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Ascent of Broken Top on 2015-08-16

Climber: Michael Wanberg

Others in Party:James R
William K
Date:Sunday, August 16, 2015
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Broken Top
    Location:USA-Oregon
    Elevation:9175 ft / 2796 m

Ascent Trip Report

The third time was the charmed one for me, of course it also helps to not attempt this in October. We hiked in Saturday afternoon and found a campsite at the northern end of the Green Lakes basin. Extra gain on ascent is primarily from a sunset hike to the saddle north of Green Lakes, where we had a grand view of the alpenglow on the northern Oregon stratovolcanoes (and Adams). We carried in light and bivied, then broke camp about 7:30 Sunday morning and made our way back to the climbers' path; we stashed our overnight gear near the junction and made our way up in great time.

It was mostly class 3 once on the ridge, with some class 4 and a very short vertical rock climb near top, 10-20' of 5.6 and then short low-5th class (~5.2) to summit. I down-climbed a chossy 5.7 with a hand-line (missed my original 'chink'), then directed William and James to a 5.7 farther north with better holds and rock.
We had the summit block entirely to ourselves for about 1.5 hours.

Distance from Green Lakes TH to Green Lakes is approx 4.3mi, and then approx 2 miles to the summit.

Like so many other Oregon peaks, the ratings/reviews for this mountain are generally sandbagged - yes it's mostly a scramble, but just because the class 5 is short (and sparse) doesn't mean it's not class 5. Bring a rope to rappel or use as a hand-line if nothing else; a fall from a slip or a loose hold coming off could easily be fatal.

Helmet recommended for loose rock (and pulling rope), even if forgoing harnesses.

30#/18#OT44,R3,1P
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:4285 ft / 1305 m
    Total Elevation Loss:4285 ft / 1305 m
    Round-Trip Distance:15.5 mi / 24.9 km
    Grade/Class:Class 5.6
    Quality:6 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Scramble, Exposed Scramble, Rock Climb
    Gear Used:
Rope, Ski Poles, Bivouac
    Nights Spent:1 nights away from roads
    Weather:Pleasant, Breezy, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:4235 ft / 1290 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 3735 ft / 1138 m; Extra: 500 ft / 152m
    Loss on way in:500 ft / 152 m
    Distance:9 mi / 14.5 km
    Route:NW Ridge
    Start Trailhead:Green Lakes TH  5440 ft / 1658 m
    Time:7 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:3785 ft / 1153 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 3735 ft / 1138 m; Extra: 50 ft / 15m
    Gain on way out:50 ft / 15 m
    Distance:6.5 mi / 10.5 km
    Route:NW Ridge
    End Trailhead:Green Lakes TH  5440 ft / 1658 m
    Time:3 Hours 



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