“Well, that’s what we do during the summer!” replied Doug to my large list of complaints about my first overnight adventure during the hottest day of the year so far. At the top of my list was the heat. I figured at 7000’+ it would be cooler than the 97 degree temps in nearby Darrington.
We did the approach Saturday evening (6-930 pm). We suffered, but drank plenty of water, and it cooled off at the bivy below the snowfield.
Sunday we were off at 630, and immediately noticed a spike in the temps once above the snow. Crap, lets get a high as possible before the sun hits at 11 am! This too was a struggle with sustained, difficult, yet outstanding rock, and also operating as a party of 3. We managed to enjoy ourselves despite the pressure of returning home at a decent hour with reserves to work on Monday. Over half of the climbing was great fun, yet there is just enough lichen to make a negative taint to the minority terrain. With more traffic (hint, hint) it would make for one of the funner alpine routes around!! Hey for “Alpine Climbing”, it doesnt get much better than this in Washington state. Expect some 5.8 runouts, and moderate route-finding difficulties. Expect also a strenuous, and steep outing, especially if hot. Dont, however expect crowds, unless this spray does a number on it?
Back in 2008, while doing an fa of the SE Ridge of Sloan, Lane and I noticed this line, and vowed to return shortly thereafter, It was not long after that Rad and Blake scooped it! I was surprised to recently find out that our report and intrigue did not figure in their ascent. I am relieved that I did not have the duty of doing this line ground up! It was a proud ascent these 2 amazing climbers did, hats off to them!