Perfect Conditions for a Climb

07/29/13

Perfect Conditions for a Climb

A trip report for Mount Adams South Climb
Posted by sjipapa
Road Issues: Road is great
Trail Condition: Easy to navigate
Bugs: Not an issue
Snow Level: Only after 7,000 ft

Another Diverse Edgeventure with lifelong buddies, we headed up on a sunny Sunday and camped in The Dolphin at the trailhead before starting the climb the next morning. We took the two-day approach so we could sleep in and get used to the altitude at 5,700 feet near the trail start. It helped. Helped even more at 9,300 feet. We were glad to have the night at the higher elevation after starting from 300'.

Trail was clear of snow for the first couple miles, and only hit white once on a steep boot-step hike up a 100-yard segment in mile three. Running water about an hour in to the hike, so refill bottles here, to be sure.

Followed the rocky trail for most of the way until the first major snowfield below Lunch Counter, then hiked in the snowfield without crampons for the last mile or so.

Saw a trickle of a stream at the base of Lunch Counter, but moved up the hill a bit to the rock shelters on the east side of Lunch Counter to get a jump on the morning ascent. We had a great forecast, so decided to leave the tents at the Dolphin. Good idea. Stars were AMAZING. Small but effective water source on the upper area of Lunch Counter (where the snow meets the rock) filled our bottles many times.

Left at about 6am the second morning to use the ice on the slope to keep traction with crampons. One in our group didn't use them, but all the others found it very comforting having a strong, sure foothold. Hike up to Piker's Peak was a bear, and took two hours. Worth every minute and every labored step.

Summit was in good condition. No wind - none - and we were in thin layers in the sun. On the top, we ran into a group of boys who climbed the mountain to take their senior photos on top of it. Awesome. Spent a half hour on top, and then headed down.

Glissades were perfect around 10am, not too icy, but not chunky from the sun melt. Glad we hit them when we did.

Rest of the climb down went fast. We ventured off the beaten path and wound up hitting the meadow trail home, which was great to see a new perspective on the way back...made it feel like a "loop hike."

Wow. What a rush. We had no prior climbing experience, and were in relatively good physical condition. My friend who flew over from Germany to do this with us always says: "You don't know if you can do it until you try."

Give it a shot before the summer ends!

Boot trail up the first steep slope about 2 miles in the hike.

Rock shelter for the night at Lunch Counter. We skipped the tent to save our backs on the hike. Good call for us.

On the ascent to Piker's Peak. Steep stuff. We used an interval approach to make it up in just under two hours.

Comments (4)

Great job!!

Nice! Looks like a great climb.

EdgeVenture! Love it. Thanks for posting.

Thanks for the info! I will give this a shot next month.