Monday, August 13, 2012

Crow Peak and Raggedtop Mountain

Adventure beckoned. Todd Kasteler and I headed out to Crow Pass to climb mountains. The objective was Crow Peak (5953') and Raggedtop Mountain (5215'). With a thirst for adventure, stellar weather, and a map, we made our way into a mountain runner's playground. From the Crow Pass trailhead, we were standing on the summit of Crow Peak in just over 2 hours. After taking a variety of summit poses in between high fives, we quickly made our descent to the low point between Crow Peak and Magpie Peak. From there, the adventure truly commenced.   

Standing on the summit of Crow Peak, Raggedtop Mountain can be seen in the distance peaking out of the clouds. Our plan was to descend Crow Peak and then climb up the snow face directly towards Magpie Peak. It would have probably been easier to simply run back towards Crow Pass and tackle Raggedtop from a different direction, but it certainly wouldn't have been as fun, physically demanding, or thrilling.

Todd leading the route up the steep snow wall. Nice work!

Looking back at Crow Peak. Our route ascended the ridgeline.

After getting within a few hundred yards of Magpie Peak proper, Todd and I blasted down steep loose scree and then traversed, sidehilling, all the way to The Cache. From The Cache, we made our way through the clouds to a ridgeline. Although in fog and confronted with several hundred feet of steep rocks and uncertain territory, we methodically climbed our way towards the summit one rock at a time. The photo belows attempts to capture our mood and the remaining road ahead to the summit. 

After making our way out of the clouds at about 5,000 feet, we finally stood on the summit of Raggedtop Mountain. The views were incredible!

Todd in a zen moment on a difficult peak after a long haul. Glorious!