so, some friends and i are going to the north side of Shasta this w/e to
the Hotlum or Chicago (possibly Wintun) glacier, ideally camping at the toe of the glacier,
and finding crevasses to throw things into for the purposes of creating
anchors and pulley systems to haul them out. our plan was to drive to the
Brewer creek TH and backpack up toward the Hotlum glacier and camp nearby.
was wondering if you could share any knowledge about the approach, and how
long it may take for slow-moderately fast backpackers (not winter
mountaineers but we'll be carrying the extra weight of clothes and
on the topo i saw there's an east-facing cul-de-sac with a
small lake near the toe of Hotlum at about 10,250 ft, just north of the
Brewer Creek drainage, which seems ideal, but i guess we want to try
camping closer to the glacier. is that feasible, in terms of drinkable/meltable
snow/ice/water and exposure to wind/weather?
also, might it make more OR less sense to camp more near the
trailhead and hike up to the glacier just on the one middle day (Sunday
of Labor Day w/e)? we'd be hauling less crap up there.
Definitely do the Hotlum because there is an amazing camp site as well as nearby ice falls should decide to play around with some vertical climbing!
Following the trail from Brewer Creek TH (or not, we decided to just head strait for the route) you will break the tree line and notice three rocky bluff type formations up the snow that are easy to point out on the map around the 10,358ft marker on the map if you have the Shasta map from 5th Season. There is an amazing camp at the foot of the glacier where Gravel Creek begins.
There are awesome flat tent platforms with wind walls around them already built probably by the Shasta guides for their glacier courses. There is running water from the glacier that become Gravel Creek so no need to melt snow!!
If you go to the Hotlum Glacier page you will see a picture of our camp that I'm describing.
You can either head all they way to the crevasses for practices or you can hit up a bergshrund like we did at a little head wall on the left (East) side of the Hotlum route.
Kenneth, I've camped on the glacial moraine of the Hotlum in late September/early October on a low snow year and there was still plenty of running water pouring off the glacier that was good for drinking.
Have fun! And throw something fun in the crevasse for me, will ya?
thanks for the advice guys! camping near the base of Hotlum looks super-easy and scenic, but it looks like we may just camp at the car after all in the interest of time (leaving the Bay after 715 or so at the earliest), unless i can coerce ppl that possibly doing the last push up to camp in the dark will be fun...