H/FC/C = Hope / Fraser Canyon / Coquihalla Mount Green via West ridge (Skagit Valley) April 19, 2020 - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 04-21-2020, 12:57 AM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Apr 2005
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Default Mount Green via West ridge (Skagit Valley) April 19, 2020

"Green" is one of the most common mountain names in Canada. Named to remember RCAF Pilot Officer George Henry Green, from Sardis. Born at Sardis 18 June 1915 and attended school in Chilliwack; enlisted with the Royal Air Force in June 1939; serving as a Pilot with 70 Squadron when he was killed in action 24 February 1941, age 24. Buried at Naples War Cemetery, Italy, grave IV- S- 18. Survived by parents George William and Eleda Mae Green, Sardis. Some mountain history that fits theme of the named peaks in this area that I snagged off of Bivouac.



My crewing office told me my day off was not approved, then the next morning at 5am they call me and say I have the day off. Gee, thanks, I think?! no plan, no partners, suspect weather forecast. Well why not go back to finish off the Sunshine Valley peaks I guess. I have been getting abit sick and tired of crossing the Sumallo River on foot and then walking many many km's of logging roads so I focused my attention on the West side hearing that the Skagit Valley Road had been repaired. It was in great shape, I could do 50km/hr in my Accord. There are no reports or any info on this side so it would be an adventure day. There were lots and lots of people camping along the Skagit road and looks like people even living near the river. I drove 20km up the road to a pullout and parked at the very base of the West ridge.






I really wasn't sure what to expect, but I wasn't expecting a rotten dry brittle forest. From the get go it was pickup sticks laying every which way. I mean travel wasn't slow, but it wasn't fast either. It was more of a look up ahead and try to find ones you can walk on or under. It was like this for a couple hundred meters gain I will just say that much. At one point I came across a flag or a few flags. I kind of just laughed at whomever put this in trying to say this is the way. There is no way, it is all evil.






After the forest section I busted out into a clearing, I was thinking nice finally some open travel then quickly found out it was a logged section. WTF this high on this slope? It was at this height patchy isothermal snow showed up. It was russian roulette working up this section. But not enough snow for snowshoes yet.






Finally maybe around 1100m or 1200m I got full snow coverage and it was still hard, snowshoes went on ASAP and I could make up some time. Of course there is the odd cliff I had to take off snowshoes for, and then another one higher up in which I guessed the correct side to find a weakness on.




For an unknown ridge things are actually pretty straright forward, it was just the conditions that sucked. I got to the top of the first 1650m bump and got a look at my route. I took red up, and yellow down. Now I was tempted to just do yellow the whole day but thought to myself "nah stay on the ridge, it will be fun, save the elevation you earned" This would prove to be the wrong decision as the upper West ridge was nasty.







The fist hurdle was a steep bump, ice axe out for sure, conditions were great for solid deep steps though and a shot looking back down. Next I would get a look ahead of the West ridge.







I wanted to stay on the ridge proper as much as possible but the cornices were too dangerous. This meant more side hilling. The downside to this was the snow was isothermal on top and still hard enough below that the snowshoes would mush up and end up sliding. It was slow going and tiring trying to dig a side hill snowshoe step in. I ended up doing a minor slide. After this I had to post hole the ridge in deep mushy bucket steps. As much as this sucked, it was still the safer option.








Finally with a sigh of relief I topped out on the West ridge where it connects with the South ridge to the summit and Forddred.







From here it was minimal gain and just a traversing ridge to the summit. The alpine always washing away the pain of the forest. Near the top there were two bumps, so I walked over to both of them just to be sure. Some big cornices on this trip. I prefer to not see any cornices though. I saw Steven Song's snowshoes tracks most likely and then a fresh set of ski tracks probably from Saturday.








The only reason I kept going up the West ridge was I knew I wouldn't have to go back down it, my intention was to take the yellow route that I saw earlier on the ridge. This proved to be a beautiful descent, the terrain was mellow, the sun was out, the snow was soaking wet and heavy. This is the part of the day that can salvage a not so nice ascent.









After rejoing the mid section of the West ridge, the sky was starting to open up since my whole ascent was in the clouds. As I neared the entry to the steep forest section I was able to listen to the soothing sounds of shotguns and rifles going off on the valley floor.






It's a good thing I'm not fat. These trees were so brittle I could snap whatever I wanted and even sometimes just push them over out of my way. I managed to avoid most of the logged section on the descent. An example of knowing a route and not knowing a route. 5hrs 30min up, Just over 3hrs down.





I popped out of the forest at my car, no mountain gals to drink with today so I made some new friends. Blood it's in you to give. Just trying to give him a buzz off the Old Yale German Pils I was celebrating with.



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Last edited by Spectrum; 04-21-2020 at 01:06 AM.
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 04-23-2020, 09:08 PM
Summit Master
 
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That forest looks not pleasing. Well done and thanks for the update on the Skagit road!
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 05-12-2020, 02:34 AM
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Thanks for update on the repaired road, great to knw. Very interesting read of how you approached your hike and completed it.

Nicely done...


K

Hiking is what keeps you young of mind and heart. When the going gets tough, the tough get going..............
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