Ascent of Mount Saint Helens on 2013-03-23
|Others in Party:||Jeremy B|
|Date:||Saturday, March 23, 2013|
|Ascent Type:||Successful Summit Attained|
|Peak:||Mount Saint Helens|
| Elevation:||8333 ft / 2539 m|
Ascent Trip ReportPerfect conditions and a great crew!
Loose snow (Cascades version of powder) over a really hard crust at about 9" depth on the south aspect from 5000-8400'. Wind blown snow deposited up to 22" deep on lee sides and in shallow depressions.
When we were traversing from Monitor Ridge @ ~7600' NNW to the true summit (not the one that everyone else goes to) I was wading through 10-18" putting in steps on a 40-45 degree incline, with wind scoured ice along even minor ridges. That was probably the only part that gave me any pause as far as avalanche goes (whumpf-ing steeps about four times in ~.25mi), but thankfully we were very near the top of the ridge so there wasn't much space above us for a release, and no one below us (west of Monitor ridge).
The trail from the Marble Mtn. Sno-park is fully packed in all the way up to where the falls are at in the summer (~3700'). Boots were OK if you stay in the middle of the trail. We went snowshoes to ~4500' and then crampons from there, but MSR snowshoes or skis (w/skins) could be worn the whole way.
|Summary Total Data|
| Elevation Gain:||5873 ft / 1789 m|
| Extra Gain:||100 ft / 30 m|
| Distance:||10 mi / 16.1 km|
| Route:||Swift Creek (winter)|
| Trailhead:||Marble Mtn Sno-Park 2660 ft / 810 m|
| Grade/Class:||Class 2|
| Quality:||7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)|
| Route Conditions:||Maintained Trail, Open Country, Snow on Ground, Snow Climb|
| Gear Used:||Ice Axe, Crampons, Snowshoes|
| Nights Spent:||0 nights away from roads|
| Weather:||Cold, Calm, Partly Cloudy|
Perfect alpine weather! ~32deg
| Time Up:||6 Hours 30 Minutes|
| Time Down:||3 Hours |
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