Monday, June 9, 2008

Iron Peak 6.9.08

I have been unable to do any substantial trips the last few weeks, so for today I thought I would make up for some lost time. I managed to get up at 0315 which I hoped would give me enough time. I have wanted to do a loop trip for some time involving Iron Mt, Gene's Peak, Bill's Peak and Earl Peak. I felt like with the snow conditions this would be an easier time of year to do this loop. I was dismayed to see Winter storm warning posted for today. My hope was that I would be able to outrun the weather and of course I was counting on the Teanaway effect. I reached the trailhead to a nice sunrise raising my hopes that I would be able to squeeze everything in. The morning sun on Bill's peak was a good sign.

As I made my way further up the trail both Gene's Peak and Iron Peak came into view. I think it is apparent I need to work on my panoramic pictures.

I didn't reach consistent snow until 5200' and a short time later I was kicking steps to the saddle between Iron and Gene's peak. As always the dogs seemed to be enjoying themselves.
Reaching the saddle the ridge walk to Iron's summit was open and easy. The weather had quickly degraded into wind and snow. I was thankful that I had brought my winter clothes because they were quite necessary. I followed some tracks to the base of Gene's Peak and was able to follow in the icy steps up to a major snow finger that reached nearly to the summit block. This finger was fairly steep and with the weather degrading further I opted to glissade back to the basin. My fear was the approaching storm which I feared quite substantial would arrive sooner than expected. I wasn't in the mood for high winds and heavy snow. I easily made my way back to the trail and on to the car. Looking back at the route up to Gene's Peak I think I made the right choice for this day.

Approx 10 miles 3000' of climb 5:15 car to car

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