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[TR] Goode Mountain - Northeast Buttress 7/3/2016


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Trip: Goode Mountain - Northeast Buttress


Date: 7/3/2016


Trip Report:

With the 3 day weekend, Allie and I chose Goode as our objective. What a climb! This is full value Cascades climbing at its best: absurdly long approach, bushwhacking, stream crossings, slide alder, class 4 approach slabs, glacier crossing, moat crossing, and of course a giant beautiful ridge climb. We encountered everything from bluebird weather to rain, snow, and whiteout, and everything from dry rock to icy couloirs. Definitely a varied experience! Each of the three days felt completely different.


The actual climb of the Northeast Buttress was by far the fastest and easiest part of the whole trip. It's also very fun and beautiful, as good as any similar ridge route I've climbed anywhere.


Here's our approximate track, 36 miles and 9700' of elevation gain:



We were also gonna try to summit Storm King on Monday, but it sent all its storms against us and we had to settle for just Goode. As it turned out, we were wiped out enough by the time we got back to the car that it was probably a good thing we hadn't also climbed Storm King.


On the way in, I was worried about the stream crossings as we are in the midst of the melt cycle, but they turned out very manageable. At Grizzly Creek, we went upstream to a constriction and I threw this log across the stream which we used as a bridge:



North Fork Bridge Creek was also easily crossed on a log, a little bit downstream of where you bushwhack down to it:




The bushwhacking after crossing the North Fork was pretty intense:




We emerged out of the bushes onto talus leading up the south side of the valley towards Goode:



Goode standing proud above, with Storm King on the right:



We chose the direct approach just right of the first waterfall (center of the photo below the NEB), as shown in our track and described in other trip reports. As we ascended, we were surrounded by waterfalls plunging into snowy gullies with giant motes, which looks pretty cool:




Here, we encountered slabs that were slightly thought provoking with 3 day packs and mountaineering boots:




Above the slabs, we found the "magical alder tunnel" mentioned in other trip reports. It was magical in some areas:




And not so magical in others:




After getting out of the alder, we found a snow finger that led us all the way up to the 5400' bivy:



We found out that 5400' bivy really only had spaces big enough for a bivies, but we set up my firstlight there anyway:



In the morning, we were at first greeted by heavy clouds and light rain:




However, we decided to wait and see what the weather would do, and by 8am it cleared up and we decided to go for it. The Goode glacier was minimally crevassed and crossing it was easy, with fun views of seracs around us:





We tried several spots to get onto the Northeast Buttress, but they didn't connect until the very top one before the constriction leading up the couloir between Goode and Memaloose Ridge. Here, we downclimbed into the moat and then traversed along the rocks to the base of the route:




The first pitch was loose and dirty class 5 until we reached the crest, but after that it quickly eased up into mellow class 3/4 terrain with grassy ledges:



All of the 3/4 climbing is on the climber's left side of the crest or occasionally on the crest itself, but never on the right side. We made quick progress up the buttress, doing the class 3/4 section in 2 simul pitches.




As the crest narrowed, the climbing reached a fairly obvious transition where it got harder. We pitched out 3 pitches, each of which involved bypassing difficulties on the crest by going left and then traversing back. After that, the climbing eased up again just as the "black ampitheatre" came into view. It is very obvious on the right side of the crest:




Which the crest is not that steep, the exposure on it is wild and enjoyable:





We got to the bivy ledge and chose the right arete, which other trip reports had said was the easy one:




This proved to be true, and we did the section from the bivy ledge to the summit in a single simul pitch, at the end of which I had one nut left on my harness and no other gear.




On level with Black Tooth Notch:



Nearing the summit:



Summit at last!



We downclimbed 30' from the summit and then did 3 rappels, all strongly trending rappeler's left to get to a final slung horn anchor, from which we traversed on a ledge out to Black Tooth Notch. There's a rap station right at the notch, which we used rather than scrambling down to the next rap station:



The SW couloir was filled with snow, and the last (3rd) rappel landed us nicely onto it:




The snow was very gloppy in some areas, but ice hard in others, and we ended up face-in downclimbing the whole couloir:




At the bottom of the couloir, there's a cairn on the left and you scramble down some easy choss:




From there, broad easy snow slopes led us down to a flat bivy site at 7700', where there was conveniently also running water:




In the morning, when we were supposed to go do Storm King, we were greeted with this view out the door of our tent:




We slept in for a few hours, but the white out and the snow continued, and at 9am we began our descent:




In the whiteout, we didn't find whatever "climber's trail" is supposed to exist in the area, but we scrambled down a bunch of class 3/4 slabs and boulders heading in the general direction of the rib west of the broad ravine. We eventually ended up in beautiful meadows (having forgotten to take our helmets off):




The meadows quickly gave way to burnt out forest which continued all the way down to the park creek trail. The "climber's trail" down this area is pretty much completely gone as far as I could tell, just walk down through the ash of the burnt forest. There are faint remnants of the climber's path for the final 500' of descent:







After hitting the Park Creek trail, we hiked out ~16 miles, by the end of which I was about ready to fall over. Definitely a full value experience!


Gear Notes:


- set of nuts

- single set of cams 0.3-2

- 10 double slings, 3 single slings


Mountaineering boots, no climbing shoes needed.


Crampons and ice axe were needed.



Approach Notes:


Edited by ilias
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No trees at all on the PCT between the trailhead at hwy 20 and the north fork trail junction. Someone had just come through with a chainsaw within the last day or two. The park creek trail, on the other hand, was completely covered in trees.

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No trees at all on the PCT between the trailhead at hwy 20 and the north fork trail junction. Someone had just come through with a chainsaw within the last day or two. The park creek trail, on the other hand, was completely covered in trees.



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Of course! Hope it helps someone. Also, I made a detailed beta sheet based on a collation of Summitpost info, Steph Abegg's report, and some other trip reports. If anyone is headed up there and wants it let me know.

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