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Author Topic: June 11, Washington Pass "Birthday Tour"  (Read 1634 times)

Posts: 32

June 11, Washington Pass "Birthday Tour"
« on: 06/13/06, 12:47 PM »

We our wet gear into the car at the trailhead for Snowking Mountain on Saturday and drove east to Washington Pass in the hopes that the weather would be drier.  More importantly, we had to hit the brewpub in Winthrop.

After a rainy night of car camping, we drove up to the Blue Lake TH to in mostly sunny conditions, pulled out our wet gear, and started booting up towards the corniced col.  Our sunny weather quickly degraded into a pouring rain and hail storm with lightning strikes all around us as huge black clouds poured in from the north.  Soaking wet, we were resigned to a quick return to the car from tree line, but continued on when it appeared that we had a larger-than-usual sucker hole.  By the time we reached the top of the col the weather was great over the immediate Washington Pass area.  We were hooked and had a great descent into the drainage to the south.

There is still one continuous thread of snow to the low point of the traverse, if you stay far right after the first big bench.  This we did not see until we looked back.  We had one short third-class scramble to reach the lower snowfield.

We charged up to the col that drops you over into Early the Winters Cr drainage, constantly looking back over our shoulders for more of those black clouds in the north.  The weather just kept getting better, and our ski down to the hairpin turn was excellent.

This tour is melting out.  I recommend getting in a run in the next week or two.
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