Mount Rainier Summit Log (#6369)
- Signed By: Mike Moxness
- Date Submitted: May 26, 2004
Chris McGinnis and I climbed Liberty Ridge starting from White River campground. The first day was a short one to Curtis Ridge. Watch the Winthrop Glacier. There are a number of crevasses and, in poor visibility (as we had), they can be alittle tricky. Also, stay relatively low (around 7,000') on Curtis Ridge. That's the easiest ramp down to the Carbon Glacier. The second day we climbed up the Carbon Glacier. Normally, a crossing would be nearly impossible this late due to open crevasses, but 98-99 had been a record snow year. Still, several of our crevasse leaps probably weren't reversible. WEAR HELMETS. Rockfall on the lower Liberty Ridge is serious and continuous! We camped at Thumb Rock, which has plenty of tent space. The usual route goes up from here, but it was very poor, crumbly ice, so we detoured left onto steep snow. Stay on or to the left of the Ridge to avoid rock bands. We hit alot of ice, which slowed things down, so we camped again at about 12,500 just below the bergstrund. There were several little ice steps through here, so bring 2-3 ice screws. We topped out on Liberty Cap early, but very high winds hit us as we traversed around looking for the descent route, the Emmons-Wintrop route. As conditions were deteriorating, we camped just below the summit. The next morning, we opened the tent door to see lines of climbers on guided groups coming up the Emmons-Wintrop route, which was only 30' from our tent. The trail was beaten down like a sidewalk with wands near every crevass. There are quite a few big crevasses around 13,000' on this route and if you didn't have a trail, routefinding would be interesting. Anyway, we made Camp Schurman for lunch and were off the mountain by dinner. Liberty Ridge is a great route.