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Ascent of Chair Peak on 1999-01-20

Climber: Austin Smith

Date:Wednesday, January 20, 1999
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Chair Peak
    Location:USA-Washington
    Elevation:6238 ft / 1901 m

Ascent Trip Report

I have to laugh at how many times I tried to access this climb. Too much avalanche hazard on several occaisions, to cold with multiple other parties once, couldn't find the route once. It was my nemis. On this trip there were three of us. The best climber went up and then backed off. Faced with another reason to bail I revolted. "Give me the rack". I got two or three nuts in a corner up the first 70' and then nothing thru the crux. The entire face was routinely sloughing spindrift down the face and thru a narrow slot that I had to go through to access the main face. Every twenty to thirty seconds a woosh of snow would barrel through. I tried timing it and got my glasses covered instead. Now I'm 100' past my last pro in a significant snow storm on 65 degree ice without the ability to see or clean my glasses. Kathunk, Kathunk, the near freezing ice was beautifully plastic and taking my tools like a five dollar whore. From there on up it was cake. The angle eases a bit but the snow didn't.

Be forwarned to chose the correct descent gully though. We chose the wrong one and were forced to rappel into the obvious notch with all of the rappel anchors down the east face gully. Just a miniature epic there. The descent in to the bowl is steep, fast and fun. The clouds were illuminated by the lights from Alpenthal giving an erie glow to our screaming glissade down in the otherwise, dark.
Summary Total Data
    Quality:2 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Snow on Ground, Snow Climb, Ice Climb
Ascent Statistics
    Route:North Face
Descent Statistics



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