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Forum Index -> Trip Reports -> Buckhorn Mtn 12/5/09
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raising3hikers
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Joined: 21 Sep 2007
Posts: 1412 | TRs | Pics
Location: Edmonds, Wa
Post Sat Dec 05, 2009 7:21 pm    Buckhorn Mtn 12/5/09
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After seeing the Olympic Mountains across the sound all week, I knew I had to make a trip over there with the nice weather we have been having.  I was hoping that I could drive all the way to the Big Quilcene trailhead since it's on the Eastern side of the Olys , which is considered a part of the rain shadow area.

I took the first ferry out of Edmonds and drove in the dark to the lightly snowed parking lot at the trailhead.  It was 7:45 when I started down the cold icy trail.  There wasn't much snow accumuilation through the forest but there was a lot of icy spots and a few icy waterfalls.


I didn't put my snowshoes on until I reached about 5000'.  This is when I entered the avy slopes from Buckhorn and Iron Mountains.  The snow was solid and my snowshoes have some good traction, so they worked pretty good.  I brought my crampons also, but never needed to use them.  I thought about heading straight up the slope to the mountain but thought that it would be a better idea to go the long way.

The sky was blue and the air was crisp and clear!  This was going to be a good day.


I made my way to Marmot Pass and this is where the wind started to make an already cold day bitterly cold.  I mean really cold!


I noticed that my water bottle was freezing and I had ice floating in it.  I kept moving toward the ridge and then I had to take my snowshoes off because the wind had blown the ridge almost completely snow free.  As I gained more elevation, the wind became stronger.  But I knew I was almost there.  The cascade volcanoes started popping up to the east.  Glacier Peak, then Rainier, Baker and then Saint Helens.


The wind was so strong that it almost knocked me over.  Did I mention that it was cold.  I finally made the summit at 11:00 and saw many peaks in the Olympic Range- Constance, Deception, Fricaba, Mystery and many others.


I quickly headed down to get out of the wind.  I couldn't help but stare at the other peaks and come up with ideas for future trips.  I really want to do more hiking in the Olympics this coming year.  As I went back down toward camp Mystery, I saw two other snowshoers who were looking to set up a tent and camp in this cold weather.  They are pretty brave and I hope they stay warm tonight.


On the way back, I noticed the Big Quilcene river a bit more and took a few pics of the little waterfalls.


I reached the truck at 1:00 to see a few bicylist enjoying the nice day.  They out numbered the hikers today.  It was a good trip by myself to enjoy the freedom of adventure and the solitude of the empty wilderness.

13.25 miles and 4500' elevation gain in 5:15

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bobbi
stillaGUAMish



Joined: 13 Jul 2006
Posts: 7113 | TRs | Pics
Location: olympics!
Post Sat Dec 05, 2009 7:46 pm   
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WOW!  what a fantastic day!  i was actually shivering when i was reading your TR.   you sure had a great day to spot so many peaks and mountains!  the olympics are so beautiful up.gif

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bobbi ૐ

"Today is your day!  Your mountain is waiting.  So…get on your way!" - Oh, the Places You’ll Go! By Dr. Seuss
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crabio
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Joined: 07 Nov 2007
Posts: 324 | TRs | Pics
Location: Bremerton, WA.
Post Sat Dec 05, 2009 10:54 pm   
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I love Buckhorn Mountain ... The last time I was sitting on the summit of Buckhorn it was 85 degrees ! What a contrast !
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puzzlr
Mid Fork Rocks



Joined: 13 Feb 2007
Posts: 4451 | TRs | Pics
Location: Stuck in the middle
Post Sat Dec 05, 2009 11:07 pm   
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Encouraging that this can be done as a day trip from this side of the sound. What kind of head gear did you use to keep out the cold?
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goats gone wild
Mr. Goat



Joined: 19 Aug 2007
Posts: 2526 | TRs | Pics
Location: Vampireville
Post Sat Dec 05, 2009 11:17 pm   
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What a great TR.  You made good time to the summit.   up.gif  Hearing about the wind and the cold, sheesh, only a manly man could hike in those conditions.  Not a girly man.   hockeygrin.gif

Oly's snowy summits and blue sky are sure beautiful.  I'm glad you got to enjoy your day out, rth.

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.....leaving me wanting to return over and over in what ever capacity that may be, even if one day my knees are too old and I can only see the mountains from my porch.

Jason Hummel
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ADrewzki
Snow angels are hot



Joined: 27 Apr 2007
Posts: 190 | TRs | Pics
Location: Silverdale
Post Sat Dec 05, 2009 11:45 pm   
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Awesome job! Looks freezing up there! (no pun intended) And you move quick!
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silence
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Joined: 25 Apr 2005
Posts: 3805 | TRs | Pics

Post Sun Dec 06, 2009 12:17 pm   
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well done .. way to stick to it (hehe no pun intended) .. but was there ever any doubt??  biggrin.gif

your pix rock too .. btw did you get a new camera?? .. as it seems the last couple of trips show marked improvement in the resolution ...

this one has me dreamin of good times past and future


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PHOTOS: https://www.flickr.com/photos/33792231@N00/sets
FILMMAKING: http://www.crestpictures.com/

Keep a good head and always carry a light bulb. – Bob Dylan
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Olympic Hiker
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Joined: 19 Oct 2009
Posts: 206 | TRs | Pics

Post Sun Dec 06, 2009 2:13 pm   
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Most excellent!

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If you once forfeit the confidence of your fellow citizens, you can never regain their respect and esteem. - Lincoln
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Hikingqueen
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Joined: 12 Nov 2007
Posts: 2785 | TRs | Pics

Post Sun Dec 06, 2009 3:52 pm   
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SO Beautiful! I love the "solitude of empty wilderness"..You picked a great day!  hockeygrin.gif
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EastKing
Summit Addict



Joined: 28 Mar 2007
Posts: 2014 | TRs | Pics
Location: 40 hours week work; 40 hours summit
Post Sun Dec 06, 2009 5:13 pm   
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This mountain has been on the back of my mind for a long time.

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I am addicted to summits! I can't eat, drink or breath without them. Life without mountains would really suck.

http://www.myspace.com/climbandsurfmackg | http://www.summitpost.org/user_page.php?user_id=894
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raising3hikers
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Joined: 21 Sep 2007
Posts: 1412 | TRs | Pics
Location: Edmonds, Wa
Post Mon Dec 07, 2009 7:14 pm   
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puzzlr wrote-What kind of head gear did you use to keep out the cold?

Unfortunately, only my hat and the hood from my coat.  I had to pull it to the side to shield as much of the wind away from my face as I could.  I was willing to deal with the conditions because I knew I wouldn't be up there for too long.  I realized at the ridge that I should get something for future trips in those extremely cold and windy situations.

silence wrote-btw did you get a new camera??

Not yet but I've been thinking about it.  It usually takes me awhile to decide exactly what I want.



Also, I'll say one more thing about how cold it was.  The moisture evaporating from my body was caught by my outer shell.  It turned to little flakes of ice that fell down my sleeves as I moved.  It didn't fall out because it was trapped in between the layer of my breathable shell.  I had a bit of ice inside my coat by the cuffs by the time I got back to the forest.  I did have extra clothes but decided to stay warm by moving fast.
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