My second visit to this mountain, took this trip to share the delightful Hannegan Valley trail and the climb up the slopes, and snows of Mount Ruth.
I had set a flexible date; Saturday or Sunday, depending on weather. Back and forth it swung... finally called for Saturday (July 16) to do this trip. A few other people could do only Sunday, so unfortunately they could not make Saturday.
Three of us: Paul, Eugene, and I met at Bromley's south of the border near 6:30 am...to car pool and head out.
On our drive up on Mt. Baker the last 15 minutes to the trailhead, it rained a bit of a deluge. Schee,,,, raingear time... let alone dry and sun ??
Rain stopped as soon as we parked; and hence did not suffer the rain on the trail. Cloudy and a little mist fall.. Enjoyed the great walk up the fine "cleared" trail all the way to the Hannegan Pass; from there was that 150 meters elevation gain in a trail that resembled a deep ditch going up the north side of that ridge extending northward from Mt. Ruth.
Snow started at top of this trail; and crampons went on for 5 minutes; then off for a stretch, before putting them back on for the final 450 meters of elevation up Ruth Summit. Cloudy all the time, and zilch on the views... maybe a 100 meters of visibility. Ran a little low of energy approaching the summit; stopped as my face felt very hot even with the cloud. Put on sunscreen as I could feel my face start to burn...........
At the summit there were a few partial breaks in the cloud, sun attempted to come out. Stayed on 1/2 hour to have a partial lunch, then back down. ... The clay soil in that trail ditch makes for very greasy boot sliding in spots.
A good walk back on the enjoyable pass to valley trail on our return. Lots of flowers; especially Indian Paintbrush and a purple flower I am not able to identify .
Made the trip a lot quicker than last time; less snow travel; less photo-taking, and not having to deal with obstacles such as fallen rocks, dirt piles, and fallen trees.... trail maintenance since last visit, 10 weeks earlier, has been awesome. 8:30 - 6:30 pm car to car including lunch, and various tops. 1400 meters net elevation gain/ 22 km return (gps).
Here are the photos; I think they give a good indication of the way:
Starting up the valley:
Compared to 10 weeks earlier, the snow fans have almost melted away.
Two climbers were practicing with their rope, going down the steep slope.
Three of us @ the summit:
A very rare flower on the summit, no other of its kind there..
Descending, ridge below... best view of the day, there are people down there.
A pretty, but very common purple flower lining the trail a good part of the way..
Enjoying the green valley, almost back to trailhead. A lot more pleasant than being in open on a hot summer day..