Forum Index > Trip Reports > 2014-05-06 Freedom Peak (via south ridge)
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Bryan K
Shameless Peakbagger



Joined: 29 Sep 2005
Posts: 5065 | TRs
Location: Headed west soon
Bryan K
Shameless Peakbagger
PostWed May 07, 2014 8:06 am 
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Full set of photos are here.

This peak has been an orphan for me for many years and the time came to finally deal with it. I'd seen recent reports of people heading up to this peak and I decided that I wanted to take a different route. After consulting a map the night before I thought I'd give the south ridge from the trailhead a try. It looked simple and straightforward on the map.

Route Map for Freedom Peak
Route Map for Freedom Peak

The first few hundred feet of gain was through recent logging area but wasn't actually too bad. Fortunately they removed almost everything they cut. One of the things that I've always liked about the Teanaway is that there's typically a bit of space between the trees and that makes off trail travel much easier. Heading up this ridge didn't disappoint.

Beginnings of the ridge ascent
Beginnings of the ridge ascent
Early morning on the ridge
Early morning on the ridge

Heading up there were a few small spots to scramble up before Pt 5018.
The morning sun made the scenery beautiful and the views were great!

Early views
Early views

As I traversed the ridge to the north there were more sections of rock that were either easy to go around or go over. I opted to go over as much of it as I could.
Rocky ridge
Rocky ridge
Fun ridge ahead!
Fun ridge ahead!

The nice part about this ridge traverse is that it trends up hill almost the whole way. Not a lot of ups and downs that seem to plague most long ridges.
Earl Peak in the middle
Earl Peak in the middle
Knife edge ridge
Knife edge ridge
Looking back at the knife edge section
Looking back at the knife edge section

The traverse was a lot of fun and offered a few good challenges along the way.
Another steep section to traverse
Another steep section to traverse
Keep going
Keep going

One part I ended up getting cliffed out and had to backtrack a few hundred yards and drop down and go around.
The section I opted to backtrack away from
The section I opted to backtrack away from

Thanks to a hard freeze overnight, the snow along the route was very firm and crusty. Sometimes too firm though.
With the harder sections behind me, it was a simple traverse along the ridge to the summit.

Simple from here
Simple from here

Cornices were showing signs of wanting to let go and plunge down the side of the mountain and I gave them a wide berth.

Notice the stress cracks on the cornices? I stayed far below them
Notice the stress cracks on the cornices? I stayed far below them
Nasty looking stuff
Nasty looking stuff

Almost four hours after I left the car I was on the summit and enjoying the views.

Navaho Peak in the distance
Navaho Peak in the distance
Another one
Another one
Me on Freedom with Navaho and Stuart beyond
Me on Freedom with Navaho and Stuart beyond
Cornices, give 'em a lot of room
Cornices, give 'em a lot of room

After some time on the summit I headed back down to the Stafford Creek Trail via an avalanche gully. Having had 2 spine surgeries I opted to not glissade some of the not-so steep sections even though I really wanted to and it would have saved some time and walking.
At the bottom of the avi gully there was total carnage from this years dumping of snow.

Avalanche debris path
Avalanche debris path
Avalanche carnage
Avalanche carnage

It sure would have been awesome to have watched some of the avi's come down!!!
Finally back on the trail I enjoyed some new flowers along the way and made good time getting back to my car.

Glacier Lilly
Glacier Lilly
Stafford Creek
Stafford Creek

It was a great day to get out and I am happy to no longer have this orphan out there :-)

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www.youtube.com/bkraai | www.flickr.com/photos/bkraai/sets/
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Pef
Member
Member


Joined: 13 Oct 2005
Posts: 129 | TRs
Location: Redmond WA
Pef
Member
PostWed May 07, 2014 12:21 pm 
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Nice work up.gif, I have been on that ridge a couple of times and always wondered if you could run it all the way back to the TH.

Looks like you drove all the way to the TH, is the Stafford Creek road as bad as ever?
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Bryan K
Shameless Peakbagger



Joined: 29 Sep 2005
Posts: 5065 | TRs
Location: Headed west soon
Bryan K
Shameless Peakbagger
PostWed May 07, 2014 2:50 pm 
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The road isn't too bad.

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www.youtube.com/bkraai | www.flickr.com/photos/bkraai/sets/
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zephyr
aka friendly hiker



Joined: 21 Jun 2009
Posts: 1584 | TRs
Location: West Seattle
zephyr
aka friendly hiker
PostWed May 07, 2014 3:10 pm 
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Great work, Bryan.  You're an animal.  up.gif

A lot of work that would be a longer day for many of us.    ~z
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wildernessed
viewbagger



Joined: 31 Oct 2004
Posts: 8922 | TRs
Location: Wenatchee
wildernessed
viewbagger
PostWed May 07, 2014 6:30 pm 
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up.gif Nice !

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Living in the Anthropocene
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puzzlr
Mid Fork Rocks



Joined: 13 Feb 2007
Posts: 6164 | TRs
Location: Stuck in the middle
puzzlr
Mid Fork Rocks
PostThu May 08, 2014 11:37 am 
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Really nice route - it's the kind that makes the Teanaway so special. I think I'll follow your lead someday.

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Mid Fork Rocks flickr
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