Day 2 Wind River High Route – Slip and Slide

Is this really a good life decision for me to be out here?
~from the documentary “A Sense of Direction – A 1200 mile walk on the Pacific Northwest Trail”

July 24
Saddle below Wind River Peak to Big Sandy Lake – 8.2 miles

Route: Saddle below Wind River Peak * top of Wind River Peak * down the west gully * Black Joe Lake * Big Sandy Lake

Photo journal:

Sunrise on Ridge before the climb up Wind River Peak ~ Why Not and Wired
Sunrise on Ridge before the climb up Wind River Peak ~ Why Not and Wired
Walking on the alpine tundra ~ Why Not and Wired
Walking on the alpine tundra
Boulder Hopping up Wind River Peak ~ Why Not
Boulder Hopping up Wind River Peak ~ Why Not
First glimpse of Wind River Peak ~ Why Not and Wired
First glimpse of Wind River Peak
Heading to the top on boulders and snow
Heading to the top on boulders and snow
Rockin' on the summit of Wind River Peak
Rockin’ on the summit of Wind River Peak
First peak of the route ~ Why Not, Rockin' and Wired
First peak of the route ~ Why Not, Rockin’ and Wired
Why Not on Summit of Wind River Peak
Why Not on Summit of Wind River Peak
Northern view from the top
Northern view from the top
Wired heading down toward our goal ~ descending the west gully off Wind River Peak
Wired heading down toward our goal ~ descending the west gully off Wind River Peak
First view of the west gully
First view of the west gully
Route down ~ Technically not difficult, but the amount of loose rock and big boulders over the entire route was very risky
Route down ~ Technically not difficult, but the amount of loose rock and big boulders over the entire route was very risky
We avoided class 3 ledges on the lower half by straddling snow and rock ~ Here is Wired using the technique
We avoided class 3 ledges on the lower half by straddling snow and rock ~ Here is Wired using the technique
Why Not and Wired coming down off the ledges
Why Not and Wired coming down off the ledges
Why Not negotiating down Icy snow, loose rocks, and steep terrain
Why Not negotiating down icy snow, loose rocks, and steep terrain
At the bottom of the gully ~ The route off West WindPeak, as Andrew Skurka describes IS difficult and the most formidable on the route. I agree. The descent was not one I would repeat. Not worth the risk.
At the bottom of the gully ~ The route off West Wind Peak, as Andrew Skurka describes IS difficult and the most formidable on the route. I agree. The descent was not one I would repeat. Not worth the risk.
Descending down on grassy ramps, our favorite!
Descending down on grassy ramps, our favorite!
Tarn on the way to Black Joe Lake
Tarn on the way to Black Joe Lake
Haystack Mountain (left) where Jacob and Kit are climbing today
Haystack Mountain (left) where Jacob and Kit are climbing today
Sunset from our camp ~ Big Sandy Lake
Sunset from our camp ~ Big Sandy Lake

 

GEAR OF THE DAY
Outdoor Research Chroma Full Sun Gloves

I usually wear fingerless sun gloves, but for our trips this summer I needed more protection on my fingertips when hiking through granite boulders. Just touching the rough granite a few times will rub the skin right off the tips of the fingers, cause cracks, and just plain old pain. The OR gloves have protected my hands from the sun and rough rocks and they have lasted without getting holes in the fingertips thanks to the leather palms.

Top of glove ~ I bought a medium so the gloves would be easy to take off and on and would be a bit cooler.
Top of glove ~ I bought a medium so the gloves would be easy to take off and on and would be a bit cooler.
Hardly any wear after grabbing many boulders
Hardly any wear after grabbing many boulders

8 Comments

  1. Wow.. wow wow wow.. (yeah, I’m not a writer) but in my very limited hikes on what I consider steep trails, I have tried to capture the pitch, the steepness, the fear, the out of breathness of the descent or ascent only to have it look almost level on film… sooooo when I look at your pictures and it looks STEEP, I multiply it times one hundred for how steep it really must have been and then I say Wow.. wow wow wow. I love the adventures of Why Not, Rockin’ and Wired!!!

    • Christy "Rockin'" Rosander

      LeAnn,
      You are right it is so hard to really capture the pitch of terrain. Often times when things are the hardest and most daring, the last thing you do is get your camera out. We love having you along.

  2. Gary Goldfain

    Greetings.
    Just discovered your blog today…and love it.
    My brother and I are planning to hike the L2H this September.
    Is there any chance I could contact you with a few logistics and route questions.
    Last year we hiked portions to scope it out.
    Gary

  3. Wow, thanks for profiling the sun gloves. I like to use gloves and always have a pair with me. For years I used a pair of REI black lycra liner gloves and they finally gave way after much use on granite. I also used them when using trekking poles and were a great buffer from the pole grips and of course blocked the sun as well.

    I like these gloves as they are tougher with the leather on the palms. They have great reviews on Amazon and now from you so I may just have to give them a try.

    I know you love all the difficult climbing and Class 3 stuff so seeing you talk about how difficult this day was I know it truly must have been tough. Glad you and your crew are safe!

    • Christy "Rockin'" Rosander

      It was a descent that moved a lot. I have since learned that areas where glaciers have melted, the rock isn’t settled. This was one of those.

      For granite bouldering, Gorilla Grip gloves from the hardware store work great also. They do not have sun protective fabric though.

      • I remember you using Gorilla Gloves lately. Did you find that you were less protected from a sun perspective?

        Ya, I’d be unhappy with the sketchy moving terrain. Glad you made it out without incident on this one.

        • Christy "Rockin'" Rosander

          Gorilla Grip gloves do not have an SPF. There is a tight mesh on the top which adds to breathability. Sunscreen on the hands would be needed if you wore them all day.

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