Route Climbed: From the south Date Climbed: Feb 12, 2005
What can I say? The mountain was completely socked in. I couldn't find my way to the picnic area through the maze of dirt roads all over the place - I set off on foot, a couple miles away from the mountain, and just explored my way to the base of the mountain. Never seeing the picnic area (in an entirely different drainage), I started up a steep, loose gully. From there, I found myself in a winter wonderland at the base of the prominent cliffs on the mountain's south side. There was some decent snow on the ground, the trees were frozen over with huge clumps of ice dangling from the branches - visibility was 50 feet or less. I was leaving cairns all over the place just to find my way back down later. I navigated by compass, intuition, and a rudimentary understanding of the route. I came to the base of the headwall and recognized it from pictures I'd seen. Just to be sure, I continued eastward along the cliffs for awhile and scrambled up to the ridge crest (rather knife-like toward the east). Back at the headwall, I found it to be rather icy (and dangerous). It was steeper than I'd expected. The exposure wasn't too bad - but enough to hurt you. Once at the top of the headwall, then above the class 3 ramps and ledges above that, I wandered up to the apparent summit, which was marked by a cairn. The visibility was non-existent, but I knew from researching the net that the actual summit was still 1/4 mile or so away westward along the ridge. I continued on and bagged the true summit, signed the register with a bogus name, and left. Rather snowy, very icy - no views the entire day. Short hike - but pretty cool in wintry conditions.