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Glacier Peak

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Glacier Peak

Postby ctsmith3243 » Thu Nov 09, 2017 2:04 pm

Looking at doing this climb with two friends this summer. We are looking at a May/June climb potentially.

I see most climbs reviewed are done in July/August. We are looking for more snow to minimize any crevasse impacts. We did Rainier in August and it was brutal due to lack of snowcover on the rocks as well.

What is the weather like on Glacier peak earlier in the season? On the summit?
Is there significant avalanche danger earlier in the year?
Should we expect snow at 6-7000' in May/June?

Any help or advice is appreciated. There doesn't seem to be a ton of info on Glacier Peak online.

Thanks!

Colin
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Re: Glacier Peak

Postby Klenke » Thu Nov 09, 2017 7:16 pm

"What is the weather like on Glacier peak earlier in the season? On the summit?"
This is the PNW. It could be lousy or it could be nice in May/June, though obviously trending toward nicer weather as summer gets closer.

"Is there significant avalanche danger earlier in the year?"
On a high peak like Glacier Peak, your winter-style of avalanche can still occur due to fresh snow on top of compacted, consolidated snow. But normally in May/June the avalanche type is sloughalanches, which can still be dangerous especially as they flow down constrictions and gullies.

"Should we expect snow at 6-7000' in May/June?"
Yes.

May and June would be an excellent time to climb Glacier Peak--especially in nice weather. People ski it too.

Paul
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Re: Glacier Peak

Postby Karl Helser » Thu Nov 09, 2017 10:22 pm

I prefer Late August, mainly because I don't ski. A very straight forward climb...but long. Very scenic!
http://karl-helser.com/glacier-peak-8-21-16/
Feel free to rip the maps and track if you plan on this approach...
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Re: Glacier Peak

Postby seano » Fri Nov 10, 2017 12:34 am

Despite its name, crevasses are pretty much a non-issue on Glacier Peak if you take the standard route. Rainier is a short walk followed by lots of glacier; Glacier is a long walk ending in a bit of trivial glacier.
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Re: Glacier Peak

Postby ctsmith3243 » Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:37 pm

Thank you for all the information!

We are probably looking at a July climb now. I'd rather deal with cold and heavier snow than crevasses so we were aiming for earlier in the year but doesn't sound like the crevasses will be too bad based on what I have read and your input.
Karl thank you for the blog- looks great. I will be sure to use this as a guide.

We hope to do this in three days which I'm sure will be tough.

Just hard to find a lot of information on this mountain online compared to other pac NW volcanoes.
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Re: Glacier Peak

Postby Klenke » Thu Nov 16, 2017 7:23 pm

Not a lot of info online for this peak? I find that hard to believe. Try nwhikers.net or cascadeclimbers.com.

The south route via White Pass is a three-day trip and is an attractive area. From the Puget Sound side you hike the N. Fork Sauk Trail to White Pass then across the slopes of White Mountain crossing the divide to the White Chuck Glacier, which has receded quite a bit from what is shown on the topo map. If you are reasonably fit you should be able to get to this basin or just before it on the first day.

You'll want a filter for water because the only nearby sources of water may be stagnant glacial melt ponds because the creeks themselves are often so laden with silt that your water bottles will have a few inches of it in the bottom after it settles out.

On Day 2 hike up to the peak and back, going around the east side of Disappointment Peak or steeply up the pumiced south slope of Disappointment Peak. I seem to recall some broken glacier skirting going around the peak. From the saddle north of Disappointment the rest of the climb will be up volcanic slopes and snowpatches. The summit has a couple of tops and some steep snow and rocks lurking about.

Day 3 hike out.
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Re: Glacier Peak

Postby ExcitableBoy » Fri Nov 17, 2017 3:01 pm

seano wrote:Despite its name, crevasses are pretty much a non-issue on Glacier Peak if you take the standard route. Rainier is a short walk followed by lots of glacier; Glacier is a long walk ending in a bit of trivial glacier.

I don't often agree with seano when it comes to glaciers, but I agree with his assessment. When I did the standard route 20 years ago in August there was only one small slot that I had to step across. The glaciers are definitely not on the scale of Rainier or Baker. Plus, late in season means blueberries will be ripe. We added wild, ripe blueberries to our granola in the morning, a nice treat.
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