Saturday, March 26, 2016

Stormy Mountain, Chelan Range

After turning around early a few weeks ago Stormy got under my skin a bit. Armed with a better forecast/conditions, a more direct route and a trail-breaking partner (Eric), we were under six hours car-to-car, which was almost too quick given the lengthy drive.

Instead of the sinuous southwest ridge I tried last time, we started on road 5501 at ~2100' and took the west ridge from 3150' all the way to the summit. Up until 6600' the snow was firm and perfect and we only had some fresh and windblown snow for the last 600' vertical.

The route goes fairly straightforward: no brush, it's reasonably open with no route finding puzzles and nothing steeper than about 45 degrees (and those are short sections). You do gain about 1800' in the last mile to the summit, though. A very good winter-spring route in the right conditions.

12.1m, 5155' gain
Starting out on road 5501 with Stormy 5k' above
Some outcrops to stay north (left) of at ~4900'
Easy travel before the final push to the summit
Ascent ridge behind Eric
Reaching the broad, open summit
The summit offers views from Mt. Adams all the way to the eastern Pasayten
Zoom pano of the northern Chelan range, Entiat range, Glacier Peak, the Dakobed and Glacier Peak Wilderness peaks
Lake Chelan, Manson and Chelan

XC starts at the saddle right mid-ground and follows the middle ridge all the way to the summit; taken at about 2700' on road 5501

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