Monday, July 11, 2016

The Central Washington Desert

When the Puget Sound calls for rain, this is what the rain shadow brings central Washington.









Sunday, July 3, 2016

Dragontail Peak, Backbone Ridge 5.9 (IV+)


Jonathan and I set out to do the Backbone Ridge on Dragontail Peak with the Fin Direct on a car-to-car single push since neither of us had permits for camping in the Enchantments.  From what information we gathered, it would take us 4+ hours to reach the base of the climb, and somewhere between 16-24 hours total.  I snuck into my girls' bedroom after they were asleep to kiss them goodbye, and steal a toy from each before taking off to Leavenworth.  This way they could see all the fun their toys have while they are asleep.  So at 11:30pm, fueled by caffeine and a short afternoon nap, I met Jonathan in Leavenworth and we were on the road by midnight.  Ideally this would place us at the base of the route at dawn.  The approach went faster than anticipated and we ended up sitting around on the morane of the Colchuck Glacier awaiting dawn.  When the morning light finally shone on the north face of Dragontail Peak it revealed the route to us.  It was now 4:30am.  We traversed the glacier and cruised up the approach pitches.  Eight hours of climbing later we topped out and saw a few hikers on the summit, the first people we had seen since leaving Leavenworth. We enjoyed the summit and took some pictures before starting the trek back down Asgard Pass to the lake.  By the time we reached Lake Colchuck, it was blazing hot so we both jumped into the glacial fed turquoise blue frigid waters before hiking the last 5 miles to the car.  Car-to-Car took us 17hrs including quite a few leisurely breaks (glacier, summit, swim, etc).
Rough Numbers:
Distance: 15 miles
Trailhead: 3,300ft
Summit: 8,842ft
Climbing: 1,800ft
More pictures including photospheres and full resolution downloads
Oh ya, and here are some pictures of "Giraffey" and "Jessie" tagging along for the adventure...




































And most of the photos in a slideshow: