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Trip Report    

Glacier Climb - Mount Shuksan/Fisher Chimneys

Two day climb of Mt Shuksan/Fisher Chimneys 8/11 & 8/12/17

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Patches of snow on the way to Lake Ann as well as about 3 snowfields present on the way to the Chimneys.  Right before the first chimney is a large moat, we were able to cross it and swing upwards onto a rock.  May be more difficult in a couple of weeks.  On the way down  we went down to the left, climbed into the moat and able to skirt around the whole snowfield.  There is a trail about 200 feet down near the end of the snowfield on skiers right that will lead you back to the main trail. No need to climb back up.  

    No problems getting through the chimneys.  A visible trail is easy to follow.

    Winnie's Slide is steep but in good condition.  No ice present.

    Getting onto the Curtis Glacier just after the high bivy area, has about 100 feet of hard ice with some hollow areas.  We did a running belay with ice screws on the way up, but on the way down I decided to set up a belay line. Stayed closer to the rock wall side of the hard ice.   I talked to a couple people and they avoided the ice all together by climbing up the rock.  I am not sure exactly where they got on and off the rock.  

    Hell's Highway in great shape.   A few crevasses but easily able to skirt around them. Sulphide glacier has a couple of open crevasses as well.  

    Definitely bring steel crampons and three ice screws. 

     

     

We initially wanted this to be a three day climb, but we had bad weather coming in on the third day so  made it a two day.   Most people do it in two days but it makes for the second day super long.  We camped up at the high bivy site just before you get onto the Curtis glacier.  It took us 7 hours from the parking lot.  Nice stream of water right at camp.  At least 5 decent bivy sites in the area. You can also camp just below Winnie's slide but did not see any water there.  Will need to melt snow or do the steep hike up winnie slide and down to get water. 

Started the next morning around 5:30, summited around 9:30.  There was three groups ahead of us  but did not have to wait to reach the summit block. Do be careful if people are above or below you due to rock fall.  Just follow the center gully pretty much straight up.  If you stay climbers right it seems to be easier, but you can go left as well.  We stayed initially left  as a group was coming down the right gully so we didn't need to worry about rock fall.  Some exposure right before the summit block.   

We rapped down the first rap station off the summit, but after that we downed climb the rest of the way.  A few tricky spots but way faster that rapping down.  Just depends on the comfort level of your group. 

Got delayed a bit with people coming up hell's highway.  I set up a running belay ( 2 pickets) on the down climb.  I also set up a belay station at the top of the hard ice section just before getting into camp. 

We rested, eat, packed up camp and started down around 3:30 or 4:00.  Hiked all the way out to the TH. Made it through all the chimney's before it got dark.   Got back to the TH around 11:30. I believe it took about 7 hours back down.  We all were pretty tired and took numerous rest breaks along the way. Drove back to Seattle, but had to stopped and take a nap in the car.  :)

Gear:  4 pickets, 2 ice screws (I would take 3), 2 - 30m glacier ropes,  did not take pro

 

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