Forum Index > Trip Reports > Pitcher Mountain MRNP 100
 Reply to topic
Previous :: Next Topic
Author Message
zeldathewelder
Member
Member


Joined: 30 Jun 2021
Posts: 12 | TRs | Pics
Location: Renton, WA, USA
zeldathewelder
Member
PostMon Mar 18, 2024 2:37 pm 
On a day guaranteed to be very warm and with beautiful blue sky, we packed ďthe kitchen sinkĒ and headed out. The road is not yet melted out to Coplay Lake turnoff, but in my 4Runner, we had no problem driving there, using 4-Low drive. We began at about 8 AM, walked up to the start of the route, down to the first stream, then donned snowshoes. Having just attempted this same trip last week, we made quick work of the route to the base of the ridge. Transitioning from the alder, across the stream, John inadvertently grabbed a dead devilís club, receiving the long-lasting results. Into the trees, this week the snow was already slushy before 9 am. Trying to snowshoe up the inside of a Slushy, we gave up and switched axes and microspikes for two of us and crampons for the third. This was an improvement, but knee deep, we were definitely getting a workout. At the first ridge, into the saddle, we paused for a break and to make our plan. John noticed a game camera on the tree right where we were standing! We waved and said hello. Our plan was to go for the gulley route on the way up, and if that was too sketchy, continue north along the contours to catch Andrew Hallís route up the north flank. We switched to crampons all around. John, having been up the gulley before, said that with snow, it is a huge improvement over late spring. In May, they were ascending tree roots and wet rock. This time we were able to 3 points of contact scramble up the snow and rock and trees to the upper ridge. We then worked our way east, staying to the north side of the rocks, ascending finally, a north facing gulley of perfect kick-step snow, getting our hopes up for easy travel. Alas, we were back into the Slushy too soon, but- on this gorgeous day, we were getting peek-a-boo views of Rainier. The last bit of snow-rock-veggie scramble and we were on the summit at 12:55. Some feet higher now, loaded with snow. Caught at first by our almost 360-degree view on such a glorious day, we took photos, pulled out the map and compared our view with features we knew. We lingered for a good 45 minutes. Travis was not interested in descending the crux gulley and I wanted to discover how Andrew Hallís route would be as an alternative. John agreed to our plan. Back down through the slush we started. Even John, at 6 feet tall, was plunging deep into the snow. Travis and I were at times waist deep. But the route went well! Meeting at the 5200 ft contour, we veered southwest to meet back up with the saddle. Up and over to descend, the snow by this time was awful. Snowshoes, spikes, crampons, we all slid and slipped and got caught and got back up, many times. Honestly, what a relief to be back in the alder! Now, we stepped back into snowshoes, passed by the old, dilapidated cabin one last time. On our way out, we commented how the marsh was beginning to emerge from the melting snow. Back at the 4Runner at 4:45, we were thrilled to know that Pitcher is done- for John, twice now!

​It's an exploration, rather than an expectation of you today- body, breath, emotion and thought.

Nancyann, jaysway, day_hike_mike, Bronco, SeanSullivan86, Now I Fly, John Mac, MangyMarmot, flatsqwerl, RichP, awilsondc
Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
flatsqwerl
Member
Member


Joined: 23 Feb 2010
Posts: 1049 | TRs | Pics
Location: tacoma
flatsqwerl
Member
PostWed Mar 20, 2024 6:42 pm 
Cool little peak. I did this from Surprise lake and Carbon ridge a few years ago. Carbon ridge was scenic. Nice report!

zeldathewelder
Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
ZenithZephyr
Member
Member


Joined: 05 Feb 2024
Posts: 10 | TRs | Pics
ZenithZephyr
Member
PostWed Mar 20, 2024 9:30 pm 
It seems like a day full of adventure and many challenges, with beautiful scenes to see. The friendship and strong will of everyone in the group are clear in each part of the trip.

zeldathewelder
Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
   All times are GMT - 8 Hours
 Reply to topic
Forum Index > Trip Reports > Pitcher Mountain MRNP 100
  Happy Birthday Lead Dog, dzane, The Lead Dog, Krummholz!
Jump to:   
Search this topic:

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum