Ascent of Strawberry Mountain on 2010-04-18

Climber: Eric Noel

Others in Party:Ken Jones
Date:Sunday, April 18, 2010
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Hi-Clearance Vehicle
Peak:Strawberry Mountain
    Elevation:5739 ft / 1749 m

Ascent Trip Report

This is an alternate route and would only be recommended in winter or spring. In summer or fall it is just easier to take the trail. From FS 25, we turned off onto FS 2513. Hiked this until snow at 3000'. You can only get as far as 3360' where the culvert has been ripped at a creek crossing thus making the road totally impassible. We walked the slightly overgrown road to 3600'. From here we headed up more or less due W. The first 400 feet or so were a little bit thin snow and a few downed logs here and there. No brush but still not the fastest conditions. Above 4000' this is extremely wide open pleasant forest and great snow travel terrain. We hit the ridge and then followed the rolling ridge for a while as the trees opened up. At this point, avalanche assessment will come into play as you assess the open sun-drenched slopes for safety considerations. The ridge steepens at 5100' but we were more or less able to stay on the ridge or slightly left for the next 500 vertical or so. Here you start to see some rock outcrops and it gets steeper for the final push. It's not sketchy but with real soft powder the going was slow on this day. We stayed underneath the first non-ridgeline rock fin and continued low until just below the summit where snow ramps left of rocks led us to the top. Top is very easy to tell and with a register in nearby cairn. The roadwalk was tedious and the bit of trees at the beginning of the off-trail was not as nice as the later travel but overall this is a nice snowshoe and a decent route. Especially if there is fairly solid snowcover down to the road apex or lower.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2939 ft / 895 m
    Extra Gain:100 ft / 30 m
    Round-Trip Distance:8 mi / 12.9 km
    Route:East Ridge
    Trailhead:FS 2513  3000 ft / 914 m
    Grade/Class:Class 1
    Quality:6 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Open Country, Snow on Ground, Snow Climb
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Ski Poles, Snowshoes
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Clear

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