Trip Report    

Winter Scramble - Mount Wow

Found decent weather window for a final scramble in 2020. Challenging physically demanding trip.

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  •  In hindsight crampons may have been a better choice on two steep sections with horrible runout. We all had snowshoes, micro spikes and crampons.  Snow lower down on route could make a summit very tough to achieve in a day. 

Plenty of shoulder parking on N side of road just outside Nisqually gate.

6 1/2 hrs up   4 1/2 hrs down

Left the TH at 7:40, Traveling North from the Nisqually entrance on the unmaintained Boundary trail gaining 2k ft in 2 mi. the easy part of our  trip. Short breaks throughout the day changing layers, traction devices, grabbing something quick to eat, drink.   After turning West on the ridge encountered snow at 4400 feet. Skirting the first bump on this ridge to the North just below 4600 ft. worked much better on our return, vs the steep accent going over the bump. Nav. error transitioning to South ridge below point 5614 cost us about 30 min. Various forms of traction used eventually all on snowshoes by  5400 ft.  Avy beacons on at 5k ft.  1 ft. of new snow on solid Dec 21 crust.  Hit summit just before our 14:00 turn around time. Enjoyed views of Volcanoes to the south including Hood, Olympics and Puget Sound. Summit of Rainier in clouds, good visibility of lower mountain and peaks, slightly reducing our exclamation of WOW upon reaching the summit.  Crampons from the summit, back to snow shoes 200 ft below summit, back to crampons at 5200 ft. to our return to the ridge at 4400 ft. just before dark. Spent small amounts of time relocating the trail on the decent, team worked well together on Nav. all day, especially the last 2 hours. We arrived to rain at the TH by 18:40 feeling our physical efforts, mentally refreshed,  from our challenging accomplishment.