It’s not often that you get to attempt a climb of Mt. Baker from the lofty elevation of 1300 vertical feet. No, we didn’t push on. Summit fever wasn’t strong enough to pull us up the slabby slopes, against the biting wind to the summit. It was a day to feel small, and to extract hard-earned ecstasy from the beautiful day and the powdery, pristine slopes of a hibernating Cascade giant.
I proposed the seemingly ridiculous idea to Tony that we ought to leave Seattle on Saturday evening, and just start skinning when we got there. I mean, how could it possibly take more than the usual six hours to top out? With the extensive distance and an ample depth of powder snow, it was an arduous push to reach a mere 9000 feet, and we breathlessly relished every minute of the 12 hours it took. The freshies were a simultaneous bane and consolation, such that is only possible on instruments of glisse.
ps. this was the Boulder-Park approach from the Baker Lake side. We had to skin about 4 miles of road to reach the trailhead, and there were downed trees across the road that will need clearing later on.