Ascent of Sovereign Mountain on 2012-03-16

Climber: Ben Still

Date:Friday, March 16, 2012
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Sovereign Mountain
    Elevation:8849 ft / 2697 m

Ascent Trip Report

Fun climb with friends! We landed on the northwest side of the mountain at about 7100' late in the afternoon of the 15th hoping to ski the NW face of the mountain the next day. Upon further inspection the snow was found to be rock hard and icy. This place gets hammered by the wind. Although there is a bit of an icefall this would be a great ski run in the right conditions.

The next morning we awoke to bitter cold temperatures hovering around -30F. We changed plans and climbed up over the 7700' pass to the west of the peak and down glacier to the south ridge/face. This is mostly a scree slope with some intermittent snow patches and a little bit of scrambling. The climb didn't take very long after our crack of noon start waiting for the temps to warm to a balmy -5F. We were back in Talkeenta by 7pm for pizza and beer.

A few photos from an attempt on Polar Bear Peak and then a couple from Sovereign Mountain:
Click on photo for original larger-size version.
Sovereign Mountain from the 7750' pass to the west (2012-03-16). Photo by Ben Still.
Click here for larger-size photo.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2849 ft / 867 m
    Total Elevation Loss:2849 ft / 867 m
    Route Conditions:
Snow on Ground, Scramble, Snow Climb, Glacier Climb
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Crampons, Rope, Tent Camp
    Weather:Frigid, Calm, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:2349 ft / 715 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 1749 ft / 533 m; Extra: 600 ft / 182m
    Loss on way in:600 ft / 182 m
    Start Trailhead:7100 ft / 2164 m
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:2249 ft / 685 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 1749 ft / 533 m; Extra: 500 ft / 152m
    Gain on way out:500 ft / 152 m
    End Trailhead:7100 ft / 2164 m

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