Having been so disappointed by bad weather for the annual New Year’s Mt. Hood climb, a few
of us maintained hope of still doing a winter climb.
The green light was flashed a few days beforehand.
Under semi-foggy, cold Eugene skies, six of us, with little or no sleep, left Eugene at
Arriving at Timberline at 4:00, it was obvious that the city of more than a half million below us
did not have the same desire: the mountain was basically ours!
At 5:00 we were off!
Our snowcat ride to the top of the Palmer lift took only 40 minutes.
As we proceeded uphill, our crampons firmly bit into the packed snow.
The going was easy and fast.
As we neared Devil’s Kitchen, we entertained thoughts of mounting a search party for Tom’s
lost water bottle from over a year ago.
In the essence of time, we forego the search for “another day”.
Moving along the Hogsback, you could tell it was an unusually low snow year so far.
The bergschrund is still visible to the east. We entered the left chute. There was little ice.
At 9:30 we were on top. The weather was perfect.
A light breeze, a temperature near 30 and a sky so clear you could see from Rainier to Shasta.
Everything was as it should be.
Tom, with his jelly and peanut butter jars and last year’s white bread.
John, chatting with a group of women climbers.
Ken, who has apparently forsaken his army surplus gear for the newest REI fashions.
Jan, who’s always with the guys and wondering how big the crevasses will be on Rainier this year.
And Rich, relieved that the forecast was right!
It was a GOOD day.
On Mt. Hood were Ken Ball, John Pegg, Jan & Rich Anselmo and Tom Donnelly, leader.