Sacajawea Winter Success... Finally

Sacajawea Winter Success... Finally

Wes
Wes

January 12th, 2012, 4:50 pm #1

On Monday, January the 9th we made a run up Sacajawea peak 11,936' here are some photos.


What a difference a year makes. This shot of Jeff, still below the tree line, was taken last January. The snow at this same elevation is currently only about 14 inches. We ran into deep pockets of snow on the descent this year but it was mostly wind deposited stuff.



The weather was much different on this trip as well. After getting spanked last year by winds (click the link)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... zeVfPrtXgE
we picked the the most wind-free day in the forecast and stuck to it. Beautiful weather combined with a full moon and very little snow made the approach pretty easy.


Jeff Giese and Peak 11308 from just below the start of Chicken-out Ridge



Jeff on COR just before sunrise, Mt. Idaho in the distance.



Jeff on top of COR



Cory Berkebile on the connecting saddle. (not the COR saddle)



Although we didn't use it, Cory Carried a thin 60 meter cord all the way. He found this spot out of the wind behind Chicken-out Saddle where we fueled up for the ridge traverse ahead.



Cory leaving the last of the flat spots and headed for the ridge.



Cory at about the midway point. The wind on the ridge was a steady 15mph, thankfully it wasn't gusty.



Borah's South face



Jeff following the last bit of ridge. Cory traversed below this final section to climb a cool little shot of mixed stuff while Jeff and I stuck to the crest.



Jeff on the head-wall just below the summit. The three of us crowded together for this last steep bit to avoid rock fall.



Jeff on the summit and out of the wind.



Sean and John's register. Obviously this peak doesn't get many visitors, probably due to it's class 4 ridge traverse and adjoining head-wall. I've asked around and haven't found anyone who knows of a previous winter ascent (and that was definitely part of the attraction) but if anyone has different information let me know.



I've always wanted to get a look at the upper reaches of Cedar Creek so we decided to descend the south side of Sacajawea and then hike the length of the creek. This is a shot of Jeff at the Cedar Creek climbing wall. There were several big Ice formations on and around the wall but nothing over about 15-20 feet



This feature, I call it the Iron. (also viewed in the second photo)has always interested me as a possible climb. Has anyone done it?


This was one of those trips where everything went right and waiting for the weather was probably the reason for that. From truck to truck we were on the move for just under 12 hours.

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Joined: June 17th, 2009, 5:29 pm

January 12th, 2012, 5:03 pm #2

Great pictures and TR. Thanks for sharing and keep 'em coming.
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Lost River Loner
Lost River Loner

January 12th, 2012, 5:17 pm #3

On Monday, January the 9th we made a run up Sacajawea peak 11,936' here are some photos.


What a difference a year makes. This shot of Jeff, still below the tree line, was taken last January. The snow at this same elevation is currently only about 14 inches. We ran into deep pockets of snow on the descent this year but it was mostly wind deposited stuff.



The weather was much different on this trip as well. After getting spanked last year by winds (click the link)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... zeVfPrtXgE
we picked the the most wind-free day in the forecast and stuck to it. Beautiful weather combined with a full moon and very little snow made the approach pretty easy.


Jeff Giese and Peak 11308 from just below the start of Chicken-out Ridge



Jeff on COR just before sunrise, Mt. Idaho in the distance.



Jeff on top of COR



Cory Berkebile on the connecting saddle. (not the COR saddle)



Although we didn't use it, Cory Carried a thin 60 meter cord all the way. He found this spot out of the wind behind Chicken-out Saddle where we fueled up for the ridge traverse ahead.



Cory leaving the last of the flat spots and headed for the ridge.



Cory at about the midway point. The wind on the ridge was a steady 15mph, thankfully it wasn't gusty.



Borah's South face



Jeff following the last bit of ridge. Cory traversed below this final section to climb a cool little shot of mixed stuff while Jeff and I stuck to the crest.



Jeff on the head-wall just below the summit. The three of us crowded together for this last steep bit to avoid rock fall.



Jeff on the summit and out of the wind.



Sean and John's register. Obviously this peak doesn't get many visitors, probably due to it's class 4 ridge traverse and adjoining head-wall. I've asked around and haven't found anyone who knows of a previous winter ascent (and that was definitely part of the attraction) but if anyone has different information let me know.



I've always wanted to get a look at the upper reaches of Cedar Creek so we decided to descend the south side of Sacajawea and then hike the length of the creek. This is a shot of Jeff at the Cedar Creek climbing wall. There were several big Ice formations on and around the wall but nothing over about 15-20 feet



This feature, I call it the Iron. (also viewed in the second photo)has always interested me as a possible climb. Has anyone done it?


This was one of those trips where everything went right and waiting for the weather was probably the reason for that. From truck to truck we were on the move for just under 12 hours.
Wes and Co:
Congratulations on a great winter summit! This is one of the more difficult LRR 11ers to climb in calendar winter. As you know, victory is indeed sweetest to those who have experienced defeat! You have definitely "settled the score" on this one. Thanks for the report, and the great photos. It looks like you had a good weather day for the most part. As for previous winter ascents, I remember Dean Lords describing how Mike Howard climbed Sac in February several years ago solo. Dean may want to weigh in and provide more detail. Again, congrats on an outstanding effort! You guys represent what winter mountaineering in Idaho is all about!
Paul
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splattski
splattski

January 12th, 2012, 6:53 pm #4

On Monday, January the 9th we made a run up Sacajawea peak 11,936' here are some photos.


What a difference a year makes. This shot of Jeff, still below the tree line, was taken last January. The snow at this same elevation is currently only about 14 inches. We ran into deep pockets of snow on the descent this year but it was mostly wind deposited stuff.



The weather was much different on this trip as well. After getting spanked last year by winds (click the link)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... zeVfPrtXgE
we picked the the most wind-free day in the forecast and stuck to it. Beautiful weather combined with a full moon and very little snow made the approach pretty easy.


Jeff Giese and Peak 11308 from just below the start of Chicken-out Ridge



Jeff on COR just before sunrise, Mt. Idaho in the distance.



Jeff on top of COR



Cory Berkebile on the connecting saddle. (not the COR saddle)



Although we didn't use it, Cory Carried a thin 60 meter cord all the way. He found this spot out of the wind behind Chicken-out Saddle where we fueled up for the ridge traverse ahead.



Cory leaving the last of the flat spots and headed for the ridge.



Cory at about the midway point. The wind on the ridge was a steady 15mph, thankfully it wasn't gusty.



Borah's South face



Jeff following the last bit of ridge. Cory traversed below this final section to climb a cool little shot of mixed stuff while Jeff and I stuck to the crest.



Jeff on the head-wall just below the summit. The three of us crowded together for this last steep bit to avoid rock fall.



Jeff on the summit and out of the wind.



Sean and John's register. Obviously this peak doesn't get many visitors, probably due to it's class 4 ridge traverse and adjoining head-wall. I've asked around and haven't found anyone who knows of a previous winter ascent (and that was definitely part of the attraction) but if anyone has different information let me know.



I've always wanted to get a look at the upper reaches of Cedar Creek so we decided to descend the south side of Sacajawea and then hike the length of the creek. This is a shot of Jeff at the Cedar Creek climbing wall. There were several big Ice formations on and around the wall but nothing over about 15-20 feet



This feature, I call it the Iron. (also viewed in the second photo)has always interested me as a possible climb. Has anyone done it?


This was one of those trips where everything went right and waiting for the weather was probably the reason for that. From truck to truck we were on the move for just under 12 hours.
Wes-
Very nice. And nice pics.
Brings back memories.- although mine are mostly warm, dry rock and T-shirt weather

What was it like coming off the south side of Sac? I've looked at it a couple times but never tried it.

Also, how was coming down Cedar Creek? When we did it, we stayed high on the 11308 side of the canyon to avoid cliffs (or so I was told- TetonManiac was leading and it worked so I didn't question it).
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Joined: December 20th, 2007, 4:22 pm

January 12th, 2012, 7:01 pm #5

On Monday, January the 9th we made a run up Sacajawea peak 11,936' here are some photos.


What a difference a year makes. This shot of Jeff, still below the tree line, was taken last January. The snow at this same elevation is currently only about 14 inches. We ran into deep pockets of snow on the descent this year but it was mostly wind deposited stuff.



The weather was much different on this trip as well. After getting spanked last year by winds (click the link)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... zeVfPrtXgE
we picked the the most wind-free day in the forecast and stuck to it. Beautiful weather combined with a full moon and very little snow made the approach pretty easy.


Jeff Giese and Peak 11308 from just below the start of Chicken-out Ridge



Jeff on COR just before sunrise, Mt. Idaho in the distance.



Jeff on top of COR



Cory Berkebile on the connecting saddle. (not the COR saddle)



Although we didn't use it, Cory Carried a thin 60 meter cord all the way. He found this spot out of the wind behind Chicken-out Saddle where we fueled up for the ridge traverse ahead.



Cory leaving the last of the flat spots and headed for the ridge.



Cory at about the midway point. The wind on the ridge was a steady 15mph, thankfully it wasn't gusty.



Borah's South face



Jeff following the last bit of ridge. Cory traversed below this final section to climb a cool little shot of mixed stuff while Jeff and I stuck to the crest.



Jeff on the head-wall just below the summit. The three of us crowded together for this last steep bit to avoid rock fall.



Jeff on the summit and out of the wind.



Sean and John's register. Obviously this peak doesn't get many visitors, probably due to it's class 4 ridge traverse and adjoining head-wall. I've asked around and haven't found anyone who knows of a previous winter ascent (and that was definitely part of the attraction) but if anyone has different information let me know.



I've always wanted to get a look at the upper reaches of Cedar Creek so we decided to descend the south side of Sacajawea and then hike the length of the creek. This is a shot of Jeff at the Cedar Creek climbing wall. There were several big Ice formations on and around the wall but nothing over about 15-20 feet



This feature, I call it the Iron. (also viewed in the second photo)has always interested me as a possible climb. Has anyone done it?


This was one of those trips where everything went right and waiting for the weather was probably the reason for that. From truck to truck we were on the move for just under 12 hours.
Beautiful stuff. You're making me feel the cabin fever.
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Joined: December 20th, 2007, 3:45 pm

January 12th, 2012, 7:49 pm #6

On Monday, January the 9th we made a run up Sacajawea peak 11,936' here are some photos.


What a difference a year makes. This shot of Jeff, still below the tree line, was taken last January. The snow at this same elevation is currently only about 14 inches. We ran into deep pockets of snow on the descent this year but it was mostly wind deposited stuff.



The weather was much different on this trip as well. After getting spanked last year by winds (click the link)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... zeVfPrtXgE
we picked the the most wind-free day in the forecast and stuck to it. Beautiful weather combined with a full moon and very little snow made the approach pretty easy.


Jeff Giese and Peak 11308 from just below the start of Chicken-out Ridge



Jeff on COR just before sunrise, Mt. Idaho in the distance.



Jeff on top of COR



Cory Berkebile on the connecting saddle. (not the COR saddle)



Although we didn't use it, Cory Carried a thin 60 meter cord all the way. He found this spot out of the wind behind Chicken-out Saddle where we fueled up for the ridge traverse ahead.



Cory leaving the last of the flat spots and headed for the ridge.



Cory at about the midway point. The wind on the ridge was a steady 15mph, thankfully it wasn't gusty.



Borah's South face



Jeff following the last bit of ridge. Cory traversed below this final section to climb a cool little shot of mixed stuff while Jeff and I stuck to the crest.



Jeff on the head-wall just below the summit. The three of us crowded together for this last steep bit to avoid rock fall.



Jeff on the summit and out of the wind.



Sean and John's register. Obviously this peak doesn't get many visitors, probably due to it's class 4 ridge traverse and adjoining head-wall. I've asked around and haven't found anyone who knows of a previous winter ascent (and that was definitely part of the attraction) but if anyone has different information let me know.



I've always wanted to get a look at the upper reaches of Cedar Creek so we decided to descend the south side of Sacajawea and then hike the length of the creek. This is a shot of Jeff at the Cedar Creek climbing wall. There were several big Ice formations on and around the wall but nothing over about 15-20 feet



This feature, I call it the Iron. (also viewed in the second photo)has always interested me as a possible climb. Has anyone done it?


This was one of those trips where everything went right and waiting for the weather was probably the reason for that. From truck to truck we were on the move for just under 12 hours.
Great job Wes! Any mixed opportunities on the Cedar Creek bolted crag?
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Wes
Wes

January 12th, 2012, 10:44 pm #7

Thanks for the info Paul, Howard would be one to do it! Hopefully Dean or he will chime in.

John, the descent off of the south side was super laid back, and only about 45 degrees. there was plenty of stable snow for a ski descent all the way down to the creek. We had initially hoped to enchain Mt. Idaho, Morrison and 11,308 but decided there wasn't enough time. one could easily descend several hundred feet of scree on the south face and then traverse out onto the Mt. Idaho ridge.
Once we got down to the creek we did a long side-hill hike just above the creek on the south facing slopes to avoid all the boulders and downfall but we eventually had to hit the guts for several hundred yards until we reached the climbing wall. It wasn't easy but the upper part was all new and pretty country for me. Sacajawea could easily be skied in the right conditions but there would have to be a lot more snow for the approach.

Ralph, all of the water seeps were on the bottom parts of the wall. I was hoping to see some longer drips but no such luck. Maybe things would be different in early spring but your timing would have to be perfect.
Thanks All!

Jeff Descending the south side.
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SeanD
SeanD

January 12th, 2012, 11:32 pm #8

On Monday, January the 9th we made a run up Sacajawea peak 11,936' here are some photos.


What a difference a year makes. This shot of Jeff, still below the tree line, was taken last January. The snow at this same elevation is currently only about 14 inches. We ran into deep pockets of snow on the descent this year but it was mostly wind deposited stuff.



The weather was much different on this trip as well. After getting spanked last year by winds (click the link)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... zeVfPrtXgE
we picked the the most wind-free day in the forecast and stuck to it. Beautiful weather combined with a full moon and very little snow made the approach pretty easy.


Jeff Giese and Peak 11308 from just below the start of Chicken-out Ridge



Jeff on COR just before sunrise, Mt. Idaho in the distance.



Jeff on top of COR



Cory Berkebile on the connecting saddle. (not the COR saddle)



Although we didn't use it, Cory Carried a thin 60 meter cord all the way. He found this spot out of the wind behind Chicken-out Saddle where we fueled up for the ridge traverse ahead.



Cory leaving the last of the flat spots and headed for the ridge.



Cory at about the midway point. The wind on the ridge was a steady 15mph, thankfully it wasn't gusty.



Borah's South face



Jeff following the last bit of ridge. Cory traversed below this final section to climb a cool little shot of mixed stuff while Jeff and I stuck to the crest.



Jeff on the head-wall just below the summit. The three of us crowded together for this last steep bit to avoid rock fall.



Jeff on the summit and out of the wind.



Sean and John's register. Obviously this peak doesn't get many visitors, probably due to it's class 4 ridge traverse and adjoining head-wall. I've asked around and haven't found anyone who knows of a previous winter ascent (and that was definitely part of the attraction) but if anyone has different information let me know.



I've always wanted to get a look at the upper reaches of Cedar Creek so we decided to descend the south side of Sacajawea and then hike the length of the creek. This is a shot of Jeff at the Cedar Creek climbing wall. There were several big Ice formations on and around the wall but nothing over about 15-20 feet



This feature, I call it the Iron. (also viewed in the second photo)has always interested me as a possible climb. Has anyone done it?


This was one of those trips where everything went right and waiting for the weather was probably the reason for that. From truck to truck we were on the move for just under 12 hours.
Great job!- very impressive to be able to do this in winter.
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Joined: October 3rd, 2006, 6:10 pm

January 13th, 2012, 6:30 am #9

Unless Mike Howard speaks up, I'd say you got the first winter ascent. Regardless, looked like a great trip. Well done pard. Hope to share a rope with you again some day.
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Joined: November 6th, 2003, 5:22 am

January 13th, 2012, 8:26 pm #10

It was climbed the first week of March of 1997 by my brother Terry and I much the same way Wes did but we used the left side of the avalanche gully to get to chicken out ridge and then we stayed close to the crest of the ridge and descended the west face and traversed back to the south west ridge. Wes we made several attempts also and our sacrifices were finally accepted and we were allowed a beautiful day. Congrats on your Day!!







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