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Ascent of Mount Hood on 2017-03-31

Climber: Michael Wanberg

Others in Party:Jeremy B
Ben R
Gerard S (no summit)
Date:Friday, March 31, 2017
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Mount Hood
    Location:USA-Oregon
    Elevation:11239 ft / 3425 m

Ascent Trip Report

First time using the skis on a summit attempt.

Departed lot about 2:10a

Four of us skinned up to the top of Palmer, where all but Jeremy left skis/board. On the way up to Silcox there were a few patchy re-freeze sections that were challenging but nothing too bad. One scoured ice stretch shortly after Silcox had me questioning the wisdom of skinning, but once above that it was relatively smooth work up to the top of Palmer. The Palmer lift-house was completely buried (they would start excavating it that day), so we left our gear nestled in against the double-tower.

On the climb above Palmer I was glad to have left the skis below. Jeremy was able to navigate the ice-scour ok, but it would have been too much for my fourth time on skins. He left his skis about 9200' and had a good ski down.

Gerard dropped out at about 9500' due to malfunctioning crampons, which was a bummer. The rest of us continued on, although I think we were all feeling pretty slow at this point. It was clear it was the first big climb of the season for us.

We stowed a couple poles at Devil's Kitchen, then proceeded to climb up the wind-blown Hogsback. The wind (eddy winds coming from the south in the crater) was filling in the footsteps within minutes.
Aside from a few eddy-gusts near the top of the Triangle Morraine the winds were calm/light for the whole climb, which was wonderful (and unusual): the mountain was blocking the moderate winds from the north.

The Hogsback was formed up about the same east/west location as it was in 2016, although the north side of it is much steeper (starts climbing farther north than 2016). This meant that the transition from the spine of the Hogsback over to the base of the Gates was significantly more challenging than in 2016. I was very thankful for good snow conditions. The climb up through the left gate was uneventful and we finished the summit bowl quickly before sitting on top for nearly an hour. It was completely calm and just about freezing - although it felt much warmer in the glorious sunshine.

Views were clear except for low clouds to the west. We could easily make out what we thought to be Diamond peak to the south and west of the Sisters.

No harness/ropes/pro for this climb with an experienced crew.

27#BDR45,G3Sp170,ScL,BDRP,PzQ
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:5289 ft / 1612 m
    Total Elevation Loss:5289 ft / 1612 m
    Round-Trip Distance:6 mi / 9.7 km
    Grade/Class:Class 4 (snow)
    Quality:6 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Open Country, Snow on Ground, Snow Climb
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Crampons, Skis, Ski Poles
    Weather:Cold, Breezy, Clear
perfect
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:5289 ft / 1612 m
    Distance:3 mi / 4.8 km
    Route:South - Pearly Gates (left)
    Start Trailhead:Timberline TH  5950 ft / 1813 m
    Time:7 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:5289 ft / 1612 m
    Distance:3 mi / 4.8 km
    Route:South - Pearly Gates Left
    End Trailhead:Timberline TH  5950 ft / 1813 m
    Time:3 Hours 



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