Cascade Mountain Winter Climb
January 31st, 2014
On 10 January 2014, to celebrate the new year, I climbed Mount Pilchuck 5,341 feet in the Washington State Cascade Range. This is a mountain we look at every day from our home in Snohomish. Each winter I make it my mid-winter climb.

Although not an extremely high mountain, the steep slopes are prone to avalanches. There is also a constant need to watch for sudden precipitous drop-offs that plunge down hundreds of feet.

This time I had to wait for a calm weather window. There was dense fog at the lower elevations, making it a challenge to stay on the safest winter climbing route and avoid the avalanche slopes that were covered in deep snow.

Once I reached the 4,000-foot level, I climbed in brilliant sunshine. The upper slopes were icy forcing me to wear crampons to increase safety and to avoid sudden slides. After a few minutes on the windy summit I hurried down to beat the approaching darkness and even more fog that was now closing in.

All in all, it was a great day of Cascade mountain winter climbing.
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