Glacier Peak Ski – Cool Glacier Headwall Solo: Mountain Yelp Review (5 Star)

I have 9 minutes remaining on my lunch break so this one is going to be a quick and dirty Mountain Yelp Review. In sum: it was awesome.

4th of July solo summit!

I didn’t run my GPS watch on the way in because I wanted to feel absolutely zero pressure to move fast, take breaks, impress anyone, etc. All I wanted to do was drag my heavy skis out to a beautiful remote place and enjoy the ride.

I opted for the camp at 7200′ and was glad that I did. This was a 3-day hiatus from crazy COVID world; a breakup; and other shenanigans. It was a reprieve.

Day one, I walked. I ate. I read a few pages in my book. And then I took 3 naps and slept through the night. It was lovely.

Day two, I woke up in a cloud. I referenced Martin Volken’s beta and ended up walking all by my lonesome up the Suiattle Glacier to the col between the Disappointment Cleaver and Glacier Peak. I spent the majority of the ascent in a cloud and wrapped up in my thoughts. Just as I got to the col, the sun popped, god smiled down upon me and if there were animals on the mountain they would’ve started singing like something out of Snow White.

I topped out just before 12pm after leaving camp around 7:30. I stomped around and matched some rock formations to photos I’d taken beneath the summit block. Clicked into my skis and went for it.

The Cool Glacier Headwall is front and center.

I put the first tracks on the Cool Glacier Headwall. It was steep, maybe just shy of 50 degrees. The corn was just passing perfect and bordering on slush. But I managed to find my exit through the bergshrund and linked up with the rest of the route that I had climbed earlier. I had to transition to get back to camp twice.

As I skied away from the shrund, I couldn’t help but scream for joy since this was one of my most impressive (to myself) ski descents yet. And I was stoked that I pulled it off solo.

TIME IS UP! Go get it. I highly recommend. It was worth the ski carry.

Published by mallorie estenson

Mallorie is an alpine guide, writer and climber based in Seattle, WA.

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