2008.

 

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Erin starting up the first couloir.

 

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Cashmere Mountain from low on the route.

 

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Climbing in the first couloir.

 

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Looking up at the dry runnels.

 

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More climbing.

 

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The view up from the rappel station.

 

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The view down from the rappel station.

 

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Erin climbing thin ice over slab at the top of the runnels.

 

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Colchuck Lake as the backdrop.

 

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Low in the third couloir.

 

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Neat gendarme on route.

 

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Looking down from the bottom of the third couloir.

 

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E Dragontail from the summit.

 

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Cannon and Temple Ridge in the background.

 

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Looking down from the top of the third couloir.

 

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View to Pandora's Box from the summit.

 

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Erin making the final steps to the summit of Dragontail Peak.

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nice! you guys just cruised it.

how long of a rap is it? could you do it with just 1 50m rope? also, looks like you guys didn't really rope up for anything. did you pull out the rope for anything other than the rap?

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Nice work. That was me you glissaded past while I skinned toward the pass. Thanks for leaving those rap anchors at the N face entry, I snowboarded down the Option #3 route finding excellent steep skiing conditions. Did you guys pick up a BCA probe 240cm in an orange case about 1.5 miles from the gate? I had stashed a shovel and probe there about 50ft. from the road behind a rock, and under a couple cabeza sized rocks. When I came back the rocks were upturned, and the probe was gone...? Cheers.

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nice! you guys just cruised it.

how long of a rap is it? could you do it with just 1 50m rope? also, looks like you guys didn't really rope up for anything. did you pull out the rope for anything other than the rap?

 

The rap is like 10m, so you're fine with a 30m rope. I didn't use a rope for anything, but my partner wanted one at the top of the runnels (just after the rappel), and again at the transition between the second and third couloirs. The rest we soloed.

 

Nice work. That was me you glissaded past while I skinned toward the pass. Thanks for leaving those rap anchors at the N face entry, I snowboarded down the Option #3 route finding excellent steep skiing conditions. Did you guys pick up a BCA probe 240cm in an orange case about 1.5 miles from the gate? I had stashed a shovel and probe there about 50ft. from the road behind a rock, and under a couple cabeza sized rocks. When I came back the rocks were upturned, and the probe was gone...? Cheers.

 

Sorry I didn't stop to chat, the glissade was quicker than I anticipated. I did not pick up your probe (or even see it). Shitty that someone would pick it up.

 

We didn't leave the rap anchor on the N Face, that was there already. Right on for snowboarding that, I have great respect for all of those who would snowboard/ski that!

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Nice work, sorry I couldn't join you on that one. Great pics. You've been killing stuff this year!

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I would say the route is just coming into shape. It's not completely formed up yet. Give it some melt-freeze and I think it'll be a lot better than it is right now. Usually the route is good into May.

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It's only a first descent if he posts a turn by turn narrative complete with photos, on at least three different forums, minimum!

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Looks like steepy bootied my bootied trango cam! Dude, I wouldn't trust that piece on lead. But if you're a dirtbag, I guess it's bomber. Congrats on a monster day!

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Hey Telemarker, thanks for establishing the option 3 variation, that thing was sick! I'd be happy to get your cam back to ya at some point. Actually did just use it a few times at the City of Rocks past few days...

splitboard.com Heres a link to my TR of Colchuck NBC and Dragontail TC Option 3 in a day. Sorry to clog/crosspost, thought it might be of some interest.

Cheers!

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Hey Telemarker, thanks for establishing the option 3 variation, that thing was sick! I'd be happy to get your cam back to ya at some point. Actually did just use it a few times at the City of Rocks past few days...

splitboard.com Heres a link to my TR of Colchuck NBC and Dragontail TC Option 3 in a day. Sorry to clog/crosspost, thought it might be of some interest.

Cheers!

 

Keep the cam! At least it's getting some good use. It was gathering dust in my booty bin anyways. Again, amazing linkup! Makes me feel lazy.

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