Author lee coutermarsh
Date December 01, 2002
Owned By climbing
Mountain Elevation Summitted
Beautifull late fall weather got me and brett up for an early start for a climb on the tooth. I had recently purchased some new cams (thanks Dave B.) and was itching to try em out.
Arrived at the snow lake TH at 7:30 and only one other car there. Could it be possible we would be the only ones on the tooth? Started heading up quickly as it was quite chilly and I think the temp was in the upper 20's. The trail is in great shape and no snow so me made quick time. Jumped off the trail at the head of the basin to contour around and up towards pineapple pass. This is where it started getting interesting as the long boulder field hike was very frosty and extremely slick. However, we survived with just minor flop's.
Reaching pineapple pass we broke out into the sun and crystal clear sky's. The warm sun made it feel much warmer than it actually was. And an added bonus the south facing route was now being heated up so climbing in gloves would not be required, sweeeeetttt. And at this point another party of 2 arrived and known as Dave and Mike.
We swung leads using my rack and new cams,yippee for the first 2 pitches and low 5th class climbing. Then the 3rd pitch we shortened the rope and simul-climbed to the base of the last pitch and the catwalk. It was brett's turn to lead and he took the catwalk option, but noted that there was not many options for pro. He ended up putting one piece in but going up around the corner to the summit his piece came tumbling back down the rope to me. Hmm well I guess I won't worry about cleaning that piece hehe. Now on top rope and nothing to clean I headed up the face and from the last time I climbed here an enjoyable I would guess 5.3 climb.
Now on the summit the visibility was unreal in every direction. Stuart was most impressive. But then again we realized it was December 1rst and most of the peaks were quite barren of snow. And here we were basking in the sun with just long shirts on and no cold weather clothing.
But one thing that doesn't change and that is it still get's dark early so we packed up and joined up with the other climbing party (Dave and Mike) and used each other's rope's to make the rappel down go fast. Set up my rope and they went first then while we were cleaning the first rappel they were setting up there rope for the next etc... untill the last pitch where we tied the 2 together as they only had a 50 meter and a bit short to make it to the deck.
The hike back out back on the frost covered boulder field was again interesting. And getting back to the snow lake trail hordes of people were starting to arrive for an afternoon hike.
So if you want to get out for a climb, this is a good time for the tooth. Very few people, nice weather etc... Also should note for you ice climber's out there we noticed alot of ice forming on the waterfall's. Still a bit thin but building up.