Hike North Idaho

Mt. Adams

August 21, 2015

Author: Don Otis

12,236' Mt. Adams is the second largest peak in the Northwest behind Mt. Rainier. Although it is not a technical peak it is 6800' of vertical gain from the trailhead. Landon Otis, Jeff Beeman, Ken Emerson, and I reached the summit on a near perfect May 2 day with clear skies. The summit was windblown and desperately cold -- single digits with wind-chill. The best part (other than reaching the top) is the glissade down. We had nearly 2000' of vertical. You need crampons and ice axe but no rope. The best time of the year to climb is the spring so go prepared for cool weather. And be sure to use plenty sunscreen. The sun reflects off the glacier and snow -- we found out the hard way and should have known better. Check the forecast before going because getting stuck on a high volcano in poor visibility is an easy way to get lost. Overall, this was one of the best climbs I have done in years -- fun, challenging, and with views toward Rainier, Mt. St. Helens, and Mt. Hood.

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