On October 3rd, Ryan Irvin (a fellow Next Adventure co-worker) and I were fortunate enough to be in the right place at the right time to score amazing winter snow conditions off of the top of Mt. Hood. I have watched weather patterns on Mt. Hood for years now, and it definitely helps out with getting the goods off of such a tempermental summit.
I've been wanting to do a trip like this for quite awhile now. Splitboards are great fun, everyone knows that.
Climbing makes a man out of you quickly. It's kind of like the army, except you get to make your own decisions.
Even though I have done many mountaineering trips with a splitboard, they have all felt like more of a backcountry run more than an alpine climbing experience. This time, I wanted to switch it up and do a technical climb, with a splitboard as an approach tool.
We started 2.7 miles from the trailhead at a large snow drift. We contemplated trying to dig it out for a bit, but decided to just hoof it. After a 1/2 mile of road walking we were able to skin up and start skiing. I believe this was at about the 2,700 ft. level.
The Cascade volcano climbing season is going to be here real quick! The Next Adventure climbing department has everything you need for any route, from an easy snowshoe up Mt. St. Helens, to a technical climb up Mt. Rainier's Ptarmigan Ridge.
Mt. Hood's north face is a harsh environment in the winter. Strong winds always blow, the sun shines on the face for only two cold hours in the early morning, and constant spindrift avalanches pour down its face. The ice is hard, and the snow is deep. Still, I had an uncontrollable urge to climb this mountain, up the north side, in the winter.