Ascent of Pinnacle Peak on 2017-06-13

Climber: Daniel Mick

Date:Tuesday, June 13, 2017
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Pinnacle Peak
    Elevation:6562 ft / 2000 m

Ascent Trip Report

Obvious TH pullout on park road.

A glorious climb that packs so much into such a short outing. Much preferred as a snow climb than a hike/rock climb. Interestingly, I did Castle-Pinnacle in 2015 just two weeks later in date (2015 Jun 27 vs 2017 Jun 13) but it was *totally* snow-free!

Two climb teams camped at Cougar Rock group camp and swapped peaks on Tue and Wed. The Tue Unicorn team had Unicorn socked-in all day and turned back. We chased the sun to the top and were eventually rewarded with summits, clearing skies, and eventual views of Rainier.

Snow from the parking lot. We hiked through overcast the whole way to the summit block, but the sun was gleaming through the whole way. Rested at central "platform" and lead up main crack just to the right. I set 5 slings and nuts including a redirect onto the summit ridge and a one around through the bundle of rappel slings. It took 2 hour for the whole team to summit and down climb (rappeling likely would have actually saved time). Not bad for 4 new BCEP grad climbers, and 1 experienced assistant!

We descended to the ridge and found the pass through the trees ~50 yards below the ridge rappel immediately below the South ridge. Do NOT take the rappel unless you want the extra practice. The path through the trees is quick and easy.

We established a traverse across the slope to Pinnacle, and enjoyed several marmots along the way! We rested and drop packs at the small tree outcrop just below the Pinnacle summit block. Quick but careful 3rd/4th class scramble to the top. Slower down-climbing. Traversed back East and took first chance in the saddle to glissade. We were likely some of the last of the season on the existing West snow bridge. It was an exciting steep glissade! We linked glissades together most of the way back to the parking lot though they got progressively shorter through the trees.

1/1 ACCESS - National Park parking lot
2/2 REMOTENESS (Popularity, Sight/Sound) - crazy busy in Summer, but mid-week Spring we saw only one other party in the range
1/1 CONDITION - wide obvious trail and tons of beta
2/3 VARIETY (Flora and Fauna, Geological, Terrain) - a little bit of everything!
3/3 VIEWS - towering Rainier and sweeping vistas
TOTAL 9/10
(does not include difficulty since hikers may prefer opposite extremes)

Ultimate OR & WA Lists: CoHP, CoPP, Top e100, Top p100
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:397 ft / 121 m
    Total Elevation Loss:397 ft / 121 m
    Round-Trip Distance:1.8 mi / 2.9 km
    Quality:9 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Open Country, Snow on Ground, Scramble, Exposed Scramble, Snow Climb
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Ski Poles
    Weather:Cool, Breezy, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:397 ft / 121 m
    Distance:0.6 mi / 1 km
    Route:Reflection Lakes
    Start Trailhead:Reflection Lakes TH  6165 ft / 1879 m
    Time:1 Hours 45 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:397 ft / 121 m
    Distance:1.2 mi / 1.9 km
    Route:Reflection Lakes
    End Trailhead:Reflection Lakes TH  6165 ft / 1879 m
    Time:2 Hours 
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Daniel Mick
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. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

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