AFter the weekends forecast it looked that possibly a small weather window would open Sat nite/Sun morning. Met Ivan up at the gate on the way up to Cloud Cap. Lower gate is still locked so we had to add some extra mileage to the trip.
Raining at the trailhead, rained all the way up to the spur. NO wind, clearing up top by late afternoon. With the calmness of the weather we decided to hump all the way just below Tie-In rock. Snow turned to fresh windblown powder by 8000 ft, a few inches. Set up the tent and started melting water. Lower Cooper Spur(steep face) looked a bit windloaded set we set the tent off to the side, safer but shitty sleeping arrangement. I guess when your partner is 7'6" it's expected.
Up at 5:45, some clouds and obvious wind up high. Started up to see how conditions fared. Deep snow, a bit of avy danger still so we stayed on the ridge of the spur(super exposed) where the snow was bit scoured.By the time we reached the upper spur the clouds/white-out came. Stuck with it as routefinding is really straight forward. Without the exposure over the Elliot Glacier the route seemed a bit tame, not too steep, good styro snow to kick steps. Summited in 2 1/2 hours and couldn't see a thing so headed down after some water. Downclimbed the Spur in the white-out, not exactly a fun time. Easy to back step down facing the slope until the angle eased. Problem was no visablity and not totally sure where the drop offs are. Altimeter helped us find the tent in about 90 minutes from leaving the summit. Packed up and headed back down the spur still in the whiteout. Eventually broke out into rain and we death marched to the car in under 3 hours. Would love the try the route again in better visablity. Snow conditons where a bit windloaded but excellent step kicking.
Gear notes: snowshoes on the approach, crampons, helmte, ice axe and 2nd tool.
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