Forum Index > Trip Reports > Eagle and Chutla Peaks (MRNP) 11-16-2019
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Bluebird
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PostSun Nov 17, 2019 7:15 pm 
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Weather was not great this weekend, but it looked better south so I convinced Brian and Colin to head south for an easy day scrambling in MRNP. None of us had summited anything in the Tatoosh range; I have a failed winter Castle attempt from a couple years ago but nothing else! We wanted a conservatively short but not boring pick, so I suggested we try Eagle and Chutla. It was cold, damp and I didn't take many photos... so I'll apologize for that affront right now.

We arrived at the TH after driving across the very neat one car only bridge and started hiking on the well manicured trail just before 9am. Brian was unsuccessfully testing some new boots, so we stopped frequently for lacing adjustments, moleskin and tape. He ended up with a painful blister on one heel anyway. With all the stops, it took us just under 2 hours to reach Eagle Saddle, where we met a party of two women who had some KT tape that was better than our tape. It was very cold at the saddle, so we layered up and I put on gloves. My hands are always colder than everyone elses's. Mood bolstered by the improved tape on Brian's heel, he decided to accompany Colin and I on the Eagle scramble instead of waiting at the saddle.

Head left of the saddle to find the scramble route, which is a decent trail although you will need to climb through some trees at times. We trended right up a steep rock/tree thing and ended up at a very steep class 4/5 way up, which we knew had to be wrong. We headed left, which went downhill (never reassuring) but then lead to a reasonable looking class 3-ish route up. I lead the way up some kinda wet/icy/snowy rock that was exposed in places. One exposed move was a little tricky for me, a left foot, then a high right and a mantle up because I couldn't reach any handholds. Beyond that we continued up the ledges
descending the ledges
descending the ledges

and then left over a false summit and then a walkup to the top. We enjoyed the scramble and the summit, although now it was starting to snow lightly.

There was a solo man and a party of 3 (with a rope and everything!) behind us, since the ledges were narrow we waited for them below the false summit. The party of 3 seemed less experienced but they navigated up safely.

Next it was on to Chutla. I found a faint bootpath that lead up, exposed at times and requiring some forest/rock/root scramble. I might not have found the easiest route up, but the guys insisted on following me as I am the "most experienced" person in the party. So, ha, enjoy my route guys!

There was some snow to kick steps in on the way to the summit, which had better views of Castle, Unicorn and Wapaneyo than Eagle had, but the scramble itself was definitely less satisfying.

On the way down we met the party of 3 from the Eagle summit, they'd followed our footsteps and weren't too happy with my route down a steep rooty mini-gully. We assured them that it was a walkup beyond there and contoured along the mountain to meet the trail below Eagle Saddle before descending.

Total route about 8.75 miles, 4000 gain. A nice short day for a short fall day. I don't think this would be a great route with heavy snow cover, I'd expect some avalanche danger and cornices, especially on Chutla.
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puzzlr
Mid Fork Rocks



Joined: 13 Feb 2007
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PostSun Nov 17, 2019 8:37 pm 
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Nice report. These peaks had faded from my memory but they are two of the ones included in Peggy Goldman's Tatoosh Range Traverse in her 75 Scrambles book. Coming from the east she said of Eagle "A rocky ledge presents a challenging and exposed big step; use extreme caution. A hand line for the descent is appropriate if the rock is wet." It sounds like you found that spot, or a reasonable way nearby. The trail to the pass between Eagle and Chutla really stands out in Google Earth. I hope to do that traverse (in sections) someday.

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Mid Fork Rocks ē flickr
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neek
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PostMon Nov 18, 2019 10:18 am 
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Bluebird wrote:
My hands are always colder than everyone elses's.

You might have competition; mine turn white and numb at the slightest provocation, and covering up digits that aren't producing any heat doesn't do much.

Cool report of some peaks that weren't on my radar, thanks.
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Bluebird
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Joined: 22 Jan 2014
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PostMon Nov 18, 2019 11:38 am 
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I have Raynaud's... maybe you do too? I ended up investing in Alti-Mitts a few winters ago so I could keep my hands warmer in the winter for snowshoe backpacking. I have to prevent them from getting cold because once they get white and numb it takes a really long time for them to warm up again and it's extremely painful.
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Bluebird
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PostMon Nov 18, 2019 11:55 am 
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Thanks Puzzlr. I've had that traverse on my radar for years but never got around to any of the peaks. I figured I'd test out all the routes first before trying to go for a longer route biggrin.gif I think we were on the ledge she described, there isn't really another option to get up.
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Nancyann
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PostMon Nov 18, 2019 12:00 pm 
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Nice way to enjoy a little window of decent weather!
I have Renaudís also, as does everyone else in my immediate family. This time of year, I put two hand warmers in each mitt (Burtonís gore tex my favorite) or polarfleece fingerless gloves with a mitt cover if I want to take pictures, before I even start up the trail. I tried to skip that step a week ago up on Nason Ridge and by the time I decided to add the hand warmers, I could barely open the packages and put them in the gloves. clown.gif
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Forum Index > Trip Reports > Eagle and Chutla Peaks (MRNP) 11-16-2019
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