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Trip Report    

Clark Mountain/Walrus Glacier

Encountered snow at about 4000 feet near the standard stream crossing, which was too flooded to be safe. We proceeded just past the crossing to lingering snow drifts that were deep enough to cross over the feeder streams safely.

The valley above was snow filled and littered with old avy debris. We walked up it to its head and spotted the summer switchbacks to Boulder Pass. We ascended talus and steep slopes to get on the switchbacks, but these ended in a snow bank again just above. We continued on 35-40 degree slopes to Boulder Pass.

The Pass was snowfilled but we found a small stream in a melted out glade and got water there.

There was no easy way down from the pass to start ascent towards the Walrus, and we had to do a 200 foot downclimb from the ridge. Most of the ridge had been corniced and this was broken or melted, and we had to face in downclimb very hard snow. The top was about 50 degrees and it mellowed to 35 or 40. This section was very similar to the descent from the top of the N face of N Twin Sister, but with firm snow.

The glacier was already opening up and the standard route up the left seemed to have had too many slides and too little maneuvering room to be palatable so we ascended the left side just 200 or 300 feet before doing a rising ascent to the middle of the glacier. We ascended a couple steep sections over large snow bridges that will likely not last long.

The Summit Block was not all melted out either and we had to combine rock scrambling with snow traverses upwards. Just prior to the false summit we ascended a 45-50 degree slope (very soft, buckets) and then gentler slopes to the summit. On the descent we managed to run the ridge and just cross much shorter snow slopes with little exposure/steepness.