It was a long day
We left the car at the upper parking lot of the mt. baker ski area at 4:37 a.m. on the 24th of august, 2011. The snowpack was still incredibly high for august. We made it to the bottom of the fisher chimneys at about 9 am and started the scramble up.
We made it just below winnies slide to find a small camp set up, and continued up to find the first close-encounter of the upper curtis. It was somewhat crevassed out but the route picked its way around the steeper first slope. Once we crested over the the steep section we discovered a long lateral crevasse about 3 feet wide we were forced to jump over which added some fun and excitement.
Hell's highway was straight forward, we hung down to the left and ascended out to the left on top of the highway, upon finding a ridge and having to traverse back right to the sulfide glacier.
The Summit block was totally melted out and went as planned, although we gained the eastern ridge to the left a bit sooner than we should of and ended up making some fairly vertical moves on some good expsoure. We made the summit at 2:30
We headed down at 3:00. Hells highway was very soft and forced us to slide as a roped descent was proving to be too difficult. we crossed the upper curtis and descended the steep crevasse-laced section successfully. We approached Winnies Slide to find it in the same condition as hell's highway, so we slid down it. I sat down at the back of the rope above the roll over onto the slide while my partners (one on the slope, the other at the roll-over) began to glissade. The rope stretch with their velocity launched me over the crest of the slide extremely quickly. What a thrill! A man from NY was snapping photos (would like to see them if you happen to see this, fellow climber).
We made it to the bottom the chimney's at 8 pm as the sun was setting. This was a relief and a stress, for at least we made it off the technical before dark. However, because the trail was still so deeply covered in snow and debris it was nearly impossible to track all the way back to the car. We ended up bushwacking in the dark for about an hour and a half, periodically finding the trail and having it disappear once again.
We made it back to the car around 10:30 with a roundtrip time of 18 hours and 13 minutes!