Mount Hood/South Side


Basic Alpine Climb - Mount Hood/South Side

Mt Hood/S Side (Palmer Glacier)

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  • Sat, May 24, 2014 — Sun, May 25, 2014
  • Seattle Climbing
  • Climbing
  • Basic Alpine
  • Adults
  • Basic Glacier Climb, Strenuous 1, Technical 2
  • Moderate
  • Elevation Gain: 5,235 ft

11:00 PM at Timberline Lodge

Follow Palmer Glacier, along E edge (right side) to avoid interfering with ski trails (as directed by sign at climbers' trailhead), to Triangular Moraine above cat track (5 degree bearing from Silcox hut). Climb above Triangular Moraine (8,500') on most gentle ground to E side of Crater Rock (slope opposite Steel Cliff). Follow round Crater Rock, above sulfur-fuming Devil's Kitchen (10,400'), to its N side to find wind carved snow formation called the Hogsback. Find the saddle that exists here that bridges Crater Rock (a remnant of the S crater wall) with N side of crater wall, where the summit is. Ascend the crest of Hogback, with the only seasonable variable being passage of the bergschrund in Hogback, leading into New Chute. Bear right to the head of New Chute (which is an ice caked mud plug called the Pearly Gates) It is passed, typically, on the right (left is steeper and narrower). A slightly leftward-trending line at top of New Chute leads to summit directly. Watch out for corniced ridgeline hazard along N summit edge. Approach: Most parties do this route as a one-day climb from Timberline Lodge. If done as a two-day climb, it is possible to camp in snow approx 500' above the top of the Palmer Chair lift at the 9,000' level. As a one-day climb, the lodge or a car camp is recommended. To car camp, either sleep in cars in parking lot or camp at Forest Service campground (both noisy). An early start (2400 or 0100) will avoid: (a) soft snow (b) rock/icefall approaching the summit, and (c) crowds at the Hogback. Check with the ranger station after July for potential rock fall danger and possible closure of route. Mt. Hood Locator Units (MLU's) are available for rent ($5.00 plus $300.00 refundable deposit, by charge card) at Mt Hood Inn in Government Camp just off SR26 on Business Loop (open 24 hours). Their use is recommended, not required. The MLU and wands would indicate prudent measures. Recommended as a mid-week due to large crowds on weekends.


Mount Hood/South Side

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

The Winter Ten Essentials - be ready for very cold & windy conditions so plenty of warm layers!!!

All items required for a basic glacier climb (check you course handouts) including ice axe, crampons, helmet

Group Gear:

Ropes & Pickets & Wands

Emergency bivvy sacks, sleeping bags, stoves

GPS units with route installed


Hood Mountain Locator Units & shovels

Trip Reports