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jstluise

[TR] Mt Rainer - Gib Ledges 6/17/2011

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Trip: Mt Rainer - Gib Ledges

 

Date: 6/17/2011

 

Trip Report:

After receiving some great beta on the route, the two of us were excited to get up there and try something new. We left Paradise at around noon on Thursday (6/16), with plans to climb the next morning. The weather was excellent on both days with little to no wind.

 

After talking to the climbing ranger, we confirmed the route was in excellent condition. He suggested climbing the ridge all the way up to the Beehive before dropping onto the Cowlitz, due to a crevasse opening up below. You could see tracks from climbers staying on the Cowlitz the entire way to the ledges, but he just found it easier to climb the ridge. We followed his advice.

 

With only 4 hours of sleep :tdown: we were out of Muir just before 2am. There were only two other climbers on the route; they camped at the Beehive so they got a good head start on us. I think they were at the entrance to the ledges by the time we hit the Beehive.

 

After passing the Beehive, we had a short rappel off the ridge onto the glacier. Once to the entrance to the ledges, navigating the ledges were pretty straightforward. We soloed the route up to the rib. We roped up at the rib just in case we wanted to do a running belay on the last part of the ledges, but the snow conditions were great and we were comfortable so we cruised up to the top of the chute.

 

We made it from Muir to the top of Gib rock (12,700') in just under 4.5 hours. From there, we followed the ranger's advice and climbed straight up to join up with the DC route. We hooked up with the DC route at around 13,700'.

 

The route up the ledges definitely wiped us out. The time from Muir to the summit was around 8.5 hours. We got some pictures and took a short break on the crater rim, then we took off down the DC route. We were beat and it took us a long 5 hours back to Muir. Oh, and then another 2 hours back to Paradise! Long day!

 

All in all, it was a great climb and we couldn't ask for better weather. It was nice to try something new and get on the route while it is still in good shape. I think the route still has a lot of life left in it.

 

Photos:

A bit cloudy going up to Muir:

DSC_0076_01.jpg

 

Above the clouds:

DSC_0130_01.jpg

 

A view of Gib Rock and the route:

DSC_0080_01.jpg

 

Gib Rock:

DSC_0089_01.jpg

 

Looking up the Cowlitz at the entrance to the ledges:

DSC_0118_01.jpg

 

Sun going down over the ridge. You can see the two climbers heading up to the Beehive (on the ridge to the lower right of the sun):

DSC_0152_01.jpg

 

We had a visitor at Muir:

DSC_0187_01.jpg

 

Finally on the summit:

DSC_0212_01.jpg

 

Steamin':

DSC_0246_01.jpg

 

Adams, Hood, and Shasta Jefferson:

DSC_0213_01.jpg

 

Saint Helens:

DSC_0214_01.jpg

 

Myself on the summit...er...upside down:

DSC_0240_02.jpg

 

Nice day!:

DSC_0255_01.jpg

 

Ingraham Flats and Camp Muir from the top of DC:

DSC_0273_01.jpg

 

Ingraham Flats:

DSC_0272_01.jpg

 

Little T:

DSC_0267_01.jpg

 

Camp Muir from Cathedral Gap:

DSC_0283_01.jpg

 

Here is some GPS data (ascent in green, descent in red):

GPSmap01.jpg

GPSmap02.jpg

 

Gear Notes:

We carried our standard glacier gear. We had 3 pickets, two screws, and some longer pieces of webbing in case of any belaying on the ledges.

Edited by jstluise

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JST,

 

Glad you pulled it off.

 

Did your line follow along up the ledges where the snow/ice met Gib rock to Gib Chute then?

 

Your timing was close to ours too sounds like....

 

d

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Did your line follow along up the ledges where the snow/ice met Gib rock to Gib Chute then?

Yeah, we were right up against the rock, as high as possible all the way to the chute. There were some patches of ice and crusty snow, but most of the snow made for easy foot placements. The sketchiest part was dealing with the rock/ice with crampons...I think it was right around the rib but I don't remember exactly.

 

d, after you exited the chute did you ascend straight up, similar to our route to join up with the DC route? Or did you go climber's left? The ranger told us to the way we did because even though going left looked good from below, it was broken up pretty good. I didn't know how the route looked back when you climbed.

 

For our first climb of the season, I thought we were in pretty good shape (physically), but definitely could be better. I'm sure the lack of sleep didn't help.

 

PS. Whoever skis the Gib Chute is insane! Looking down that thing...I couldn't even imagine :shock:

Edited by jstluise

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Yup, we made a B line for Columbia Crest from the top of the chute @ 12, 600ft. Intersected with the DC at 13,700...

 

We're headed back up to the Emmons Monday. Want to have a look at Russell Cliff...

 

Can't imagine skiing the Gib Chute either, but then, I don't ski per se. I do nordic in the winter to stay in shape, but not downhill...

 

d

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Jefferson is south beyond Hood, eh?

 

You're right! Thanks! I figured Shasta was a little too far away to see.

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those are some seriously schweet rainier pix! they made me move from my comfortable reclining position just so I could log in and tell you that.

--thx

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I see you're also a purveyor of the fabled Summit Headstand. I thought I was the only one! Those are great because you can pretend you're holding the entire planet above your head.

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jst,

 

Thanks for adding the great pics to your TR. Especially enjoyed the pic of the upper ledges right before the Chute showing exposure there. Excellent angle for that shot. We never did see the Muir fox on our 6/4 - 6/5 climb, that guy looks like he's eating well up there. Man, you guys had the weather for your summit day too...

 

My partner and I just got back last night from doing the Emmons/Winthrop route, summited Tuesday into what was about a 35 knot headwind (and gusts up to?) so no headstands up there for us... It was so cold we barely snapped a couple pics and retreated into the crater for a leeward break behind some boulders before descending to Camp Schurman.

 

Getting my money's worth on that permit this year.

 

Later,

 

d

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I'm glad everyone liked the pics! Hauling the extra weight of my D90 proved to be well worth it!

 

d, glad to hear you got another summit in. We're planning on hitting it again later this season. We have some other peaks we want to cross off our list first. The Muir fox was very active while we were up there...he even woke up at 1:30am to see us off and scrounge around for some leftovers.

 

The headstand idea came about from my high school drafting teacher. There was a picture of him in the local newspaper headstanding the summit that I thought was pretty cool...I'll have to dig out the article and scan it. This was the first time we were on top where we had headstand conditions :cool:

 

PS. It took me numerous tries to muscle my tired legs up over my head to complete the move...I was literally laughing to myself upside down because I didn't realize it would be that hard to do a friggin headstand :grin:

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I'm glad everyone liked the pics! Hauling the extra weight of my D90 proved to be well worth it!

 

First, awesome job!

 

Second, what lens(es) did you use? I have a D90 myself...

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First, awesome job!

 

Second, what lens(es) did you use? I have a D90 myself...

 

Thanks! I took along one lens: 18-105mm. The lens is very versatile. This is my first dSLR and I am VERY happy with it. I am packing it with the Lowepro Topload Zoom 50 holster (perfect fit and it allows for me to keep the lens hood on) bag with the Lowepro chest harness. Wasn't quite sure how it would work out carrying it on my chest (especially mountaineering) but it worked great! I could hardly notice it and had no trouble seeing my feet...even on the descent. Only difficulty I ran into was messing with my harness, but I managed. Best of all, I had quick access to it for fast shots :cool:

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Thanks! I took along one lens: 18-105mm. The lens is very versatile. This is my first dSLR and I am VERY happy with it. I am packing it with the Lowepro Topload Zoom 50 holster (perfect fit and it allows for me to keep the lens hood on) bag with the Lowepro chest harness. Wasn't quite sure how it would work out carrying it on my chest (especially mountaineering) but it worked great! I could hardly notice it and had no trouble seeing my feet...even on the descent. Only difficulty I ran into was messing with my harness, but I managed. Best of all, I had quick access to it for fast shots :cool:

 

Awesome. I usually take my 18-55 and call it good. I'm eventually wanting a 35mm prime, had actually ordered one, but it was backordered for so long I bought more climbing gear with the money. I have a Lowepro single bag with all weather cover, and I think next time I'll rig it like a chest harness...

 

Always curious about other people's rigs!

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Awesome. I usually take my 18-55 and call it good. I'm eventually wanting a 35mm prime, had actually ordered one, but it was backordered for so long I bought more climbing gear with the money. I have a Lowepro single bag with all weather cover, and I think next time I'll rig it like a chest harness...

 

Always curious about other people's rigs!

 

My D90 came with the 18-105mm, as well as the 70-300mm, which I haven't used a whole lot yet. I just got a killer deal on the package so I figured what the heck.

 

I looked around quite a bit for a good setup, especially for mountaineering. Seemed like the chest harness deal worked well for people.

 

Another system that was recommended to me: http://cottoncarrier.com/

Looks pretty cool, though I don't like that the camera is exposed all the time. Maybe in a hiking situation where falls are unlikely, but I wouldn't be comfortable using it on the side of a mountain. And, no weather protection.

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a 50mm prime is also good for climbing. Good enough for scenic and also enough zoom for great climbing shots. Canon has a cheap but good quality one for less than 100$.

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