Gerald Olbu of Missoula lead a group of us up & over the top of the Sheep's Head, down to the glacier and to the summit. Returned on the same route - - we were on route from about 0600 to 0100 the next day, about 20 hours.
From the Mission Valley, via Ashley Lakes Date Climbed: Jul 2, 2006
Wow! This mountain has absolutely everything going for it—except trails! An unplanned two-day epic (13 & 16 hours respectively) with Bob Bolton and Duane Gilliland will, I sincerely hope, be the most memorable of its type I ever do. (If it's not, flowers can be sent to my funeral.)
McDonald Peak isn't "just another mountain"—get off on a poor route, and even with a GPS it becomes a monster. If someone injures a leg (which happened), if you're forced to bivy on an island in the snow just below timberline (also happened), if you've got nothing in the way of food to sustain through a grueling second day but munchies (a bit hard on the energy level), it's also a monster, and not a forgiving one, either.
Route-finding the second day was extremely difficult; Bob and Duane were amazing, talking each other through the possibilities. Those guys really know what it's all about!
Grizzly poop was encountered. Ripped-apart logs were encountered. No grizzlies were encountered.
Day two: 6 AM to arrival at vehicle at 10 PM, with one of the benefits of a northern-tier state being it was light all the way.
This is one outing won't leave my mind. I don't want it to.
"After the first glass, you see things as you wish they were. After the second, you see things as they are not. Finally, you see things as they really are, which is the most horrible thing in the world."
--Oscar Wilde on Absinthe