Beaverdam Peak

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Beaverdam asks us to come back on a different day.

Note: click images to see a larger version in a new window

With a less-than-ideal weather forecast, we opted to go for Beaverdam. Shortish hike, easy drive.

So we parked at Lick Creek summit and hiked out past Summit Lake. This is really interesting country, with all sorts of rock ribs and downfall. In fall colors, it was gorgeous. This is looking up to the pass, just left of center, that takes one to ThirtyThree Lake. Tsum Peak on its left, ThirtyThree Peak on the right.

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After crawling over downfall and high-stepping through snow for a while, I was starting to think we had bypassed the meadow. But there it is. Dave's theory, and it's a good one, is that there used to be beaver up in this broad valley. There is certainly a lot of wet ground.

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After you get to the other side of the meadow, the mountain comes sharply into view.

I climbed this back in 2006 with Art. I had forgotten how long/tall/high the boulder field approach was. Back then, we went up the right side, dropped down the left. Note the snow.

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This is a zoom of the right side. Art and I had climbed the gully on the left, which wasn't looking too good today with its slopy slabs. Dave and I decided to go for the right-hand one (with its slopy slabs). Trailhead

But first, we had to navigate up the snowy boulders. This is always tricky because we are seeking a route that works for both us and Ruby.

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Ruby often does well finding her own route.

"Hey, Dad, what's the hold up?"

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The gully was a challenge. There wasn't enough snow to just do it as a snow climb, but there WAS enough snow to make it difficult to figure out what was under the snow. For the most part it wasn't too bad, with small boulders or crunchy snow to stand on. But near the top it turned into slab with some ice.... right about where you needed to leave the corner.

Ruby was waiting patiently on top.

Note: It's steeper than the camera makes it look.

Once on top of the ridge, we found further progress up the ridge blocked by non-Ruby terrain. She can scramble up steep stuff, but there was a short vertical section that was beyond what she could do. Okay, Plan B....no, don't want to downclimb the gully. It took some time before we figured out how to traverse the snowy and exposed ridge in the opposite direction.

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Then we had to downclimb this section to get off. At least there wasn't much snow on it.

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From the base of the mountain, here's the line we took to get off.

It actually wasn't too bad, but definitely not a "hike".

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Once off the actual climbing, we took a break and had a late lunch. Ruby wandered around looking for squirrels. We stared at the cleft in the mountains made by Lick Creek.

From this vantage point, we noticed there was a small lake off to looker's right.

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With time on our hands and mad bushwack skillz, we wandered down through the beaver terrain and found the lake. Photo op!

That's Sawtooth Peak.

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And another perspective on Beaverdam.

In hindsight, probably the best route here is to climb up the way that Art and I had descended in 2006, the low notch in this photo.

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Cool lighting. And a closeup of the notch.

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Go see Dave's most excellent photography at davefaitlemonde.  

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