Ascent of Mount Shasta on 2008-06-08

Climber: Ken Curtis

Others in Party:Fred Duncan
Jeff Lage
Date:Sunday, June 8, 2008
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Mount Shasta
    Elevation:14162 ft / 4316 m

Ascent Trip Report

Day 1 (Bunny Flat to 50/50 plateau), this stretch took roughly four hours with 40 pounds in our packs and a 10 minute stop at horse camp. We set camp at the plateau (10,090 feet) and spent an hour and a half practicing self rescue with our ice axes. Everyone was in their tents by sundown. Unfortunately I take a long time to adjust to the altitude and I began to feel the affects shortly after laying down.

Day 2 (Summit Day), awakened at 2:10 am, we readied our gear and had a quick bite to eat before starting our ascent at 3:15 am. I was on a rope team with Fred, Jeff, and our guide John. The distance to the summit was a mere three miles, but it took us eight hours including a brief rest atop the Red Banks and another atop Misery Hill. Our ascent route was to the left of "The Heart" and the left side of the "Red Banks" (West side).

11:15 and were on the summit...

It's always exhilarating to stand on such a high and isolated summit, especially one as challenging and scenic as Shasta. We signed the registry and took a few pictures, then began our descent.

Going down was much faster. We descended through one of the chimneys on the right side of Red Banks (East side). This was a very steep, narrow and icy route that truely challanged my nerves. At the base of the banks, we removed our crampon's, secured our packs, sat on our bottoms and glissaded roughly 2,500 vertical feet down the right side of the heart (East side) - What a kick... This was my favorite part of the whole trip.

3:30 pm and we are back at base camp on the 50/50 plateau. We broke camp and hiked/boot skied back to bunny flat, arriving at 6:17 pm.

Wow, what a trip... Summit day was an exhausting fifteen hour hiking day.
Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:7282 ft / 2219 m
    Elevation Loss:7282 ft / 2219 m
    Distance:11 mi / 17.7 km
    Grade/Class:Class 3
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Scramble, Snow Climb
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Crampons, Ski Poles, Guide, Tent Camp
    Weather:Cool, Breezy, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Elevation Gain:7282 ft / 2219 m
    Distance:5.5 mi / 8.9 km
    Route:Avalanche Gulch (left of heart)
    Trailhead:Bunny Flat  6880 ft / 2097 m
    Time Up:1 Days 1 Hours 33 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Elevation Loss:7282 ft / 2219 m
    Distance:5.5 mi / 8.9 km
    Route:Avalanche Gulch (right of heart)
    Trailhead:Bunny Flat  6880 ft / 2097 m
    Time Down:6 Hours 17 Minutes

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