Mount Saint Helens Climber's Log

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pmhalley - Jun 15, 2012 2:22 am Date Climbed: Aug 24, 2009

1st Time on Helens  Sucess!

summit on day 4 after 3 day circumnavigation on Loowit trail!


MickMiller - Jun 14, 2012 7:19 pm Date Climbed: Jun 13, 2012

Worm Flows Climbing Route  Sucess!

This was my first mountain climb and we made it to the summit with a white cloud blanket a few thousand feet below! The snow really started around 4,800 ft and it was very handy to have an ice axe. All you could see from the crater rim was Mt. Rainier, Mt. Adams, and Mt. Hood poking up above the cloud cover. An amazing first climb!


cweight - May 28, 2012 10:41 pm

Underprepared for the snow in June

My wife and I attempted this climb in early June. We were traveling from Utah and didn't know the conditions. We were not prepared for snow. The last three miles of the road, leading to the trail head, were still unplowed and under slushy snow. We ended up turing back about 200 feet from the edge of the crater because of a quickly approaching storm from the south. Plus we were pretty beat trudging through snow without snow boots.


Aaron123 - May 25, 2012 2:46 am Date Climbed: Aug 13, 1997

Alone  Sucess!

Climbed it on my own. Made it on my own. First mountain summit.

Will possibly do another mountain alone. Time will tell.


beaudaddy85 - May 18, 2012 6:18 pm Date Climbed: May 7, 2012

Worm Flows  Sucess!

Snow from trailhead to summit. Awesome experience looking down into the crater. Camped at about 4,000' on a ridge along swift creek just above treeline. 4:30am start and summit around 8am. First hike of the year... Nice Place...


aaron5875 - May 16, 2012 6:09 pm Date Climbed: May 11, 2012

Beautiful Day  Sucess!

Absolutely perfect day. We left Marble Mt Sno-Park around 6AM and reached the summit a little before 11AM. A big THANKS to all the people that had kicked the beautiful steps all the way up the mountain. We never even put our crampons on. By noon, the snow was perfect for some awesome glissading; 3000 feet lost in 30 minutes! You can't beat it.


mrmaxtrax - Apr 19, 2012 1:51 am Date Climbed: May 6, 2011

worm flows  Sucess!

an overcast day, but an awesome journey


Cal - Apr 16, 2012 5:05 pm

Several times a year  Sucess!

This is a great glissade, better w/snow than w/out.

fredzurensick - Mar 4, 2012 1:37 am

Re: The day that changed everything..

this is why we love the mountains. Welcome aboard


patdarcy - Feb 21, 2012 8:30 pm Date Climbed: Jun 10, 2011

Different Experience  Sucess!

Great time and great views, albeit some ash in my mouth and all over my clothes :)


MGlasgow35 - Jan 15, 2012 2:02 am Date Climbed: Jul 1, 2011

First Mountain Climb  Sucess!

This was my wife and my (awkward grammar?) first mountain climb. We camped at Marble Mt. Snowpark and started the hike up a little before sunrise. I carried my 3 year old up in a kid carrier once he got tired... one hell of a summit pack. Low and ominous looking clouds on the way up gave way to clear sunshine at the top and a beautiful descent!


thbslawson - Oct 30, 2011 5:45 pm Date Climbed: Oct 25, 2011

Couldn't have been better  Sucess!

So this was my first real mountain to ever ascend. I'm a novice getting started later in life, but had wanted to get into hiking and climbing for some time. Growing up in the deep south, a "mountain" for me was anything over 1000 ft. Our family began working with a non-profit about 5 years ago in Portland, and since that time I've traveled to the Pacific Northwest about 3-4 times a year. Each time I went, the mountains began to tug at my heartstrings.

I'm 34 years old and have never been an extremely physically active person, but last year I managed to start hiking a bit around the Columbia River Gorge during my trips up to Portland. This transitioned into a desire to really want to challenge myself. So I determined make a climb/hike up a "real" mountain in 2011. I chose St. Helens because I wanted to start with something not too high and not technical. Since Mississippi has no mountains I began running a running program earlier this year. I completed a "Couch 2 5k" program, which then became a 10k and then a 15k. By the time this summer rolled around and I began planning my next trip up to Portland I felt confident that I'd be able to make it to the summit of St. Helens.

October 25th was an amazingly clear day! Having bought my plane tickets up to Portland for meetings six weeks in advance, and having "gambled" on the 25th to be my climb day, I was extremely blessed.

I started my day very early because I wanted to get back to Portland in time to rest before the next day's early flight home. I picked up my pass at 6AM and headed for Climbers Bivouac. The hike through the woods up to timberline seemed to pass very quickly. It was a cold, quiet morning and I just took the time to enjoy the peace and solitude of the day.

I think the thing that caught me off guard was the challenge of Monitor Ridge. It wasn't the climbing, or the ascending but the constant scurrying over boulders, being extra careful not to twist ankles, cut myself or fall and break something. While not a technical climb, it was definitely challenging. When I cleared the boulder field, I assumed the hard part was over. Then I learned about scree!

I'm not exactly sure if everything I climbed through was technically "scree" or not, but it seemed to fit the description that someone told me about. Whatever the stuff is called, for about the last 1000-1300 feet I experienced first-hand the "two-steps-forward-one-step-back" scenario that friends had warned me about. Couple this with the fact that for the first time in my life I was experiencing higher altitude than I had ever really been exposed to. I began to notice at around 7,200 ft that I was having to breath a lot harder and my body felt a little more tired. I know this is nothing for the pros out there, but it was new to me.

The last 500 ft. were hard, I'll admit, but I was very motivated by several people who were descending the summit, raving about the "amazing view".

The summit was indeed amazing! It was truly like nothing I had ever seen before. From the top it was almost crystal clear in every direction. Rainier and Adams almost looked as if I could reach out and touch them. Off in the distance I could clearly see Hood, Jefferson and South Sister. I spent about 20 minutes at the top before descending. It was cold enough and windy enough that staying too much longer would have been a bit uncomfortable.

I'll be honest and say that coming down was more challenging than going up. I had managed to ascend without so much as anything even remotely resembling a stumble. But within my first 10 minutes of descending in the ashy-rocky mixture I managed to land on my backside at least 7 or 8 times. It took some time, but I finally got my legs under me and learned to control myself a little better.

Timberline never looked so good once I finally reached it. But the real and final relief didn't come until I reached the parking lot. For some strange reason the 2 miles from Timberline back to the parking lot seemed much longer on the way back =). An even more beautiful sight was the "Burgerville" just before I got onto I-5. Well placed!

For me this was a personal victory. The motivation to climb got me off of my duff, caused me to lose 25 pounds and drove me to do something I'd never done before. I'm now running on average 25 miles per week and am already starting to plan my next climb/hike. My hope is to do South Sister and Adams in 2012 and then shoot for Hood probably in 2013. I'd eventually like to move toward some more technical climbs. Our family is looking to move to Portland probably in the next 6-7 months, so I hope to be more involved in these kinds of activities.

I hope I haven't sounded like I'm bragging. I'm just a novice at this. But I hope I can encourage anyone out there who's wanting to get up and get active and that it can be done.


nicozone - Oct 25, 2011 11:36 pm Date Climbed: Oct 15, 2011

Last Climbers of the Day  Sucess!

We were originally planning on camping along the trail so that a friend of ours could take his time and make the summit (this was his first attempt at an actual "mountain"), but he had to drop out at the first boulder field. We left him to prepare camp while we gambled at a chance to make the summit before it got dark. We made the summit at 4:30pm and saw the sun go down as we hiked back to camp. Amazing weekend trip!

Ted Eliason

Ted Eliason - Oct 12, 2011 12:21 pm Date Climbed: Aug 15, 1995

Blowing Grit in your eyes  Sucess!

The only right way to do this one is on firm snowpack. Hell of a view from the crater, though.


MMclimbhigh - Oct 7, 2011 2:15 am

Several Times  Sucess!

Ski the corn and you will live happy


relic - Sep 18, 2011 1:28 pm Date Climbed: May 1, 2002

Years ago  Sucess!

Date is a guess. Been kicking myself ever since for not taking the skis on this one.


TyC - Sep 9, 2011 3:24 am Date Climbed: Sep 8, 2011

Large Crowds  Sucess!

Weather was suppose to be over 90° but instead it sprinkled for a few minutes and was cloud for more of the day. Seems like the wild fires were making visibility down to one mile. Other than the huge crowds and the lack of long distance views of other mountain the day still turned out to be great.

Athena - Aug 26, 2011 2:03 pm Date Climbed: Aug 23, 2011

Yay!  Sucess!

Tiring and exhilarating! Glad I did it. My first climb.


greglief - Aug 18, 2011 2:27 pm Date Climbed: Aug 16, 2011

Second time!  Sucess!

Monitor Ridge is a pain, but it didn't get the best of me. Clear day... awesome views up and down the Cascade Range.


xpda - Aug 10, 2011 7:00 pm Date Climbed: Sep 20, 2007

A Volcano  Sucess!

My baby daughter Melinda left her camera on the wrong setting. Now we can climb it again.

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