We went out for a day hike up Big Craggy and West Craggy out of the Copper Glance Lake TH. The trail was in pretty good condition up most of the way to the meadow where we gained the South ridge - per the Beckey description.This area is amazing - it is awesome how quickly you can get up into the alpine and really see the Cascades from the trail.
It was a particularly windy day and we could see the top of Big Craggy was in the clouds. We continued our way up the south ridge line, trying to stay in the snow as the whole mountain itself is pretty loose rock.
We made it to the top, or at least what we thought was the top, as the conditions were terrible and we couldn’t tell which spot was the highest… turns out we were in the right spot. Took a couple quick photos and headed down towards the big saddle between Big Craggy and West Craggy.
Thankfully, we found a protected spot away from the wind near the saddle where we could discuss the possibility of going up West Craggy. As we were breaking the clouds started lifting and we were able to see the top of West Craggy, so we decided to continue our journey.
Conditions change quickly out there.
We stayed along the ridge line, scurried up a gully and curled around to the southwest side of the peak in order to ascent the mellow slope to the top. While we were on top the sun came out a little and the breeze calmed down a bit. We were rewarded with great views and the first signature in the summit register for the year - though we were likely not the first this year to climb West Craggy - just the first to find the register under all of the snow.
We started our journey down by just dropping right off of the ridge into the west drainage where the Copper Glance Creek drainage begins. After some sketchy-ish and slow plunge stepping in snow were able to slide down to the start of the Copper Glance creek. We most likely would not descend this way again….most likely not the safest, but we had an adventure.
Then, we joined up with the trail where it crosses the creek and walked that all the way back down to the car. Great day!
It was obvious that the trail past the creek towards Copper Glance Lake still has many blowdowns and snow covering it.
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