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Author Topic: Summiting St. Helens - Mission Accomplished (Pics & Video Added)  (Read 29183 times)

Online h20hunter

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #45 on: May 31, 2013, 08:18:38 AM »
Keep the crazy fool in your thoughts....hoping for safe, uneventful, make it down in one piece day for Smossy.

Offline Bluesdude

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #46 on: May 31, 2013, 08:24:39 AM »
I would take a GPS if you have one, and note the wood trail markers on the way up.  You shouldnt have to deal with the soft pumice near the top, since it should be snow covered.  Even on a nice days like we are expecting this weekend, you can get socked in up there.  I will be below ya on Coldwater Lake fishing Saturday.  Bring layers in case it gets cold/windy.  Even though the top is only about 8800 feet the temps can vary. 

Todd
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Offline Smossy

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #47 on: May 31, 2013, 11:32:15 PM »
Mission accomplished, most physically demanding thing Ive ever done in my life hands down... no snowshoes, no crampons, no ice axe. We had clouds near the timber line but as elevation increased so did the difficulty, and then the clouds parted ways and made for an amazing day. Total hike was 14 hours - alittle longer then expected but it was worth it, got a perfecy clear view of all three mountains. I took alot of photos and about 5 hours of gopro footage so once I get that together ill post it up, in the car on the way home. Did i mention Im beat! Holy crap.
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Offline hrd2fnd

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #48 on: May 31, 2013, 11:48:31 PM »
glad to see your back safe and sound my friend,looking forward to the photographs

 :tup:
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Offline RadSav

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #49 on: May 31, 2013, 11:51:04 PM »
Sounds like we need to invite you into our elk camp.  I now know you can cook and we are always looking for a designated pack mule.  How good are you at building and maintaining latrines  :chuckle:
He asked, Do you ever give a short simple answer?  I replied, "Nope."

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #50 on: June 01, 2013, 12:01:03 AM »
Nice job Smossy!
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Offline newbie76

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #51 on: June 01, 2013, 12:45:22 AM »
Have fun! I had plans to do it but never made it! I will definitely get it done here sometime soon. Post all videos and pictures I would love to see them!!!!

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Offline Boss .300 winmag

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #52 on: June 01, 2013, 08:04:06 AM »
Congratulations Smossy  :tup::whoo:

Any lessons learned you want to share with us? Why no ice ax?

That has been a bucket list item for me for a long time.
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Offline dawn2dusk

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #53 on: June 01, 2013, 08:38:55 AM »
Right on!!  :tup:
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Offline Austrian Hunter

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #54 on: June 01, 2013, 09:53:19 AM »
Super cool!!  Can't wait to see the pictures and video!!!!  Great Job!! 

Offline Transka

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #55 on: June 01, 2013, 10:05:23 AM »
Love that Hike Hate the Boulder field though I went in sept last year no snow I am sure its a lot easier with snow !

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #56 on: June 01, 2013, 10:33:10 AM »
Current picture. Doesn't look like it will be too much of anything. Should be nice.  :tup:
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Offline Rob

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #57 on: June 01, 2013, 10:52:35 AM »
Missed this thread.  Congrats!  I find it a fun hike and plan to try to do it every year.

Weather on the bottom is totally different than weather on top!  first time we went there it was overcast and cool at camp.  This turned to rain and fog that dropped viz to 40 yards on the way up.  This turned to 70 mph winds with blowing snow on top.  I did not have a wind gauge, but I ride motorcycles so I know what 70 mph winds feel like!  True misery.  It was like being caught in a very cold sand storm.   As I neared the top I met some of my buddies who had turned around.  One of them had been wearing a cheap rain poncho.  The cold weather and wind had shredded it to ribbons with only the hood intact.  I will never get the hysterical image of my buddy looking like he was wearing a large camo colored salmon hoochie on his head!  I was the only one who made it to the rim.  I did not make it to the true summit (about 1/4 mile to the west of where the trail from the bivouac trail hits the rim) as I did not want to try it solo being the first time I had done the hike.  I made one big mistake on that trip.  Iíd planned on a victory celebration of smoking my pipe and enjoying a shot of single malt.  Well the wind was so strong there was no easy way to light the pipe.  Also my hands were FREEZING even with gloves so spending time on the rim was not exactly high on my list.  But I was able to do the shot of scotch.  I am not a drinker Ė I enjoy a quality beer and really enjoy a good scotch from time to time, but I limit my consumption. I might enjoy an adult beverage once every month to month and a half and never more than 2-3 drinks per time Ė and that is spread out over several hours.  Needless to say I am a light weight. Well, this marks the one and only time I have been "drunk".  Between the altitude and exertion, and even though it was just an ounce and a half of scotch, it hit me like a hammer.  I drank it rather fast as I wanted to get the hell off the rim, and within a minute I became light headed and dizzy.  I honestly donít remember much from the next 5 min or so as I stumbled down the mountain.  Once I got below the rim and the wind died down to a nice calm 50 mph, I sat down and drank some water to hydrate.  This seemed to quell the effects of the scotch and I felt much better.  The first photo was my view of the rim that year.  It is exactly as I remember the rim to be.  Dark, cold, blurry and miserable.  Heck, this could be a dive photo of dalco wall!

Last year we did it and the weather was outstanding.  We spent 5 hours on the top and I went to the true summit two times.  We had sun and the wind was under 20 mph.  Very enjoyable.  Second and third photos are from that trip.

I did my first winter ascent back in April and that was great too.  lots of fun.  fourth photo is of that trip.

We have a permit for August this year so that should be fun. 

We plan on doing Adams this year if the weather cooperates.  We plan on hitting Baker and Rainer next year.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2013, 11:03:16 AM by Rob »
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Offline Rob

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #58 on: June 01, 2013, 10:59:33 AM »
On the drive back from Mt St Helens in April, our climb team was thinking about our approach to climbing. 

For example, we all agreed that I was kinda stupid to solo the summit in the weather we had a couple years back.  Since we want to do more technical mountains in the next few years, we decided to put some guidelines into our climbs going forward.  As one of my buddies always says, the Mountain donít care if you live or dieÖ

Iíll share the output here for others to consider.
_________________

The Mountain may not care if you live or die, but we do care if members of our party live or die or get hurt... We want to do these to have fun, and dealing with an injured person, too many people in a climbing party, or radically different climbing techniques would impact safety and fun.

To that end, here are some of the guard rails we brainstormed on:

1. Date setting
Planning a trip like this is complicated and difficult. The climbing depends on availability of the climbing teams (more on climbing teams in a moment), and the weather. For the last trip to St Helens, we canceled 2x before we were able to make it up the Mt.

Due to complexity of scheduling, the climbing dates will be set by the lead climbing team. Anyone who wants to come along can do so, but we can't afford to pick dates based on committee or it won't get done. Others who want to go on their own trip on different dates would be encouraged to do so and we will of course all be welcome to share info and plans and root for each other. I know that sounds kinda harsh and I donít like to be that way, but I donít see this working any other way based on what we have done in the past.

A final go/no-go decision for the climb will need to be made just prior to the event. And each team will need to make that call on their own.

2. Climbing teams
Climbing teams need to be created. We recommend a minimum of 2, and a maximum of 4 similarly matched climbers. This is important for a few reasons.

First is safety. We think it is important that the teams be within 100 yards (or visual range, whatever is shorter) of each other so that they can be there for each other if there are issues.

Second is pace. It is not fun to feel as though you are rushing to keep up with another climber who is out of sight ahead of you. Likewise it is not fun to feel as though you have to stop just as you are getting your stride on the way up.

We base the size on safety and logistics. 2 would be a minimum for safety. As we get into rope up situations, the minimum should probably be more like 3 Ė but we need more experience before we can comment on that.

We feel strongly that once we go to more advanced climbs than Mt St Helens, the importance of a climbing team will increase. The teams really need to commit to sticking together (i.e. no more than 100 yards of separation or whatever you agree to). We don't want one person turning around early or forging on ahead solo forcing the rest of the team, or other teams to have to abort their hikes to do a search.

3. Planning and training
We feel that the teams should not just show up the day of the climb and decide how to attack it. Eventually we want to do Baker, Rainer, Glacier and possibly Hood. So working as a team will have downstream benefits.

It is important that the teams each have pre-agreed to abort criteria (based on fatigue, visibility, weather conditions, time of day, etc)

The teams need to agree on the minimum equipment needed (crampons, ice axe, ropes, etc).

The teams should plan to be familiar with their equipment prior to the climb.

The teams should plan to be conditioned to make the climb (dealing with elevation gain, endurance, and effects of altitude)



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Sit tall in the saddle, hold you head up high.
Keep your eyes fixed on where the trail meets the sky.
Live like you ainít afraid to die.
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Offline Smossy

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Re: Summiting St. Helens Friday Morning
« Reply #59 on: June 01, 2013, 12:17:18 PM »
Ill write more of a story of what happened later, Im just too sore, burnt, miserable right now to sit here and think about it all :chuckle:
Like I said earlier I think. It was in fact the most physical demanding thing I've ever done in my life x4 - It was beyond what my body/muscles could do and It turned into all mental ability from there.
Here are some photos of the trip. I think ill be able to remember how amazing it was here in a few days when I recuperate. :tup: To all who want to do this, DO it. Push yourself to the limit. Its rewarding and its beautiful to be above the cloud line.
 
« Last Edit: June 01, 2013, 12:35:30 PM by Smossy »
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