5 miles of hiking • 3750' elevation gain •
Simon and I put in a hard days work of breaking trail in unforgiving conditions. We went up the winter route to the west ridge. This was my first time ascending this route, I have come down it before in the dark under a full moon. It was straight forward, however we had to battle some nasty slide alder that needed about another 2 - 3 feet of snow to bury it for the winter. The creek crossings were spicy due to the lack of snow as well and don't even get me started on the booty traps in the boulder field. All in all though the weather was amazing and there was a nice inversion layer going on. As we got closer to the summit, I almost felt like busting out my beach towel and flip flops. Felt great to be out and pushing myself hard again. The back issues I had over the summer were pretty much non existent, but I was sure sore when we got down.