Mt. Washington

September 11-12, 2009

We arrived at the the trailhead on a beautiful Friday afternoon. We departed the following morning under a partial moon at 5:00 a.m. The hike down the P.C.T in the dark was smooth and uneventful. We started up the climbers trail a little early as it is a bit more of a challenge in the dark. The morning light did arrive and we were able to negotiate the rest of the trail through the the forest without difficulty. The day promised to be a repeat of the previous day with clear skies and high temps.

We arrived on the north ridge at 6:45 a.m. We enjoyed a brief rest and proceeded up the ridge to the notch. It was now 8:00 a.m. and we settle down for a moment and get some water and food in us.

We gear up and I take Tim over to the first pitch to go over the anchor and belay expectations. Once we are happy with the anchor and expectations we all check each other out.

I begin my climb up the ramp of the first pitch. I arrive at the crux with an assortment of pro. I find a placement just inside the roof of the first part of the crux, then back it up with another piece and head up to the next problem. I sling a chickenhead nice and tight and clip the rope in. I finally arrived at the top and pull in the slack and tie it off.

We all arrived at the top of the first pitch with little difficulty. I proceed to the second pitch and build another anchor with Tim. Once we get this figured out I am on my way up. This pitch was the most difficult in terms of which way to go. There is a prominent rock along the way that I clipped into that has many slings. This section produced major rope drag. We all arrived at the top of the second pitch with even less difficulty, well at least they did.

I quickly set up for the final pitch and arrived at the summit to find the anchor rock missing all of its slings, hmm. I have no choice but to commit a personal sling. The rest of the group followed plus three other climbers not part of our group. We arrived on the summit to many flying ants and the standard housefy.

On the way down I set up and removed the rope for four raps. From the summit down I committed three slings, one ’biner, and one rap ring to the mountain. During this time the mountain is humming with activity. I had to negotiate our descent a couple of times, gee whiz. We arrived back at the notch and quickly scrambled down to a safe place to enter the scree field. We made our way down the scree, hiked through pretty meadows and reveled at our accomplishment as we looked back upon Mt. Washington.

It was a great climb with a great group of guys. Thanks goes out to Wayne Deeter for helping me prepare for the climb.

Climbers were Dave Jensen, Doug McCarty, Tim Swallin and Larry Huff, leader.

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