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Forum Index -> Trip Reports -> Enchantments/ Argonaut Peak
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Jeff R
Closet hiker.



Joined: 10 Apr 2005
Posts: 970 | TRs | Pics
Location: In the 80's dude!
Post Sun May 07, 2006 2:20 pm    Enchantments/ Argonaut Peak
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Argonaut Peak.

Elevation-8,453' the 62nd highest peak in Washington.

Stats-12 miles round trip, gain- 5000'+

Route- NorthEast Gully

Gear used- Crampons, helmets, pickets and 50 meter rope. snowshoes not needed.

Party- Stefan F, Mike C, Greg K, Dave C, and Myself.

At this time, road #7601 ( access for Colchuck and Stuart lake) can be driven almost to the trail head parking area . A foot of snow over the road stopped all cars 1/8 mile before the trail head sign. The trail to Colchuck lake has been well travelled and is nicely packed down. We walked this with out snowshoes or problems to and past the junction at 2 1/2 miles. At the junction we took the Right fork towards Stuart lake, passing 3 large flat marshy areas going over a couple snow bridges and crossing Mountaineer creek on a log. About a mile from the fork in the trail, we trended to our left keeping the East fork of Mountaineer creek on our right while travelling in a SouthEast direction through open forest staying level at 4600' for some time. After the level section, we started to gain some elevation finally emerging from the trees. Once we were out in the open,  we were able to see Sherpa peak to our Right, with Colchuck peak on our Left, and Argonaut peak standing front and center, offering us a full view of our route up the NE couloir.

At the base of the couloir, we strapped on our crampons, pulled our ice axes out, and donned our helmets. The angle was a constant 45/ 50 degrees for more than a 1000' of gain, which offered perfect snow for kicking steps with only a couple icy spots that needed to be negoicated. 
At the top of the couloir, we turned Right and climbed up a snow gully that covered a 5.6 graded rock climb that has belay/ rappel stations.

Exiting the gully we side hilled the steep North slope staying below some ridge points to a small notch before the final summit block.
After the minor notch, the top was now in sight and boy did it look sweet! With a couple easy scramble moves the route went through a tunnel then turned back on it self finishing with a rock step to arrive at the top about 6 hours from the cars.
Here is where we all soaked in the views, took pictures, ate, rested, and signed into the Mountaineers summit register.


We had summited just in time because the weather that had been quite pleasant for our ascent was starting to quickly deteriorate, and with it brought a howling cold wind.

We decided for two running belays down and across the North slope followed by a hand line assist in the gully back to the main couloir. Down climbing the couloir to the exit at its base we all took a final break and packed away our gear. Now the snow had softened substantially and we happily descended 2000' with a sitting glissade to the level area in the woods.
A weary 2 hour march brought us back to the cars by 8:00 p.m, ending the day  roughly more than 12 hours car to car.


Jeff R 5/6/06

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wildernessed
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Joined: 31 Oct 2004
Posts: 7138 | TRs | Pics
Location: Wenatchee
Post Sun May 07, 2006 3:04 pm   
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up.gif  up.gif , Strong work everyone, I am always wondering what your up to hmmm.gif , great reading and pics. hockeygrin.gif
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Edd
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Joined: 23 Jun 2003
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Post Sun May 07, 2006 4:17 pm   
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Thanks Jeff. Nice pics, I really like the one looking down on the north slope. up.gif
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l
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Post Sun May 07, 2006 4:45 pm   
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Love the perspective of 'North Slope'. Man, you guys are hard core.
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dicey
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Joined: 11 May 2004
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Location: giving cornices a wider berth
Post Sun May 07, 2006 9:21 pm   
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Nice!   up.gif

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I'm not always sure I like being older but being less stupid has advantages.
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Dayhike Mike
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Joined: 02 Mar 2003
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Location: Going to Tukwila
Post Sun May 07, 2006 11:15 pm   
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Nice pics! Looks like you guys had a great time!

Can you upload a larger version of the one showing the route up?

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"There is only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take the consequences." -P.J. O'Rourke
"Ignorance is natural. Stupidity takes commitment." -Solomon Short
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Tom
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Joined: 15 Dec 2001
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Post Sun May 07, 2006 11:28 pm   
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Dayhike Mike wrote:
Can you upload a larger version of the one showing the route up?

Click on the "view larger size" link.  doh.gif

Nice shots Jeff.  I concur with Ed - nice capture of light and shadow in the pic looking down on the north slope.
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Dayhike Mike
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Joined: 02 Mar 2003
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Location: Going to Tukwila
Post Sun May 07, 2006 11:57 pm   
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AHHH...

doh.gif

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"There is only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take the consequences." -P.J. O'Rourke
"Ignorance is natural. Stupidity takes commitment." -Solomon Short
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ActionBetty
Im a dirty hippie!



Joined: 06 Jul 2003
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Location: kennewick, wa
Post Mon May 08, 2006 8:30 am   
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Sweet!
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Stefan
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Post Mon May 08, 2006 8:45 am   
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thanks for doing the trip report Jeff!

Anyway,  instead of downclimbing that gulley....I would recommend you rappel over towards Colchuk and traverse over to Colchuk col.  Downclimbing takes too long!

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Jeff R
Closet hiker.



Joined: 10 Apr 2005
Posts: 970 | TRs | Pics
Location: In the 80's dude!
Post Mon May 08, 2006 2:14 pm   
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Everyone, thanks for your positive comments!

"Downclimbing  takes too long!"

I agree. Unfortunately, the snow conditions in the gully were not conducive for a stylish standing glissade.

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kycooyo
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Joined: 07 Mar 2006
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Post Mon May 08, 2006 3:28 pm   
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Awesome TR and quite and achievement I must say!  eek.gif

Just wondering, did you happen to snag any pictures of the Ingalls Creek valley from up there? I'm considering doing an overnight there in a couple of weeks... just wanted to see what the snow is like. Thanks.
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Jeff R
Closet hiker.



Joined: 10 Apr 2005
Posts: 970 | TRs | Pics
Location: In the 80's dude!
Post Mon May 08, 2006 4:00 pm   
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kycooyo,

Sorry, I did not take any pictures South of the peak. My only excuse was that any taken would have been washed out since it would be facing the sun. But, regarding a snow conditions/ beta stand point, I should have and will in the future.

Beverly/turnpike and Longs pass are still very snowy. If you start the trail from Highway 97, you should be able to go quite far up the valley.

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ShawnAintny
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Location: East Side, Greenacres
Post Mon May 08, 2006 8:21 pm   
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Wow!  I want to be you when I grow up!  You guys really live!
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