Forum Index > Trip Reports > Reynolds Peak, 05/01/2020
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RynoA
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PostWed May 20, 2020 3:33 pm 
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Apologies for the three week delay in posting a TR...

Stats: 13 miles, 5,600' cumulative gain.

End of report.

I kid...   banana.gif

On Friday, May 1st, I ventured back into the the Lake Chelan-Sawtooth Wilderness to knock off the last of my Bulger/T100 peaks in the area, Reynolds Peak.


I had attempted Reynolds the year prior (almost to the day), but was thwarted with two compatriots by slush, sun, and slides.

First, the road was clear of snow to the TH and there were no blockades, signs, or other indications of closure to the TH. I had brought my bike in the case that the road was closed to vehicular traffic with trails still being "open." Thankfully, it stayed in the car.

At 0500, I left the car up the Reynolds Creek Trail. I was able to follow the trail (or variant thereof) for 85-90% of the distance to the creek crossing, snow began in earnest roughly 100-150 vertical feet below the crossing. Much of said snow was firm enough to keep the trail runners on until nearer the edge of the creek.

Once the snow began intermittently, I saw evidence of tracks; I wasn't the first to be here! Although they were some days old.

The year prior we crossed on a great tree, but I didn't find the same one, so I wound up crossing on a hodgepodge of trees and snow that I was hesitant to trust. I then ascended steeply for a few hundred vertical before the more gradual terrain began.

Soon enough the basin opened up and I was at the base of the SE face. I now regretted (slightly) waking up 45 minutes later than planned as the sun was already blasting the snow.


Alas, there was, again, the debris of Avalanches all around in the middle of the basin. Luckily, there were less slide prone areas in addition to the upper slopes looking much thinner (a result of the slides). This is where I noticed that the former tracks stopped. I later discovered that a group was there 3 days prior (I think) and they turned around near 6,300' on the SE face.


The route was simply from the base of the SE face to the summit pyramid: up.


I was actually surprised at how steep it was at times, still below the summit pyramid.


The last 100' below the summit pyramid were steep with snow that was extremely soft. I treaded lightly to not get too close to the cornices to climber's right.


Once at the ridge crest, I began up a knife's edge of snow (I saw no mention of this on Reynolds!). It was great fun with awesome exposure on both sides.

Just below the summit I encountered a section of what I'd typically call Class 4, without the snow. However, it was now some mixed climbing; always a treat in crampons...

After that it was predominantly easy walking to the summit. I wasn't able to find a register (if there is one) since I didn't care to rummage around in the snow on the summit. The winds were nill and the sun was warm! Perfect weather.


Summit pano

I retraced my steps on the way down, carefully so on the mixed section. I made it back to my snowshoes at the base of the SE face and meandered my way out. I did find a great log to cross the creek on the way back.


Video along the knife edge section, below the Class 4 scramble.

Route from the creek crossing to the summit. Nothing special, typical route. The red line is my route from last year.
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awilsondc
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PostWed May 20, 2020 5:17 pm 
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Nice work!  Looks spicy in a couple sections.  I love that first shot and your panorama.  Great views from up there!   up.gif  up.gif
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neek
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PostThu May 21, 2020 6:19 am 
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Very different from what we found June 1 last year.  But we hooked around further S and approached the summit from the SE for gentler slopes.  The creek crossing was nothing.  With more snow this year and a colder May, I wonder what it will be like in a week--in particular, if there will still be slide potential with things finally warming up.  BTW your video just appears as a picture.
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RichP
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PostThu May 21, 2020 6:21 am 
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Haven't heard from you in a while. Welcome back.
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Jake Robinson
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PostThu May 21, 2020 8:31 am 
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Good to see you here again! I hope you continue to write up your trips here, you've got some epic stuff in the works  up.gif

Reynolds was a memorable trip for me for a few reasons. ozzy and I did it a few years ago in July, before Reynolds Creek burned, and it was kind of a misadventure. The trail was overgrown from the start and it had rained the night before...needless to say, we were soaked within 5 minutes of leaving the car (I probably needed the shower anyways  lol.gif ). We took a funky route on the ascent, instead of following the standard SF of Reynolds Creek, we headed up into the NE cirque. This required us to kick steps up a steep snow gully with thin snow at the top in order to gain the E Ridge. The summit had the biggest swarm of "summit ladybugs" I've ever seen. Not wanting to go back down the way we came up, we descended the standard route, but got off-route near timberline and had about 20 minutes of thick schwacking on a steep headwall (I think it's the one under avy debris in one of your photos). Once below treeline we took a suboptimal route through the creek which was pretty consistent brush down to the creek crossing. To add insult to injury, I fell in the creek when we were crossing. Good times, still better than not being in the mountains though!
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rbuzby
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PostThu May 21, 2020 8:42 am 
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I like Reynolds. Nice trip and pics.

You must feel pretty sad about missing out on all the benefits one reaps by signing the register.  I guess you can always climb it again.
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