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Bob BurdRoute Climbed: Avalanche Gulch Date Climbed: May 25, 2002  Sucess!

Bob Burd

Roundtrip time was 5 hours longer than last year, but it was fun going to the top with my younger brother. Trip Report
Posted Jun 19, 2002 9:56 pm

rcorby2Route Climbed: Avalanch Gulch Date Climbed: June 7, 8, and 9, 2002


Climb was planned for June 7, 8, and 9th, 2002. Afternoon of 6/8 clouds rolled in. Later in the afternoon snow and high winds (40mph+) started hitting our camp at 50/50 Flat. In the morning (2:00am) the storm had intensified to 50mph+ so a summit attempt was called off. Retreated down the Climber's Gully the morning of the 9th. For those who are interested, this was part of a three day Intro to Mountaineering Course and I will post the details of this in a trip report within the next week or two.
Posted Jun 12, 2002 8:34 pm

mdostbyRoute Climbed: Avy Gulch Date Climbed: June 2, 2002  Sucess!


Awesome day! After two days of questionable weather Sunday cleared up very nicely. No wind, cool in the morning and very warm later in the day. Climbed with two good friends, sford and forjan. We all summited by 9:30 AM. My fourth summit.

-Mike Ostby-
Posted Jun 3, 2002 9:22 pm

peak baggerRoute Climbed: Avalanche Gulch Date Climbed: May 18 2002  Sucess!

peak bagger

Clear day and very windy from 12000 ft to the summit.
Posted May 19, 2002 9:24 am

synne.chadwickRoute Climbed: Green Buttress to Sargeants Ridge Date Climbed: December 2000  Sucess!


We started off late in the afternoon because we were waiting to see what the weather would do. As we started out, the wind picked up speed. It got worse as we set up camp. We were so tired we were hoping that the weather would stay bad and give us a rest day, but, at 2:00am the weather was calm and clear, so we ate our breakfast and started climbing. We summited at 12:30pm. As far as we could tell, not only did we have the summit to ourselves, we were the only people on the whole mountain. The ridge was pretty easy, though there was a lot less snow than normal. Having all the chossy boulders covered in snow would have been better. It's true what people say, misery hill is truly miserable!

Posted May 18, 2002 4:54 am

GlencoeRoute Climbed: Green Butte/Sargeants Ridge Date Climbed: 23rd November, 2001


Snowshoed to window at 10,000ft. Postholed knee deep even in snowshoes. Storm warning broadcast. Made camp. Extremely strong winds throughout the night. Dug out in the morning. White out, heavy snow fall and strong winds prevented further progress. Returned to hot-tub at ground level. Will attempt again in spring.
Posted May 7, 2002 6:20 pm

jeffnRoute Climbed: Avalanche Gulch Date Climbed: June 2000  Sucess!
Windy enough that Rangers were trying to turn use back. Still well worth it.
Posted Apr 3, 2002 7:59 pm

darinchadwickRoute Climbed: Green Buttress Ridge Date Climbed: December 2000  Sucess!


Synne and I poached this peak. Camped at the tiny saddle at the base of the ridge. A much better route than the avalanche gulch slog. A storm was breathing it's last with strong winds and light snow on the approach to camp.

We woke up at 2:00am, brewed and chewed, and were out climbing before 3:00am. Hustled up the ridge, with a few curious third class steps to crawl over, cluncky plastic boots make this more interesting. Took a rope, never needed it. Got to the summit ALONE at 12:30pm. Just the two of us on a very popular mountain.

Hustled down avalanche gulch, wearily traversed back to camp and collapsed. 3 hours later another storm hit and screamed at us all afternoon\night. Hah! We caught our window and used all of it. This takes some of the sting out of trying Rainier 5x and never summiting due to weather.
Posted Mar 29, 2002 4:05 am

rpcRoute Climbed: Red Banks Date Climbed: Memorial Day wknd. 2001  Sucess!


This was an intro. to climbing course for my wife and me shortly after we moved to Portland from NYC. Guided 2 night trip to summit with some basic schooling. Enough to get us hooked and started. The weather delivered - NICE. The guides were cool - the clients were a mix. Red banks were cool; summit was nice if a bit windy (loads of people on it).
Posted Feb 12, 2002 4:00 pm

kdonaldsonRoute Climbed: Avanlanch Gulch Date Climbed: May 12, 2001


We decided to go in early may to hopefully beat some of the summer crowds and get some good snow/winter like climbing - We did beat the crowds - only about 8 tents maybe at Helen lake - definitely go before the long weekend. We drove up Thursday, and Thursday afternoon we set out from Bunny flats and climbed to around 8000 ft and set up camp on the right side of lower avalanche gulch. Friday we started about 8 am and got to Helen lake around early-mid afternoon. Snowshoes were handy as we started punching through after 9-10 AM. We were in bed by 6 and rose around 2 am to start the summit push. Slight headache, but popping a couple advil did the trick. The moon was out full and no clouds so with the white snow, everything glowed so much we didn't need headlamps! Styrofoam snow conditions making the walk up on cramps very enjoyable. We cut through the red banks, and onto Misery hill at which point the wind started to really get moving and just below the summit ridge we decided to retreat as the winds were now 60 mph + . We literally had to dig in with cramps and axe while laying on the ground to stay in one place and you had to be less than an inch away from someone to hear them. So close, but it turned to be a good decision as the lenticular cloud that was starting to form grew and engulfed the rest of the mountain by noon. We felt strong, and happy knowing that it was weather that had turned us back and not conditioning.
Posted Feb 11, 2002 12:25 pm

ShawnRoute Climbed: Avalanche Gulch Date Climbed: 6/25/2000


We did a 2-day summit attempt, camping just under Helen Lake on Saturday night and Summit attempt on Sunday. The weather both days were just the best they could be, warm during the day, clear skies, and crisp nights, with little wind.

Alpine start on Sunday morning at 3:30a and eventually getting moving closer to 5a :) We reached Helen Lake and saw most of the folks either still sleeping or just getting up, there was also a large crowd working their way toward the Heart to climb towards Red Banks.

I was still weak from AMS that I got the day before and working slow for the next couple of hours towards Red Banks. Near the top, however, I got off the usual "stairs" beaten into the snow by the groups and started sprinting zig-zag style with crampons and ice axe up to Red Banks, trying to avoid the roped groups going slowly up the stairs.

Once at Red Banks, however, a combination of already battling against AMS and feeling the accomplishment of getting this far while feeling really crappy, along with clouds moving in quickly froma distance, we decided to end the summit attempt. Misery hill was remaining along with the summit plateau snowfield and then the actual summit, about 800' in all --- oh well, another day!

The descent was awesome --- by now, it was perfect glissade weather with sunny skies at lower elevations, softer snow, and thousands of feet of twists, turns, and great speed sliding down the volcano on our butts.

Next time, more time will be taken to get acclimitized to enjoy this beautiful place. This is one great mountain/volcano to play on and we'll be coming back for more and more, especially if you avoid the crowds on the popular weekends.
Posted Jan 23, 2002 10:51 pm

NelsonRoute Climbed: Avalanche Gulch Date Climbed: May 1973  Sucess!


My first mountain. Rented crampons & ice axe, no training, no experience, no smarts. Ever try glissading with crampons on? Got classic AMS, but camped on the summit anyway. Survived, got smarter, and now enjoy myself much more. But, a great mountain to get started on!
Posted Jan 13, 2002 6:56 pm

RStokesRoute Climbed: Avalanche Gulch Date Climbed: September 9, 2000  Sucess!


Went up solo during the week in early September. No crowds and had most of Helen Lake to myself. Sunny weather all day with really strong wind gusts on the summit. Lots of debris falling off the Red Banks with golf ball sized rocks whizzing past me every 5-10 minutes. Climbed up and through a small notch in the center of the Red Banks. Snow was firm early in the morning and was softening up pretty good by late morning. Made the summit by 8:30am and had awesome views in every direction.
Posted Dec 21, 2001 4:28 pm

ElwoodRoute Climbed: Avalanche Gulch (2x) , Hotlum-Bolam Ridge, & Casaval Ridge Date Climbed: June 84, 86, Aug., 2000, & May 2004  Sucess!


I've been fairly lucky with good weather on this mountain, & had my share of bad weather too. Ha! My most rewarding climb thus far has been Casaval Ridge! the views from the top are terrific. I really enjoy the whole experience of climbing Shasta, from cruizing around, eating, buying any last minute supplies, & finding a cheap hotel in the town of Shasta to grunting it up the mountain!
Posted Nov 2, 2001 2:49 pm

steelemanRoute Climbed: Avy Gulch Date Climbed: May 1999 (2x)  Sucess!


My second time atop Shasta (first time was in 9/93). This time the winds were calm and the weather beautiful. No complaints (other than some dehydration on the way down). When on the mountain in '93, we got a serious taste of those famous Shasta windstorms.
Posted Oct 30, 2001 7:46 pm

ZancudoRoute Climbed: Avalanche Gulch Date Climbed: June 6 2001  Sucess!
After reading Hammer's description (below) I thought I would put in my two cents worth. I can not over state how strong the wind was, the air temp had to be no more than 20 and with the wind chill, God only knows how cold it was. The nalgene bottles inside my pack were frozen solid. I was ahead of Hammer through the Red Banks, up to the base of Misery Hill. Not knowing the route and being more than a little confused at the time, I waited for him there. We found a little shelter just after reaching the summit plateau and rested there. I could only sit for a few minutes, because I needed to keep moving. It would have been easy to just sit there and die. Crossing the summit plateau there were many piles of frozen vomit, from the climbers before us. It was really strange. Looking out from my glacier glasses, from under all that clothing (I was wearing all of the cloths I brought) it was as if I was watching the whole thing on TV. I was in a kind of dream state I just kept thinking "One foot in front of the other." When we crossed the plateau the wind was blowing so hard that I thought the summit may be unsafe. It is actually fairly protected. But it was still cold. We signed the summit register and bailed.
Posted Sep 20, 2001 3:09 pm

HammerRoute Climbed: Avalanche Gulch Date Climbed: June 6 ,2001  Sucess!


After failing our attempt in September last year, we decided to take an extra day climbing and do it earlier in the season. My uncle and I decided to go earlier and just spend time on the mountain. I was feeling really strong after doing Mt. Hood the past two weekends and was looking forward in summiting this mountain.

After our long drive down from Salem, we started from Bunny flats in the early afternoon. Our plan was to go up to around 9000' and stay there a night and wait for our friends to join us the following night. After we got to Horse camp we changed our minds and stayed the first night there so we could check out the Sierra Club Cabin in detail.

The next morning I decided I didn't want to carry my heavy pack so I split the contents in two and took the first half up to where we found a decent place to camp at about 8500'. We set up the tent and dug a snow kitchen and headed back down to Horse Camp. We waited there and watched the people as they came up for day hikes and others on there way up to Helen Lake. Our friends were coming in two pairs and after an hour or so they came into camp. We picked up the rest of our things and moved to our camp.

The next morning we were up and out of camp in a hurry. We wanted to get to Helen Lake as soon as possible so we could beat the rush of people on the weekend. By the time we got there it was already too late. What a mad house! so many tents it is what I would expect of an Everest Base Camp. After searching out an area where to set up tents we ended up waiting for summiters to break down their sites. We bagan the chore of melting/boiling water for our summit bid that night. After a few hours of bullshitting we headed to our tents to sleep. Our plan was to leave at 0300.

I was sound asleep and then the wind came-not a little but a lot. After some time my alarm went off and I got out of the tent. It was blowing so hard. I knew that our attempt had been thwarted once again. I went around to everyones tent and help reguy them out since they were getting pounded. I decided to give it an hour and reassess then. After an hour the wind had stopped-or so we thought. After a little breakfast we were moving. God I felt strong, and set a pretty hard pace. Next thing I knew I was several minutes ahead of everyone else. I waitied for them to catch up and then the wind started with new fury. We slowly moved up getting pelted with wind blown snow as we went. I had slowed my pace down but was still leaving a couple people behind. It was too windy and cold to stay put for too much time. At the top of the Heart we found some rocks to shelter us and wait for everyone to regroup. Even with the shelter we started getting cold as the wind continued to increase. I waited as long as possible but after everyone that had been waiting had moved on I abandoned my uncle. He was moving so slow that I knew that he would not summit and would probably turning around soon. The sun was coming up and I knew that he was plenty capable of getting himself down. When he turned around, the masses behind us began to do the same. The wind was just too much. Earlier in the day I had decided that I would crawl to the top if I had to but I was not getting turned around again.

The distance between myself and the rest of our group was large and they were moving toward the base of Thumb Rock where the boot track lead. I decided to make up some time and head through one of the Chimneys in the Red Banks. It worked and as one of my friends had traversed over to join me we made up time on the others and actually were at the Plateau at the base of Misery Hill before them. The wind had continued to pick up. The masses of people were not moving up anymore. The little that had came up above the Heart had turned around at the top of the Red Banks. At the base of Misery Hill all of the rest of my friends decided to go back down. The wind had freaked them out a little and they were tired. One of my friends, the one that had been turned around with me the year before, continued on with me. He had the same determination that I had and we were not turning around for nothing. I now know why they call it Misery Hill. I thought it would never end!

As we crested Misery Hill and approached the base of the summit pinnacle, my buddy told me that he was going to tag the summit and come down. No pictures, No summit register, no nothing! The wind was blowing so hard I thought my face was going to fall off. I have never been so cold in my life. We could barely walk upright and when a gust came it would knock you nearly over. As we nearly gained the Summit, my buddy said " this is good enough" and then we saw some other people huddled a few yards away. I talked him into making the true summit. As we moved past the people hiding from the wind we gained the Summit which afforded a little protection from the wind. We took our pictures, unrolled the celebratory Tibetan prayer flags and signed the summit register.

We tried to radio down to everyone but couldn't get through. We only spent a few minutes on top. I was starting to feel pretty shitty with no energy. I hadn't ate anything all day and our water was frozen solid.

As we approached Red Banks we finally radio'd everyone that we had actually summited and were on our way down. Tried to glissade but everything was too frozen and the speed was too much to deal with. Had to walk almost the whole way out. Did get a little glissading in.

Got back to Helen Lake and most everyone was already gone. Tents around us had been thrashed by the wind including the Ranger's. The Ranger had said that the wind had been 80-100 MPH. Incredible- I don't know what that would have put the wind chill factor at but I was cold that day. By now however, the wind was gone and it was getting hot. We broke camp and hiked the long way out. Almost an Epic at least for me.
Posted Sep 19, 2001 5:13 am

brandonRoute Climbed: Sargaents, Cassaval, Av Gulch, Hotlum-Bolum Date Climbed: Many times....  Sucess!


The best training mt in the States. Head up on the weekend. Go car to car twice, or summit Sat, sleep at 10 or 11, and summit again Sunday.

Summit to Lake Helen.... 17 minutes...any other fast times?
Posted Sep 18, 2001 4:30 pm

welldressedpigRoute Climbed: Avalanche Gulch Date Climbed: 5/27/01  Sucess!
My 1st 14er and it was a great time. We had planned going up Casaval Ridge but due to a lean snow year, we opted for the standard route. A great climb nonetheless and look forward to going back in the future.

Climb on!
Posted Sep 7, 2001 10:21 am

Bob BurdRoute Climbed: Avalanche Gulch Date Climbed: May 12, 2001  Sucess!

Bob Burd

Heckuva climb. Trip report here.
Posted Aug 17, 2001 2:02 pm

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