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Pete Wojcik

[TR] Little Tahoma - Fryingpan-Whitman 7/3/2015

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Trip: Little Tahoma - Fryingpan-Whitman

 

Date: 7/3/2015

 

Trip Report:

My brother and I tackled Little Tahoma on July 2-3. We got a late start on Thursday afternoon from the parking lot, had plans to camp at the Meany Crest that night, and summit the next day.

 

When we reached Summerland I was surprised to see how little snow there was leading up to the Meany Crest. The last time I was here in mid-July, 2011 the snow line was well below Summerland which made for an easy walk to the base of the Fryingpan glacier.

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After taking a look from Summerland, and looking at the map, we decided to try and gain the Meany Crest from the east.

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It ended up being a scramble to the peak slightly northeast of the Meany Crest and took a little longer than the route we took on the way back down.

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Once we reached the top of the peak, the Meany Crest was a short walk away along the ridgeline on the left.

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Awesome bivy site!

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We got an early start around 3:30 am Friday morning. There were clear skies and a full moon, which allowed us to navigate without headlamps most of the way before dawn.

 

On the Fryingpan heading to the Whitman crest.

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Sunrise at the Whitman crest.

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Getting ready for the Whitman glacier.

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The crevasses had begun to open up but were still passable and easy to navigate.

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The notch we were shooting for is marked with an arrow in the photo below.

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Heading to the notch.

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At the beginning of the scramble on the rock looking east.

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Scrambling up the notch.

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After this snowfield there are occasional rock cairns which lead to the summit, however I found scrambling to the summit to be pretty straight forward both times I was up here.

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When I was near the summit in 2011 for the first time, I was led by another person in our group. I was unaware of the last roughly 30 feet of class 4 rock which leads to the true summit. No one in our party brought a rope or protection to the summit scramble (we left them at the notch). I was pretty disappointed in having to turn around without reaching the true summit! This time my brother and I brought our rope and some protection for that section. It was his first time being on something with that much exposure however, and he was not feeling it. I read a couple of reports of people tackling that section without a rope but just couldn’t bring myself to it. The north side is a huge 1000’+ drop, and the south side isn’t much better. It didn’t really bother me this time, I was just glad to be up there with my brother on a beautiful day. I’ll have to wait until next time to get the actual summit.

 

My brother near the actual summit.

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Me near the actual summit.

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Shown below is the route we took down from the Meany Crest. After coming down that side, a couple of other routes on this side were pretty obvious.

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I think scrambling through loose rock to and from the Meany Crest tacked on about 2+ hours to the total trip time as compared to the last time I was up here. If I ever do Little Tahoma again I would want to hike in similar conditions to my previous trip with the snow level at or below Summerland.

 

Gear Notes:

Crevasse rescue gear. A few runners and cams for the last bit to the true summit.

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