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ckouba

[TR] Mt Hood, Oregon - Wy'East 2/3/2011

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Trip: Mt Hood, Oregon - Wy'East

 

Date: 2/3/2011

 

Trip Report:

Very straightforward, enjoyable climb. Met Dani (snobird) on the forum here and we had a great climb together. Weather dropped in on us and made the summit experience "memorable" but we correctly got back down.

 

We crossed low (near base of the Steel Cliffs) on the White River Glacier- it's in fine shape. There is potential for lots of ice cookies coming off Steel Cliffs but it was quiet for us despite lots of wind.

 

Dani on the east moraine:

IMG_2582.JPG

 

Slopes are steeper than expected to gain the top of the summit crater above the Wy'East Face. If you're thinking of skiing, I'd wait a little while as it looked pretty scoured and shiny.

 

Transition from the moraine onto the face:

156.JPG

 

The Wy'East Face in the sunrise:

IMG_2579.JPG

 

Crossing the top of the ridge is straightforward and gives you a reasonable view of the route to come. We worked across the ridge to where it gets steep and then traversed right onto a prow. Continued traversing right slots you into a short couloir leading directly to the summit ridge. This isn't completely obvious or visible from ridge but it does play out.

 

Crossing the summit ridge:

158.JPG

 

The view toward the summit from the ridge, route not quite obvious or visible:

160.JPG

 

This is also when the high layer of clouds finally dropped onto the summit and beyond us as well. We topped out the couloir in a near white out, meeting the party of two from the North Face on their way down. We didn't see Ben from Coopers Spur but he couldn't have been too far away.

 

Clouds dropping in, at the route-finding crux:

161.JPG

 

Gratuitous summit shot:

162.JPG

 

For the descent we hiked over to the Old Chute (still in the white out) and followed someone's uptrack down until beyond the bergschrund, then cut quickly over to the hogsback. There were more cookies falling at this point but nothing more than you'd expect for the conditions. From here, clouds drifted in and out until triangle moraine and we slogged it back to the lot.

 

All in all a very enjoyable route. One alpine axe will get the job done, two tools might be more enjoyable though. We took two pickets and used them a couple times with an 8mm x 30m glacier rope running belay.

 

Snowpack was consistently mixed through the entire climb, from wind-scoured water ice chunks, to styrofoam, to hardpack, to sugar over hardpack under a crust. Everything seemed stable enough for the layers we were treading on.

 

Great times, fun route, really enjoyable to be back out on the mountain. Thanks Dani.

 

Gear Notes:

single alpine axe, two tools might make it funner

8mil 30m rope

2 pickets

 

Approach Notes:

White River is filled in and easy crossing

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Oh, and...

 

Somewhere between the summit and the parking lot, the our rope went MIA. If you happen to be up there and stumble across a blue 8mm x 30m Beale, much good karma and happiness could be yours for helping it find its way back down.

 

Thanks!

 

Chris

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