Ascent of Gannett Peak on 2018-08-24

Climber: Rick Peterson

Date:Friday, August 24, 2018
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:4x4 Vehicle
Peak:Gannett Peak
    Elevation:13804 ft / 4207 m

Ascent Trip Report

We hired Bald Mountain Outfitters to take our stuff to just past Island Lake. Unfortunately the last week before they called and said they couldn't take us due to manpower shortage. This was bad news with my Uncle Ken recovering from both cancer treatment and a foot injury. We were already committed to the time so we decided to give it a try without horse support. We stopped by the outfitters in Pinedale as they suggested on Sunday to see if anything changed. What we found out is that they could take our stuff Tuesday not Monday which could cut our trip short a day. What we decided to do was to take light overnight packs in on Monday to the Island Lake area and have them bring our stuff Tuesday. While inconvenient this ended up working out and we climbed Fremont on Tuesday while our stuff was being ferried in. They will only bring the gear to a lake just above Island Lake where the trail to Indian Basin splits off. They call the drop off a signboard bringing to mind a large info stand but it is just a typical wooden slab on a pole pointing the way. There are some campsites very near this sign above the medium sized lake below but some people received citations for camping there as they are very close to the creek. Fortunately since those were filled we had crossed the stream and went to a spot by a sand of trees a ways downstream and far enough from water to be legal. Other than our poor choice of tent location in a small depression that any Oregonian should know not to use this was an excellent base camp logistically. We did have a rough night with flooding the one night it rained but that was our fault. Years in California have made me lackadaisical and Ken warned me, wouldn't you know since he still lived in Creswell.

Ken did not feel up to climbing Fremont on Tuesday so Dave and I climbed it while the remainder of the gear arrived mid-day. When we got down the stuff had arrived so everything was shaping up. After the rainstorm that night we got up to a drier morning and dried out our stuff for the hike up to the head of Titcomb basin. We camped at an ideal location just past a large house sized boulder looking up at Dinwoody Pass. We were up at 2 then a 3am start up the pass in the morning. Progress went well up this tedious slog by headlamp and then down the other side. While Ken seemed to fair reasonably well over Dinwoody as we were crossing the glaciers he began to doubt his energy since Gannett loomed large at this point. He decided to turn back and Dave and I continued.

We followed the well chronicled route from this point. When you turn the corner to head up to the Gooseneck you can go onto the rock ridge if you like that is how we descended. There were NOLS groups just ahead coming from Glacier Trail so the steps in the snow made it easy if moderately scary. The bergschrund is pretty big on the climbers right. We did not protect since the snow was in good shape with bucket steps but we did use rope, axe, and crampons. The climb to the top is straightforward from above the couloir and easy to follow.

When we came down there was a rap station on skier's left which we used. This may not be the best way since the 60M rope did not reach the next one above the 'schrund and I had to down climb a little in the moat. Then the next rap over the lip is quite exciting going over the overhang and I thought Dave had gotten something stuck in his rap device which would have been a big problem but it worked out. I think if I did it again I would set up a rap on skier's right.

At that point we went back the way we came just using the rock instead of the steep snow and back to camp while still light thankfully.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:7424 ft / 2262 m
    Extra Gain:1500 ft / 457 m
    Round-Trip Distance:40 mi / 64.4 km
    Route:Dinwoody Pass/Gooseneck
    Trailhead:Elkhart  9380 ft / 2859 m
    Grade/Class:Class 4
    Quality:8 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Snow on Ground, Scramble, Exposed Scramble, Snow Climb, Glacier Climb, Ice Climb
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Crampons, Rope, Tent Camp
    Weather:Cool, Calm, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Time:15 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Time:15 Hours 

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