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Trip Report    

Whistler Mountain

Lynn and I led a scramble up Whistler on 6/22/2014. Our choice of route led to a strenuous and demanding ascent; on descent we found a more conventional, and easier, route. Parking at Rainy Pass, we crossed to the snow filled parking lot to the north of the North Cascade Highway and entered the quite open forest, following a bearing to the east. We found a crossing of the stream draining the basin to the west of Whistler at ~5,200’, made a rising traverse through forest, then traversed south and east at 5,400-5,600’, following the border between forest and steeper slopes. The easier ascent (as we discovered) climbs the slopes to the north of the major stream flowing southwesterly from the summit and eventually follows Whistler’s west ridge to the summit. On descent we found segments of a boot track there in snow free areas. Here’s a waypoint marking the entry onto a meadow slope leading up to this route (NAD27,zone 10U, easting 668320, northing 5375749, elevation 5658’). We, however, entered the major stream gully draining Whistler’s southwest slope, soon abandoning its loose, steep course for the ridge to its south. A rock band which required an athletic move brought us onto reasonable, if loose, slopes which culminated in a headwall. We then traversed left, across several gullies to the aforesaid west ridge and followed it to the summit. Clear skies gave us expansive views of the North Cascades and as a bonus we saw the most intensely colored sun halo any of us had ever seen.