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Argonaut Peak/South Route

Argonaut Peak, September 13-14 2014.

Hiked Beverly Creek Trail and Fourth Creek Trail to Ingalls Creek, Camped.

8:10 AM Sunday. Left camp, hiked up to the Ingalls Trail, then down trail 100 ft. Bushwhacked N. up along edge of forest to 5100'. Bushwhacked NE through dense brush 5 min. to avalanche clearing. Angled NE up to a minor spur, followed this (open terrain) to 6000'. Dropped into obvious main gully and scrambled up to gully fork at 7100 feet. Took left fork. (Note, avoid a side gully to the NW (left) about 6900 feet.) Class 2 so far, becomes Class 3 on mostly good rock around 7500 feet. Reached head of gully and scrambled east up 50 feet of Class 4 to attain the ridge. From here an interesting scramble (Class 3) along an exposed ledge of the ridge followed by a short vertical step leads to the summit. One can pass under the huge summit rock and thus avoid the most exposed part of the ledge.

Returned same route. There are few cairns, but the guidebook "Summit Routes" (100 highest) gives an excellent description. Dan Lauren's description is good too. Note that there is very little water on the route in late season, but there may be some in the gully in places.

Returned to camp at 5:30, and reached the car at 10:00.

This is definitely Basic Alpine level, and a rope is advisable at least to rappel the upper section. There was no snow (mid Sept.)

Ansel Wald


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