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| | |-+  June 24, 2006 Chinook Pass
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Author Topic: June 24, 2006 Chinook Pass  (Read 1822 times)

Posts: 31

June 24, 2006 Chinook Pass
« on: 06/24/06, 10:37 AM »

With the pending heat wave I decided to head out to Chinook Pass at 4 a.m. to try and beat the sun.  I parked at the very damp Tipsoo lot and headed up Naches Peak, making the false summit around 7 a.m.  By this time the sun was already roasting the easterly aspects quite intensely.

The skin up was a mixture of fairly firm and quite mushy snow.  Also, coverage is pretty poor on the ridge I used to gain access and about the last 400 vertical feet require booting.  It is possible to make the false summit without booting...but requires traversing some pretty steep faces.

After a quick meal I readied for the descent.  Being alone, uncomfortable with how soft the snow was on the eastern slope, and realizing that the temperatures were rising quickly I decided to descend the west face back into Tipsoo Lake.  With some ridge skiing and a pretty sketchy traverse I made it to the bowl directly under Naches proper. 

...all that greeted me were large suncups and variable snow conditions.  It was a bumpy ride.  On the short traverse back tot he highway I could hear, and see, rock fall on the sunny aspects.

The weather was awesome if you weren't skiing, and during the entire trip I got to hear the hordes of Harleys enjoying the sunny mountain roads.  I think it's time to get on my bike.
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