Forum Index > Trip Reports > East and West Fury  8/3-8/5 2019
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raising3hikers
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PostTue Aug 06, 2019 11:35 am 
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East Fury 8280'+
West Fury 8280'+  (believed to be higher by a couple of feet)

West and East Fury from the Southern Pickets July 2017
West and East Fury from the Southern Pickets July 2017

day 1 Big Beaver to Luna col, Jake climbs Luna


Jake R and I headed out for a trip into the Pickets for a shot at the very remote Fury Pks.  We took the water taxi to Big Beaver and were hiking along the very nice forest of Big Beaver creek by 830am.  Shortly after we started, we startled a cinnamon colored bear.  It ran uphill a short ways and stopped and stared at us until we left.  As we hiked the trail, small openings in the forest allowed us to look up to Stetattle Ridge and Elephant Butte.  We pasted the Luna Camp and in another mile, took off towards Big Beaver creek to find a way across to gain Access Creek.  A short bushwhack and we found a couple logs spanning the cold looking creek.  On the other side, were two guys coming back from a Pickets traverse.  It was nice to cross and not get the feet wet.

Some more bushwhacking and I realized we were on the S side of Access creek.  It enters Big Beaver further N than it shows on the map.  Anyways, we found a place to cross and were now on the N side where we hoped to find the faint path that I'd seen on previous trips.  Eventually, we found the path and tried to stay on it, it was much more defined for the last mile to the 3900' Access Creek crossing by the boulder field.

After some big boulder hopping, we loaded up on water and headed up to the Luna notch.  We ran into a couple parties coming down along the way.  At the notch, all the gain and tedious travel became worth it with the views over to the Southern Pickets.

Elephant, Hippo and Rhino Buttes
Elephant, Hippo and Rhino Buttes

We traversed over towards Luna col and ran into another party coming down.  Luna is becoming quite the popular place!  We loaded up on water again before the last couple hundred feet to Luna col.  We would set up camp with plenty of time for Jake to go up and climb Luna Pk.

Luna Pk
Luna Pk

It got cold quickly as the sun dipped down to the west.

sunsetting
sunsetting
East Fury
East Fury

day2 Luna col to East and West Fury, return to Luna col


We got an early start on Sunday and were hiking by 530am towards the Furies.  First off, was the first of many ups and downs, rocky outcrops and towers along the rugged ridge.  We found a red ledge that almost appeared to have been blasted to make a sidewalk for easier passage on the N side of the first obstacle.  It was nice, easy almost delightful walking for a short bit after that until we reached the next area to slow us down.  A narrow, steep grey ramp on the South side lead us down to a loose chossy gully to some snow to get us to the next tower.

another tower to get over
another tower to get over

We climbed up the ridge and a couple low 5th class moves got us up past the rock.  More downward hiking lead us over towards the basin that would take us to the East Fury glacier.  More loose rocks and talus were traveled upon as we filled up on water before finding a key ledge around ~6800'  We then had to drop down under 6600' to gain the glacier.

southern Pickets
southern Pickets
Outrigger and the East Fury glacier
Outrigger and the East Fury glacier
flowers and glacier
flowers and glacier

We headed up on good snow but then entered an area where we didn't want to stay for too long.  Crevasses and an ice fall needed to be navigated to get back to better snow.  We were soon able to get to the far East side of the glacier but knew we would want to find a better way down.  We reached the upper glacier (7800') and traversed West to find the best slopes up to the East Fury summit.

glacier
glacier
West Fury
West Fury
final push to East Fury
final push to East Fury
Southern Pickets
Southern Pickets
low Goodell Creek valley and high pks
low Goodell Creek valley and high pks

We stashed our overnight gear with the thought that we'd bivy here after we go to West Fury.  The descent down to the East/West col had tons of loose rocks along the way.  It was slow travel trying to not knock anything loose.  At the col, we dropped down 100'-150' and found some small, blocky but solid ledges to avoid the roped pitch at the col.  We traversed around Tower 1 and had another one in the way.  On the second tower, a 4th class zig zag ledge lead us near the top with a short traverse on the North side to get past.  Then, a very steep chimney/dike had to be descended but it had good holds on both sides.  Near the bottom, we went left and had to scramble some steep slabs to get back right and to the next col.

Jake heading down from the East/West col to our scramble ledge
Jake heading down from the East/West col to our scramble ledge
looking back at tower 1
looking back at tower 1
looking back at tower 2
looking back at tower 2

The 3rd tower would require a short low 5th move (5.2) that we soloed up.  From there, it was more 3rd and 4th class scrambling to the remote summit of West Fury.  The views were as good as expected and we signed in the original register from 1958.  We were the 21st party to sign in and the 2nd this year.  Another group was here just a week and a half before.

down to the Luna creek cirque
down to the Luna creek cirque
Luna to East Fury
Luna to East Fury
Crooked Thumb and Challenger
Crooked Thumb and Challenger
West Fury register
West Fury register
a familiar name
a familiar name

Out of the 21 parties, 5 were by Roger Jung (all solo) and 2 by Tom S.  The register papers are little brittle so we carefully took pictures of the pages and put it tightly back in the brass container. We made 2 rappels, on tower 3 and tower 1.  The tower 1 rappel was a bit exciting as it's vertical for a little while.  It took almost as long to get back to East Fury and to took to get to West Fury.

Jake rappelling the 3rd tower
Jake rappelling the 3rd tower
Southern Pickets over Picket pass
Southern Pickets over Picket pass
Jake on the standard type of terrain we encountered
Jake on the standard type of terrain we encountered

Since, we didn't like our bivy options back at East Fury, we decided to head back to Luna col.  We had plenty of daylight left to make it happen and it would also mean that we could exit on day 3.  It was a lot of work to get back to the col 14 hrs after we had left it.

Jake heading down off of East Fury
Jake heading down off of East Fury
down climbing the steep snow
down climbing the steep snow

day 3 Luna col to the Ross lake TH highway 20


We got packed up and moving a little after 7am with the hopes of hiking all the way back to the car.  We made better decisions on the Access Creek descent by staying higher once we lost the climbers path.  Once we hit the NE rib, we headed down and ran into the group that left Luna col a bit earlier than us.  We picked a better way to cross Access Creek again and got right to the log crossing and on the Big Beaver trail at 11am.  From there, it was another 18 miles or so back to highway 20.  It was tiring and uneventful except for a mosquito was taking a ride in my eye for about 8 miles until I could get it out.  There's not a lot of water between Big Beaver and the dam.  It was hot but we made it back to the car at 5pm.

We had some long days on loose ground but the views made up for it.  Much thanks to Jake for coming along on this adventure.  Fay and Tom's TR helped as well as Lemke's TR.  No matter what beta you get, it's a whole lotta work to get these pks.

46.5 miles
13500' elevation gain
3 days

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Eric Eames
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iron
getting old



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getting old
PostTue Aug 06, 2019 12:01 pm 
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nice. been waiting to see this one. have fun on the tongue. maybe take HW with you???

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man, you go through life, you try to be nice to people, you struggle to resist the urge to punch 'em in the face, and for what?

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Jake Robinson
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PostTue Aug 06, 2019 12:04 pm 
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Thanks for having me along for the ride Eric. It was one of the toughest and most rewarding trips I've done, I will never forget it. Fury feels pretty far out there...

Day 1: Approach and Luna
On the water taxi
On the water taxi
Luna above Access Creek
Luna above Access Creek
Eric climbing garbage on Luna
Eric climbing garbage on Luna
Elephant Butte, Hippo, Rhino
Elephant Butte, Hippo, Rhino
Traverse to the true summit of Luna
Traverse to the true summit of Luna
Many familiar names in the Luna register (it's very full)
Many familiar names in the Luna register (it's very full)
The view from Luna
The view from Luna
The Southern Pickets
The Southern Pickets
Sunset over Challenger
Sunset over Challenger
East Fury to Challenger
East Fury to Challenger

Day 2: East and West Fury
The ledge from Luna Col
The ledge from Luna Col
Ridge traverse to East Fury
Ridge traverse to East Fury
a steep move en route to E Fury
a steep move en route to E Fury
Trying to keep up with Eric
Trying to keep up with Eric
Extremely loose boulders on the descent from East Fury
Extremely loose boulders on the descent from East Fury
The final scramble to West Fury
The final scramble to West Fury
Eric on West Fury. 199/200!
Eric on West Fury. 199/200!
Lots of loose rock getting back to East Fury
Lots of loose rock getting back to East Fury
Eric on some nasty stuff
Eric on some nasty stuff
Working the ledges
Working the ledges
Eric rappelling tower 1
Eric rappelling tower 1
Eric celebrating
Eric celebrating
E Fury snow arete
E Fury snow arete
Almost to Luna Col...cliffed out again
Almost to Luna Col...cliffed out again

Day 3: The slog home
Sunrise from bivy
Sunrise from bivy
Tedious descent from Luna Col
Tedious descent from Luna Col
Big Beaver crossing
Big Beaver crossing
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Stefan
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PostTue Aug 06, 2019 12:10 pm 
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Great on you two!!! Love the pictures!!

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Art is an adventure.
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cascadetraverser
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PostTue Aug 06, 2019 12:18 pm 
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Awesome guys!!! Well done....looks like a hard won trip through paradise.
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RichP
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PostTue Aug 06, 2019 12:38 pm 
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Incredible country. Lucky you's to be able to visit.

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Without obsession, life is nothing. John Waters
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iron
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PostTue Aug 06, 2019 10:26 pm 
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man, i'm awestruck by how little snow there is out there. those poor glaciers are going to be totally hammered this year. i hope it's an early winter...

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man, you go through life, you try to be nice to people, you struggle to resist the urge to punch 'em in the face, and for what?

--- moe sizlack
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awilsondc
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PostWed Aug 07, 2019 7:37 pm 
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Incredible trip you guys... Thanks for taking us along.  Not many get to set foot on West Fury.  Very cool.  Those are my favorite kind of summits.  Great photos too!   up.gif  up.gif  up.gif
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JasonG
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PostWed Aug 07, 2019 7:48 pm 
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You guys are ridiculous.  Three days to West Fury and back??!!  Well done, my knees are sore just thinking about it.

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<><
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Michael Lewis
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PostWed Aug 07, 2019 8:51 pm 
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Those are above my current skill but on my radar. Cool looking linkup. How much is the watertaxi?
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freddyfredpants
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PostWed Aug 07, 2019 10:47 pm 
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Baller. Way to get after it!
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raising3hikers
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PostThu Aug 08, 2019 5:40 pm 
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Michael Lewis wrote:
How much is the watertaxi?

it was $75 to big beaver, much more than a couple years ago.  it was nice to take it on the way in but not knowing what time or day we'd be back for a pick up, we decided to hike all the way out and save the extra money

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Eric Eames
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trent
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PostFri Aug 09, 2019 7:33 am 
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JasonG wrote:
You guys are ridiculous.  Three days to West Fury and back??!!

My thoughts exactly! Especially without the water taxi on the way back!
Nice work getting er' done in syle!

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It's all downhill from here!
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Gimpilator
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PostFri Aug 09, 2019 7:38 am 
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Awesome trip guys.  A friend of mine was back in there at the same time as you and planned for all three peaks but only managed two of them.  You guys are super strong, but that goes without saying.   dizzy.gif

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Keep climbing mountains and don't slip!
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