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Trip Report    

Alpine Scramble - Snoqualmie Mountain

A short but well-rounded experience for scramble students on (mostly) well-consolidated snow.

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Trail?  We're scramblers, we don't need no steenking trail!  Well, actually ran into partially buried route from time to time.  Snow conditions were considerably better than field trip for plunge stepping and, oh yes, glissading!

The precipitation that we experienced on the drive to the TH faded before we got there.  It stayed away long enough for us to ascend above the day's freeze level, and remained sparse.  There were no signs of snow instability on the ascent, though numerous avalanches had occurred some days earlier.    There are some nicely visible cornices overhanging the eastern side of the ridge leading to the summit which are easy to avoid.  Lunch on top was possible due to essentially no wind (but socked in -no views). we got fairly close to the bottom (the falling snow turning to light showers), there was some slushy entrainment in glissade chutes.  This didn't happen earlier in the day, not even in glissade chutes higher on the mountain.

This is a great student snow scramble.  It has enough variety of snow, slope, and other features to demonstrate much of the beginning scramble repertoire, while being short enough that there can be discussion while still reaching a meaningful summit, and within the physical capabilities of students.  Avy risk is the one serious concern for this trip.