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Ascent to Low Mountain-Creek crossing on 2017-05-06

Climber: Patty Cokus

Others in Party:Sean Albert
Noel Howe
(The Dog) Ava
Date:Saturday, May 6, 2017
Ascent Type:Unsuccessful - Turned Back
Point Reached:Low Mountain - Creek crossing
    Location:USA-Washington
    Elevation:3400 ft / 1036 m
    Remaining Elevation:2000 ft / 609 m (100% left to go)

Ascent Trip Report

First off Jared bailed...was it the PJ Harvey concert the night before...or the digestive issue he claimed?

So Noel, Sean, Ava and I met at P&r at 6am and headed to the Denny Crk exit. Road was blocked maybe 1.5-2 miles from highway? Parked along the road avoiding the NO PARKING ALLOWED signs. Walked the road past the campground to the TH (Denny Creek trail (?)) while I used the restroom (bonus) N & S donned snowshoes so I followed suit. If you gotta carry then you might as well wear them and avoid some postholing. Was a little scary attempting to go down the wood stairs in snowshoes as they aren't long enough to go straight...have to side step that. Then I also randomly got my snowshoe teeth stuck in between wood panels on the bridge! Stopped me cold! Anyways, moving on we were aware that the creek was running quite high...perhaps there was a reason trip reports tend to be in full winter or summer.... hmmmm....

We got to the creek where folks are normally all splayed out playing in the water and sliding down the smooth rocks...but it's a different sight with snow all around and a rushing flow of water! We headed up creek some more looking for a better spot to try crossing. Not much farther up and just a bit of steep downhill we found the best spot, but none of us had crocs because none of us had thought about that. I believe it was Noel who suggested trying bare feet in snowshoes to help with dealing with the very uneven rocky terrain, although that would do nothing for the FREEZING nature of the water... I so wish I had taken a photo of both Sean and Noel with one barefoot in a snowshoe trying to strap them down to stay on! For the record Noel's would probably have worked with his bigger front strap. I tried it for a second and decided that there also are terrible traction bumps on the snowshoe that would hurt just as much as stepping on rough rocks! Although of course your feet would go numb the instant you put them in that darn water so mute point I guess. Another factor for me was my feet were taped because they always are when I wear my boots so I would have to redo all that. So knowing that we surely could do this...I stared to wonder if it was worth it...for Low Pk...I mean, not exactly Spickard or Redoubt. In the end we decided to turn around and go do something else. We whave ups come back another time for Low and any other peaks we desired.

Felt really weird to turn around and be heading out at like 9am. Saw a few people on way in and then a large Mounties group with Andy and Emma. Some had crocs and they didn't seem deterred by the idea of the creek. We wished them luck and continued on our way feeling a bit odd to be 'shown up' but alas I think it was the right call. I really didn't want to ruin my utterly sensitive feet for a little ole I90 peak.

As we headed back out towards the trailhead we kept passing so many people on their way in with very different outfits and gear than us...down to the incredibly lined street of cars and people carrying babies and playing music with walking sticks with stones....a rather popular trail I see!

We eventually decided to rescue the day and head to Mt Washington as none of us had done that recently...






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