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14 NW0808 WILHITE 1024px 3

Glorious Cascade Summer Welcomes Climbers to Mount Triumph

It’s ear­ly August in the Cas­cades and high baro­met­ric pres­sure has been pro­vid­ing an excel­lent weath­er win­dow for rock routes on the high­er peaks. Nate, Sara and I had a great trip on Mount Tri­umph, a Cas­cade clas­sic in a remote set­ting with amaz­ing views of the Pick­ets to the north and the North Cas­cades to the south. The first day we approached via the very scenic Thor­ton Lakes trail. Once at the lakes we said good­bye to the well-trav­eled trail and set off on the climber’s trail, weav­ing our way through scree and steep heather to the col where we would spend the next two nights. 

Tri­umph from camp. NE ridge is the right sky line. Dave Ahrens photo

The next day we head­ed for the sum­mit, mak­ing our way across the glac­i­er and gain­ing the notch after an excit­ing moat cross­ing. We shared the ridge with one oth­er par­ty and made good time up the exposed ridge as it steep­ened to the final head­wall and crux pitch. The final pitch­es went well and had the best rock of the climb. After a bit of steep heather we found our­selves on the summit!

Work­ing up the ridge with the south­ern Pick­ets in the back­ground. Dave Ahrens photo

Sum­mit! Dave Ahrens photo

After numer­ous rap­pers we found our­selves back on the glac­i­er and head­ed back to camp as the full moon began to rise. After 14 hours on the move we were thrilled to be back at the col. The fol­low­ing day we got up and head­ed out, reach­ing the car 5 12 hours lat­er. The decent seemed to go on for­ev­er, but all that was for­got­ten once we reached the car and only splen­did mem­o­ries of a great climb remained.

~MM Guide Dave Ahrens