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Stefan
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Joined: 17 Dec 2001
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Stefan
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PostFri Mar 29, 2002 12:01 pm 
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The planets were aligned.  The moon was at the apex of its bustness.  The weather forecast seemed optimistic.  The wife and babe were away.  So, what to do between getting off of work at 4:30 p.m. and starting work at 8:00 a.m. the next day?  You go climb a peak!

Pilar met me at my work at 4:30 where we proceeded to Crystal Mountain ski resort and left the cars at 6:30 p.m. for a climb of Silver King.  We went up the ski runs in the light and soon encountered clouds and some darkness as we ascended the skierless runs on the packed snow.  About 1.5 hours later we arrived at the bathrooms at the end of the Silver Queen(?) chairlift where we stayed for about 20 minutes enjoying the heater and a decent rest!  If only climbing was like this all the time!

We put on our headlamps but due to the moon and luminescence off of the clouds they really were not needed-so in effect the headlamps were on us, but not being used.  We proceeded up the Campbell basin surprising to not find many ski tracks, but we made the ascent without problems only to find the main tracks for the skiers were at the top of the ridge.  When we reached the top of the ridge, the moon came away from the clouds and was shining brightly-Mt. Rainier had a massive cloudcap on it.  This was a really cool scene.

We traversed the ridge staying on the ski tracks and this went really well-exceptionally well.  In fact there is a packed trail all the way to the summit of Silver King from many users so snowshoes were never needed once on this entire trip!  We did have to use our headlamps when we entered the trees following the ski packed trail a couple of times but for the majority of time it was a surreal feeling climbing this peak under moonlight conditions.  We summitted sometime before 9:00 p.m.

We made our way back to the Campbell basin, went directly down and out via a different ski run.  About halfway down the clouds in the valley dissipated and we were treated to a bright moonwalk all the way back to the car at 10:00 p.m.

Stefan Feller
3/28/02
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Forum Index > Trip Reports > Silver King - Crystal Mountain, WA (3/28/02)
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