Fadgen's Adventures

Fadgen's Adventures
Green Creek Lake

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Petros Peak 11050 Feet

The approach to Petros Peak

While we were in Washington DC last week I received a text from Dan Robbins wondering if we were up for a climb the following week.  After swapping a few texts we decided on Tuesday to try Petros Peak.  Even though Tuesday was the day I was supposed to return to work, I really needed another day off to clear my mind.  Nothing like being up on a peak to clear the images and sounds of a tremendous amount of people surrounding you.

We met up with Dan and John Platt at 5AM Tuesday morning for the 3.5 hour drive to the Northern Lost River mountains.  We decided to roughly follow the route John had attempted earlier in the year, but with a different take off point.   As it turned out this was a great idea as we were able to drive up to approximately 7500 feet and had a short approach hike before the trail turned steep.

John and Dylan surveying the route

Getting into a bit of snow now.

The weather was absolutely gorgeous as we headed up the mountain.  After the first hour we had gained over 1000 feet and were well above the trees looking at a tremendous amount of scree on the steepening slope.  At this point John, Dylan and I decided to move over to some snow while Dan figured the scree wasn't looking too bad.

We stopped to put on the crampons and headed up the mountain.  Since the snow had not frozen the previous night it was not very firm, but was still slightly consolidated allowing John to easily take the lead and kick steps for us.  The slope was approaching 40 degrees making for a fun climb even though our ice axes easily slipped down to the head.  It didn't take us too long to reach the top of the ridge where we stopped to wait for Dan as he struggled up the nasty scree.  I think we made the better choice! 
Dan heading up the scree with Dickey Peak in the background.
Once on the ridge we had a relatively easy stroll up the last 600 feet across a broad snow filled field.  We reached the summit in a little over three hours in fantastic weather.  There we all relaxed in the windless sunshine and had a leisurely lunch. 

Dan looking at the large cornice off the summit

Summit shot
View to the North
After 45 minutes or so we figured we had better get off the summit before the snow turned to mush.  The walk down the large snow field was pretty easy with minimal sinking.  Once we came to the steep snow field it was a little different story.  The warm afternoon had made the snow a little rotten.  John took a quick survey and decided we should just follow our steps down.  The was a little easier said than done as I kept blowing out the snow and sinking to my knees.  After what seemed like an hour we were all on the scree slope.

Looking back up at the summit across the snow field

Heading down the scree before the last snow slope.
Once down below the bad scree we decided to find an easier way down the steep slope and veered off into a broad gully.  We were able to plunge step down this gully and made fast time to the bottom.  There had been a tremendous avalanche sometime that winter/spring that deposited debris almost all the way to the car.  We followed this draw and we were continuously amazed at the amount of snow still standing from the avalanche.

Dylan standing next to an avalanche debris wall

We made it back to the car at approximately 3:30 in warm sunshine.  Total time was 6 1/2 hours with over 3700 feet climbed and 6 miles travelled.  All in all a great day to be in the mountains with my son and good friends.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Glad to see you rock jocks are still at it. The picture of Dan and the cornice makes me dizzy just looking at it. You guys have some great adventures that are deffinitely out of my league. Hope to see you guys this summer.

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A team of adventurers consisting of John, Tamara, Taylor, Dylan, and Shadow Fadgen