This was the first glacier adventure for my husband and me, and it was fantastic! We started from the Bear Lake trailhead at 6am because Glacier Gorge was already full. Hiking the trail with the family, we arrived near the boulder field around 830,and my husband and I made it up to the tarn around 915. Here, we put on gaiters, crampons, and pulled out mountaineering axes to ascend the glacier. Our gear choice was perfect for the snow conditions on the glacier, as anything less could easily mean sliding down hundreds of feet into boulders on the side, or into the frigid lake. We stayed toward the south side of the glacier, finding the shallower slopes, and trying to avoid any possible cravasses. We were not roped up, since we had read crevasse danger should be minimal. It took us a little less than an hour to ascend, and the views from the divide were unimaginably gorgeous! It was secluded and away from the busy crowds on the trail below.
I recommend getting an early start, as the warming sun will make the snow slushier as the day progresses. This is a great first glacier experience!
Descended this route after hitting Taylor from Powell. Andrews Glacier makes for a good descent route off of the Glacier Gorge Traverse.
50 pounds of backpacking gear up that snowy bastard en route to Grand Lake
A fun ascent. The headwall was much steeper and allowed for a direct climb with good run out.
11/21/09 - Climbed with Haliku and another friend. The slope was wind blown and had exposed ice on the second half.
Made it up using crampons & ice axe. Found out how unfriendly the glacier can be to one's ass, on the return glissade.
Did not make it on, up, over, or through the glacier - perhaps next year
My friends and I climbed to Andrews back in 1992...one of our first alpine hikes, and we have been hooked ever since! We have a few photos and a report on our website Natural Born Hikers