Ascent of Big Snow Mountain on 2017-07-02

Climber: Bent Wiencke

Date:Sunday, July 2, 2017
Ascent Type:Unsuccessful - Turned Back
Peak:Big Snow Mountain
    Elevation:6131 ft / 1868 m

Ascent Trip Report

We decided to climb Big Snow in a day by biking the 8 miles in (16 miles RT) on the old forest service road. Expecting it to be a long day we were prepared to hike out and bike back in the dark using our headlamps. However, soon after we start hiking the unmaintained trail leading to Hardscrabble Lakes we came to realize that his is not a trail we had any strong desire to navigate in the dark using our headlamps. The trail was very overgrown and at times seemed to go in several different directions. Traversing the boulder field before and at the lower lake was also time consuming. The boot path from the lower to upper lake was a nice change as it was easy to follow. In contrast to the lower lake, the upper lake provided several flat camp sites. Leaving the upper lake we had to navigate around a cliff and get on top of it using veggie belays. When we finally arrived at the bottom of the gully leading to the saddle we realized the snow was already gone in most places. We finally reached the saddle around 2:30 PM and discussed our options. Reaching the summit would probably take us another 1.5 hours plus time hanging out there. Descending the gully would be slow as most of the snow was gone. This would put us at risk hiking out in the dark and possibly having to bivy. Our pets were home alone and we had to make it home that night. Consequently, we decided to climb nearby Hardscrabble Dome and call it a day.

Although, it was a big bummer we didn’t summit, it was still worth the trip. The area is absolutely stunning and has a North Cascade feel to it. We definitely want to come back and finish it.
Summary Total Data
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Bushwhack, Stream Ford, Snow on Ground, Scramble, Snow Climb
    Gear Used:
Bicycle, Ice Axe, Crampons, Ski Poles
Ascent Part of Trip: Big Snow

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Peak 61312017-07-02 
2(Attempt) Big Snow Mountain2017-07-02 
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Bent Wiencke
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.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

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