Ruth Gulley.jpg

Trip Report    

Glacier Climb - Ruth Mountain & Icy Peak Traverse

A 3L pot and white gas stove were the MVPs of the trip!

  • Road suitable for all vehicles

Started from the TH at 11am with our group of 7.  Hit snow on the trail to Hannegan Pass around 4750’, last running water was here. We reached the pass at 1:45 taking a pretty direct line through the woods on hard snow. The scramble to 5700’ and the traverse past Pt. 5930 was in good shape; slushy on top but firm underneath. Kicking steps without crampons worked well. We roped up at 6000’. There were recent boot and ski tracks all the way to the summit of Ruth and crevasses were all covered but the big rocks are moating out. From Ruth summit we scrambled south to the flats above the gulley at 6560’ and camped.  Moving time to reach camp was just shy of 7 hours.

 Started Sunday at 5am. Fragmented trail joined with scrambling and a few sparse cairns led us to a snowfield, then more trail fragments through rocks and heather down to the Ruth-Icy saddle (1hr). There’s an alternate camp location just beyond the Ruth-Icy saddle on a knoll.  The unnamed glacier is in terrific shape! We followed the left edge up to 6500’ then crossed right to access the west ridge at 6750’.  The deep cleft between the NW summit and rocky west ridge had a large ‘schrund so we didn’t investigate that option further.  We unroped at the notch. Moving time from camp to the summit block was less ~2.5 hours.  We waited about an hour at the gulley for another party to clear the summit then scrambled it and rapped with a 60m rope.

 Back and Ruth-Icy saddle we coiled ropes and retraced the rock scramble to camp. It would have been easier to stay right and climb high on snow then traverse, cutting off a good portion of the rock scramble but it was run-out and the snow was getting soft. Image is looking back at Ruth and scramble route.

After breaking camp and melting more snow it took us 2 hours to get to the north-side of Pt. 5930.  Snow on the steep traverse was still ok, but being around 2pm, the boot track was blowing out under our feet.  Plunge stepping down the shoulder was a little bit treacherous but most people powered through. We took some time to put in a switch-backing boot track for one climber who was having trouble with the slope and slushy conditions.

The forested area below Hannegan pass was still pretty hard snow. It took us 2.5 hours from the pass to the trailhead.  Heat really slowed us down.  The only water we found above 5000’ was small trickles on moss or slab so we melted snow all weekend.