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Trip Report    

Dragontail Peak/Colchuck Col

Dragontail Peak

  • Road suitable for all vehicles

We had beautiful weather with gorgeous views from the summit! The trail up to Colchuck Lake was free of snow and the lake was only partially ice covered. We didn’t need crampons for the first part of our ascent of the Colchuck Glacier since it was in the sun, but we did use crampons for the second half of it that was in the shade. We kept our crampons on above the col, but took them off after we exited the snow to the left ~30 feet below Pandora’s Box. We scrambled up 4th class rock and stayed on the ridge line for a couple hundred feet before getting back on the snow. There was a clear boot path heading northeast from the ridgeline to the base of the summit. The snow was quite soft and we didn’t put our crampons back on for our traverse from the ridgeline above Pandora’s Box to the base of the summit. Once we were back on rock, we scrambled to the summit to enjoy the views. From the summit, we descended southeast to the saddle, and then plunge-stepped our way to Aasgard Pass. Aasgard Pass is rapidly melting out, so we stayed on the rock almost the entire way down to Colchuck Lake. The upper part of our descent down Aasgard Pass was clearly marked with large cairns, but the lower part was not.

Gear: We brought a 30-m skinny rope, pickets, and some rock pro, but we didn’t need to use them. Crampons and ice axes were very helpful though.

Time: 5.5 hours from the trailhead to the col, 1.5 hours from the col to the summit, and 5 hours from the summit to the trailhead. Total roundtrip time, with breaks included, was just over 13 hours.