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Ascent of Preacher Mountain on 2021-04-05

Climber: Mark Hadland

Others in Party:0
Date:Monday, April 5, 2021
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Preacher Mountain
    Location:USA-Washington
    Elevation:5924 ft / 1805 m

Ascent Trip Report

Super summit of Preacher Mountain. Conditions were perfect for an alpine summit. The trail off the Pratt River trail was steep, rooty, and muddy. Snow was persistent from 2000 feet on. The trail up through the forest was marked with a boot path from ascents on previous days and meanders in and out of tree and rock wells, brushy sections, trees, etc. so have a good route to follow up via your GPS of choice and good route finding skills. At about 3500 feet, the trail/path cuts to the left up a steep ridge up to lower Rainy Lake, which was mostly frozen over. There was a section close to the trail with a couple of logs where one could refill water bottles. This was the last available water on the trail ~3800ft. The trail then continues left, directly up the steep ridge. There were sections that were fairly steep, but good steps which were still frozen made the ascent manageable. I wore crampons from 2000 feet to the summit and back. One could wear microspikes or snowshoes, but the snow was very firm today and snowshoes would be overkill. Also, poles were sufficient, but an axe could come in handy. Once at upper Rainy Lake, the trail routes right up the ridge. We followed a path straight to the ridge and walked the length of the highly corniced summit ridge to the summit at the far southern end of the ridgeline. We took a more direct path back down to upper Rainy Lake. Be careful not to descend too far from the summit via glissade so that you overshoot the ridge and route to the upper lake.

On the way down, I was late and ended up navigating from about 2500 feet and 3 miles back in the dark. Even using Gaia and my track up, finding the way down was not trivial as it's easy to lose the trail and follow one of the many boot paths to dead ends or brushy terrain. I found looking for blowdowns which were cut to be good indicators I was on the right track and further towards the end of the trail I scouted 5 reflectors on trees which were useful and provided a sense of comfort descending in the dark (yes I had a headlamp). Needless to day the way down was rooty, muddy, and sometimes steep in the dark. I suggest avoiding staying out too late if possible, as I personally do not adhere to a turnaround time. Alpine start, alpine finish.

Stats: ~6000 feet of gain (GPS multipath issues), 16 miles, 14 hours C2C.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:5800 ft / 1767 m
    Total Elevation Loss:5800 ft / 1767 m
    Round-Trip Distance:12 mi / 19.3 km
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Mud/Swamp, Snow on Ground, Snow Climb
    Gear Used:
Crampons, Ski Poles
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:5800 ft / 1767 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 5000 ft / 1524 m; Extra: 800 ft / 243m
    Loss on way in:800 ft / 243 m
    Distance:6 mi / 9.7 km
    Route:Rainy Lake
    Start Trailhead:MF Snoqualmie Campground  924 ft / 281 m
    Time:8 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:5000 ft / 1524 m
    Distance:6 mi / 9.7 km
    Route:Rainy Lake
    End Trailhead:MF Snoqualmie Campground  924 ft / 281 m
    Time:6 Hours 
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip


 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Mark Hadland
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. Peakbagger.com accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

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