Mt. Hood May 16, 2009

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      [Ed: Imported from Americas Roof ‘Summit Trip Reports’ forum]
      [By: Alan Smith on July 13 2009 at 6:59 PM]

      This is a short description of my guided climb with Mr. Chris Simmons of Seattle, Washington with cooperation from Timberline Mountaineering Guides via the West Rim Old Chute Variation Route on May 16, 2009. The day prior to the Mt. Hood Climb, I spent the day with Mr. Simmons practicing walking with crampons and self-arrest techniques. The day of the climb, we started with a ride in a snow cat from Timberline Lodge at 2:30 A.M. and departed the snow cat at the top of the Palmer Ski Lift thus reducing the climbing by 2.5 miles and 2700 vertical feet. In order to avoid crowds on the standard Southern Route via the The Hogsback, we ascended via the West Route and avoided direct rock and ice fall from Crater Rock. Near Crater Rock and with the smell of gas from the vents of Mt. Hood, it is time to put on the crampons and ready the ice ax for two difficult ascents of steep and icy slopes to the summit ridge. The summit ridge is a very narrow snow and ice packed trail with drops on both sides for approximately 3/8 of a mile before reaching the small summit of Mt. Hood. I consider myself a slow climber, and this route took me five hours and ten minutes to reach the summit.

      For the descent, we took one of the chutes down toward Crater Rock and the Hogsback. The route is longer going down by 2.5 miles, because the snow cat is not at the Palmer Lift to return to Timberline Lodge.

      In summary, I want to give Mr. Simmons my highest appreciation and recommendation for his services on Mt. Hood. I also recommend getting some practice with crampons on another mountain prior to taking on Mt. Hood.

      For information on climbing Mt. Whitney California with Mr. Chris Simmons, please reference my posting entitled Mt Whitney Trip For August 2007 in the California section.

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