The Calvin Expedition successfully summited at about 11:30 AM. Beautiful day.
Bryant Wright, my high school cross country and track coach in 1993-1995, came out for a visit and we attempted a summit of McLoughlin.
Lots of snow but we left the trail and stayed on the mostly snow-free ridge the mail trail more or less follows. Made it about 100m from the summit before encountering a significant snow field. Our ascent ended there as we had no ice axes or traction.
Beautiful clear day with great views!
My intention was to do Mt. Shasta, but through the night at Bunny Flat, snowmobilers tore through past all hours. At 2 a.m. I realized I would not be able to climb responsibly and got a few more hours' sleep before heading back north.
This was a suitable alternative on the way home! Snow was quite punchy so care was required to avoid postholing. Additionally, once it was consistently snow with no breaks, the trail was more difficult to identify, so for much of it I just estimated the route and headed straight uphill. (Identifying the return route was not difficult as I merely followed my ogre-sized bootprints. In any case I had map and compass for backup and Gaia for backup to that.)
Once out of the trees I more frequently opted for scrambling the boulders on the ridgeline in order to avoid postholing on punchy snow around unseen rocks. (Not to mention I had neither ice axe nor crampons and thus was unequipped for the need to self-arrest, however unlikely). In many spots I identified thin snowpack with as much as 4-5 feet of melted-out space underneath, so if you choose to stay on the snow, watch it up there.
The final 200 vertical feet required kicking steps into the snow at any rate, and the going was pretty easy given the soft snow.
Because I had come from Shasta and took a diversion through Lava Beds, it was a late start from which I was able to watch the sunset begin from the summit. I'd come prepared to finish in the dark, though I did aim to make it back down to the trees by dark. I still managed to get back to the vehicle and over to Medford in plenty of time for some post-scramble In-n-Out at any rate.
My 2nd solo trip up McLoughlin, a great hike. Beautiful summit with fantastic views.
Hiked it with some of my Southern Oregon Masters Aquatics swim friends on a beautiful and warm fall day.
Run from the base to the summit with two friends. Not a terrible climb, first few miles are mild and runnable until nearly treeline, then a scramble the rest of the way with some bouldering and scree at a pretty consistent pitch. Summit has excellent views of all surrounding mountains, including the Mountain Lakes and Sky Lakes wilderness. Early October can be hit or miss as far as the first snowfall goes, so we were fortunate that it was clear on the day we climbed.
Way less snow than this time last year. Made navigating easier. The north bowls were still in, but too steep for me, but I still got about 500' of turns on the south side of the ridge.
Camped in the parking lot dirtbag style, i don't believe that even a rec pass is required util June, started at 5am and made summit before 8:30am. Snow is very scarce, there are wet and sloshy patches before exiting the tree line but aim for the south east ridge and you'll be ok where you cant see the trail. Windy up top and snow was slushy with warm temperatures. Save for some post holing as you exit the tree line, conditions are pretty good for a hike or a run.
South Slope Route 3-10-17
There was bad weather for weeks in WA so Heather and I drove through OR, CA, NV, UT, and ID. We climbed 37 peaks in 19 days. I soloed McLoughlin on the second morning and we hiked up Mount Eddy later that afternoon. Some snow on the route required the use of micro-spikes. trip report
Rico and I went up the normal route ... his second ascent and my fourth. We were well coated in DEET and sunscreen, neither of which worked well enough for the conditions.
There was snow starting around 6000 feet and we lasted real quickly. Navigated by combination of seeing the mountain through the trees and staying on the ridge as much as possible, and a couple of cell phones with enough battery. We were prepared for a strenuous hike but not a snow climber climb it to turned out to be. We kept moving forward testing out the terrain and eventually after a long six hours made it to the top. The top was a bit of a knife edged ridge this year. Was a much more strenuous but also more satisfying hike than anticipated. :-)
Fun hike & light scramble up top. A handful of other folks out there, including some sort of youth mountaineer group.
Really enjoyable hike. Had good views of Shasta, but all the volcanoes North were in the clouds.
It was the first mountain I hit on my trip and by far the toughest on the trip. Very hot day. I went through 5 liters of water and Gatorade.
It's a very steep trail, especially the last 0.7 miles which gains over 1,200 feet along a knife-edge ridge. The route I chose along the north side of the ridge was extremely loose. I suppose you might avoid the loose trail by hopping from boulder to boulder along the top of the ridge, but I'm not sure if that would be better/faster/safer.
Trail in good condition and well marked.
Snow was continuous from below treeline. That was a bit surprising. In spite of that got 6 out 7 to top; including 3 teenage girls in tennis shoes. Started at 7:30 and reached summit at 1:00. Left Eric on ridge and he started back on his own, but got lost where the trail is hard to follow amongst patches of snow. Sheriff's SAR team found him at 7:30 p.m. well on his way to Four Mile Lake. It was a great day, a great climb, and no one had to spend the night in the woods.
Tackled this one this weekend using the main trail after climbing Yamsay Mountain on Saturday.
Amazingly fun dayhike, as you start out in the pine forest at trailhead-level, move eventually into switchbacking among boulders with great views of the nearby lakes, and then suddenly are on a ridge that's more like some alpine scramble in the coastal Cascades than something you'd expect to find 30 minutes from Klamath Falls.
The ridge had a fair amount of snow on it, just enough to make climbing slippery but not enough to cover the rocks along the ridgeline. If you're ascending in snow, I'd recommend staying on the north side of the ridge as much as possible; I stayed to the south and kept having to regain altitude I'd lost without really realizing it. On the way back down, it was more visually clear that the north side was much easier and more gradual.
The summit proper was two small snow mounds joined by a skinny snow bridge that was iced over. Having cached my crampons below on the advice of a fellow climber I'd spoken to earlier in the day, I just tagged the summit and scrambled back down before I slid off. Looking forward to going back either more prepared or in better weather, though. This mountain is a gem, and probably my favorite dayhike I've ever done.
Route sticks right along ridge of the mountain, like climbing a dragon's spine. Last mile or so offers some fun choices and chance to use your hands. A wonderful area worthy of more exploration.
We stayed at the Lake of the Woods resort cabins, a little pricy but a great place to relax less than five miles from trail head.