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climbup

Mt Adams climb

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Hi, I tried searching but I didn't see anything so I'm just posting this. I'm a beginner climber, with no real experience, and some friends and I are interested in climbing Adams this summer. I've read all about the South Spur route, but is there any other route we should consider? I've heard South Spur is really crowded, and I was wondering about Mazama glacier or North/Northwest ridge. Also, do we need crampons and an ice axe if we're climbing in mid-late july? Thanks

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Only time I've done the Adam's glacier was in late season and it was crampons conditions for sure so it depends on when you do it. And I'd bring an ice ax. Knowing how to use it helps too. :brew::tup:

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South Climb is a great beginner route. Take crampons and an axe for sure, and know how to glissade. The trip down from the false summit is among the best glissades out there. As for the crowds, yes, they're there, but it's relative. It can make for a fun day too, depending on who you run into. Case in point: Check out this TR I wrote for the Oregonian last summer: http://www.oregonlive.com/outdoors/index.ssf/2009/08/a_day_in_the_life_of_mount_ada_2.html

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If you want to avoid the conga line, start early and time your summit for sunrise. Of course, that makes for a painfully impossibly glissade.

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My daughter & I did the south side last summer as our very first climb. We went the second week in July and used our crampons from around 6500 feet up. We also used our axes and thought our poles were invaluable. The glissading was great. Something we'd never done before. We got pretty beat up doing it, but it was worth every bruise. We did hire a guide, as we wanted to be able to ask a million climbing questions and learn basic climbing skills. We learned alot up there. You might want to consider seeing if someone with some experience on here would want tag along with you so you can learn as you go. The training and experience made me more comfortable for our upcoming plans to attempt Rainier. Even though Adams isn't full of glaciers like Rainier, it is still quite a climb. As you drive up to the approach the first time and are staring at it, your heart will start pounding and it will look really big that first time! Have fun and please post about your climb. Oh, and yes there were other climbers up there, but it never felt crowded. It's not like you see on other mountains, where you have to all be single file, waiting your turn. We met some of the neatest people...and two black labs. The dogs summited faster then we did!

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You'll have fun on the south route. Practice with an ice axe if you don't have experience/confidence walking on fairly steep snow, it gets a little bit steep just below the false summit. Some are perfectly happy with ski poles, some like an ice axe at that spot, depends on conditions. You won't be alone up there, but you'll come across lots of nice happy people and you'll get to the top of a huge volcano if everything works out. Awesome. Have a great time.

 

On the descent take care to go down the same drainage you climbed up as you get back to treeline. The radial drainages can be a bit disorienting and there's likely to be tracks all over the place.

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You can also avoid the crowds by climbing late in the day. Everyone else leaves the parking lot between 5 and 8 in the morning.

 

I have not climbed the North Ridge, but I like the Northwest Ridge. It has a couple thousand feet of rock hopping, and a short steep snow climb near the top that is one notch more serious than what you'll encounter on the South Ridge.

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I did Adams glacier route about two weeks ago, it's heavily glaciated, not heavily trafficked but probably more advanced than you would be comfortable with. I wouldn't advise is as a first glacier route, you'll want to know how to climb on a rope team, crevasse rescue, steep hard snow, some front-pointing.

 

The south spur is a hoot, I went mid-week once and our party of 6 was the only one on the lunch counter. I did it once on fourth of july weekend, it was a friggin goat rodeo.

 

Baker is supposed to be good but one person told me if the weather is lousy in only one place in Washington, odds are it'll be on Baker. He's been weathered out more than once.

 

My vote: Adams South spur, up on Thursday, summit Friday morning then hike out.

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In my opinion, the SW chute is best as a descent route. It is a great ski run, but to climb it you'd undertake a very nice hike to the bottom and then burn calves for what - 3500 feet?

 

The FA was completed by one of the strongest guys I ever knew, and I bet you, Mr. Kukuzki, are pretty damn strong too. But what about the rest of us?

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Beginner rule #37:

Take your crampons OFF before you glissade!!!

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