Mt. Washington

July 21, 2007

Despite a poor weather forecast, the gnarly nine drove to Hoodoo Friday evening and camped in the rain. Dawn brought patches of encouraging blue sky. We decided to hike to the Summit Pinnacle, since no one had been there except the leader. It took just over four hours to hike to the base of the pinnacle. At low elevation the lupine and bear grass were going to seed, but up on the ridge, they were glorious! The summit was obscured all the way, even the views down were intermittent. At the Summit Pinnacle the rock was damp, but only the lichen was slippery. In the fog, it took me a long time to find a route suitable for eight first timers.

We kept only one person at a time on each of the three fixed lines, so the climb went slow. Eight were on the summit by 2:00 p.m. The summit was still shrouded in misty clouds, so the views were, uh, non existent. It just kept our focus on this wonderful pile of lava. We down-climbed and rappelled, then had to free a stuck rappel rope. We started down the scree at 4:30, back to the cars at 7:30 and home by 10:00 p.m. Enjoying the hike, but not the intimidating wet rock was Chris Stockdale. Joining Leader Jim Pierce on their first ascent of Mt. Washington were members, Bill Cox, Chance Fitzpatrick, Brian Hamilton, Andrew Jensen, Steve Kuhn and soon-to-be-members Dave Morris and Gene Skinner.

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