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Trip Report    

Basic Alpine Climb - Whitehorse Mountain/Northwest Shoulder

Whitehorse summit via east ledges. Rappel across moat.

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Trail is a nightmare...  Bushwacker's delight.  First 2000 ft are good trail, then becomes very challenging the rest of the way to maintain path.  Route is flagged and cairned, but path is mostly overgrown.  Lost the trail several times on the way in, and nearly lost it several times on the way out.  

    No running water until below high pass.

     

     

Arrived to camp ~2pm below high pass at first available water.  There are no streams until this point, only a patch of snow below Lone Tree pass.  Started summit climb 5:30am the next morning.  Initially mistook drainage at the end of the basin as high pass, rappelled off tree and then corrected route.  Note: high pass is the very large talus field before the end of the basin.  

Glacier was in good shape, no open crevasses.  Protected two steep sections with pickets, due to long/unknown run out below.

Moat below central approach to summit was ~20 ft wide.  However, notch on left was easily accessible and gave access to the east ledge system.  Led up ledges (~5.2)  with two 60m half ropes and rack of nuts, tricams, C3's and a 0.75.   Route had a lot of loose rock, but was able to find reasonable placements.  Made anchor at notch as route turned the corner, then scrambled to top.  Students ascended/self-belayed with double prusiks on fixed ropes.  ~3 hrs for all people on summit.

For descent, leader rappelled route, others pulled ropes up and cleaned gear anchor.  Leader traversed to base of standard rappel and set anchor below edge of moat.  Students and assistant leader completed rappel across moat with tension assist.  

On descent from High Pass, one student slipped on talus and required first aid for a cut to his wrist.  Continued to camp after.  Departed camp ~6:30pm, arrived at trailhead ~12:30am...  Long but full value day.

Students were awesome, great spirits, astute route finding and bushwacking skills.  Trip would not have been a success without them.

 

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