My dog Poudre and I didn’t make it to the summit. We made it to the saddle between Static Peak and Nokhu Crags and then I decided to turn around. The climb up to the saddle wasn’t fun at all. The bottom third was a miserable slog up very fine, loose scree and dirt. After this portion we reached some more solid rock, but even that was crumbling and falling apart. With every step I had to check each hand and foothold to make sure it wouldn't dislodge. This especially sucked for me because Poudre insisted on following me and I had to be super careful not to knock anything down on him. One softball-sized rock could have easily put him out of commission, or possibly kill him.
When we made it to the saddle my nerves were shot. If I’d been without the dog and had somebody with me to encourage/shame me I could have made it to the summit. As it was I was happy to get back down. The descent sucked just as much as the ascent because Poudre wasn’t very good at down climbing. I had to down climb 6’, pick him up and set him at my feet, and then down climb 6’ etc most of the way down the more solid rock part. Once we made it down to the scree portion of the climb Poudre found a snowfield and quickly mastered the doggie glissade. He splayed his rear legs out perpendicular to his body, dragged hit butt in the snow, and steered with his front paws. It was hilarious to watch and he had a blast. It was a lot better than slogging down the scree. I’d never done a glissade and I didn’t have anything to help arrest my descent down the snowfield so I had to be very careful. I gave it a shot and was careful to keep my speed low and glissaded down about 200’. A couple of times I had to dig my fingers into the snow to slow myself so when I got done my fingers were pretty sore.
We made our way back around Snow Lake and descended to our camp near the upper American Lake. I spent the rest of the day fishing with great success.