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Trip Report    

Mount Daniel/Daniel Glacier

6/20/2015:
Headed up to Mt. Daniels for a 2 day basic glacier climb with a team of 8; 3 leads, 5 followers.
We met at the trailhead at 9 am, started hiking at 9:30 am
The road to the trailhead was completely clear of snow and the small creek a few minutes prior to the trailhead was passable with about 3 - 4 inches of water.

We started hiking at 9:30 and arrived at Peggy's Pond at 1pm. there was no snow up to Peggy's Pond; watch out for aggressive mosquitos.
The team camped a few minutes past the pond near a run-off stream where we could see the climbing route. We set up camp, scouted the route and retired early.
At 4:30 am we started the climb by bouldering up to 7000 ft towards the East Summit. Only at 7000 ft did we find consistent hard snow and were able to crampon up. We traversed just underneath the prominent spire to enter Daniel glacier. We encountered hard snow, several open crevasses, and a long 50 degree slope heading towards the middle peak. The first rope team attempted to cross that slope, but had to front-point and set numerous pickets in the process. We realized the route was too advanced for a basic climb (needing a 2nd ice axe and steel crampons) and abandonded that route. The team then proceeded via Hyas glacier to the East Summit; the route was still hard snow; crampons/ice axe needed and we stayed roped up.
After 4 1/2 hours of climbing, we successfully summited the East Peak of Daniels.
The weather was slightly overcast with light winds; temperature on the peak 44 degrees.
After 1/2 hour break, the team descended via the scramble route traversing downwards in SW direction on snow to approx. 6500 ft where we then re-joined our ascent scramble route to the camp.
Return to the camp 2.5 hours later; a 35 min break for packing up gear, and a 2.5 hour descent on the trails brought us back to the cars ~ 3:30 pm making it a total trip time of 11 hours Sunday.

Note: This route (South of the spire) is out for the 2015 season unless one wants to do it as an intermediate climb. It's in fact only a basic climb in high, soft snow conditions so one can traverse the steep slope safely.
One should try entering the Daniel glacier just North of the Spire; the slope angle should be lower there.
The approach to Peggy's Pond was straight forward on trails and with good signage.

 

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