Day 4 Summit Day June 27, 2000
night prior to our summit attempt had remained cloudy; and we had
heavy rain from about midnight to 1:00 AM. We left our base
camp at 3:00 AM on June 27th and headed for the North end of Upper
Titcomb Lake and up Dinwoody Pass. As we climbed the pass, and
the sky lightened with daylight approaching (at 5:30 AM), we could
see a cloud ceiling at about 12,500'. The previous night's
storm had dropped about 2" of new snow.
Summit Day Jun 27
Upper Titcomb Lake Base Camp 3:00 AM
Dinwoody Glacier (lowest point) 8:00 AM
Lower Goosneck Glacier
Top of Gooseneck Pinnacle ridge 1:00 PM
Gannett Peak Summit
11,600 Dinwoody Glacier (lowest point) 6:00
13,000 Dinwoody Pass
10,600 Base Camp
looked back down the pass, we had a good view of the clouds above
and the Titcomb Lakes.
reached the top of Dinwoody Pass at 6:00 AM. Visibility was
about 100'. . . our long-anticipated view of Gannett Peak would have
to wait. We knew the way, so we proceeded down to Dinwoody
knew we had to go down and around the rock outcropping at the base
of Mt. Woodrow Wilson and then cross over to Gooseneck Glacier. We
crossed the lower part of Gooseneck Ridge at the horizontal snow
finger at the left center of the picture above (at arrows
>>>). That proved to be the easiest route over to
Gooseneck Glacier. . .
and Jim heading down Dinwoody Pass
picture below, we are above Gooseneck Glacier near the rocks above
Gooseneck Pinnacle. Dan is above, near the rocks, followed by
Jim. The summit snow area is above, and the rocks at the summit are
visible near top center of the photo.
Because of the cloud cover since the previous evening, the
snow remained soft all night and into our summit day. We
climbed the steep Gooseneck Glacier and arrived at the bergschrund
area at around 11:00 AM. Since the snow was well-consolidated,
with only a soft 6" surface layer, we used only crampons and ice
axes to negotiate the glacier. Due to the loose, soft surface
snow, we had to self-arrest only a few times.
bergschrund was partially bridged by snow, since we were there early
in the season, and we had no trouble crossing it. On the way
down, however, Dan's heel punched partially through the snow bridge
and Jim, who was following, looked down through that small window
into blackness of undetermined depth. Jim wisely chose to move
left a few feet and cross at a different spot!
reached the summit at approximately 3:00 PM and watched Joel and Jim
approaching across the distinctive Gannett Peak snow cap. They
were pretending they had adult supervision and were staying away
from that West edge (that's a big first step off to the West!).
and Dan at 13,804 feet at 3:00 PM. The view was awesome . . .
and so are WE!!
and Jim at the top of Wyoming. There was a large thunderstorm
approaching from the West, so we didn't take the time to set up the
tipod for a group photo.
the bottom of Dinwoody Glacier, we turned the corner around this
wild-looking snow formation, which is about 60' from bottom to
top. Above are Dan and Joel heading up toward the "short cut"
which cuts across Gooseneck Pinnacle ridge to Gooseneck
South from the summit of Gannett Peak! Dinwoody Pass is way
down there (toward the right in the picture) with Fremont Peak
behind and to the right from the Pass.
we were on the summit, a serious storm continued to approach
from the West. We could see lightning in the storm and hear
the thunder. After 10 minutes, we headed down toward the rocky
ridge above Gooseneck Pinnacle. When the storm hit, we huddled
down in the rock area, but the rocks were not much protection from
the snow squall. The storm only lasted a few minutes, however,
and then perfect weather returned for our
retraced our route down on our way down from the summit.
Because the snow was well-consolidated, and because there was a
loose top layer of snow a few inches thick, we were able to safely
glissade down much of Gooseneck Glacier (and later down the South
side of Dinwoody Pass). Due to the late hour and the soft
layer of snow, many of our steps down started small avalanches,
obliterating our earlier tracks. The small avalanches made our
sliding easier and quicker, however (and a lot more
reached the top of Dinwoody Pass at 7:30 PM and were back at our
camp at 9:00 PM, tired and happy. It didn't take us long to
crash for the night, though, after an 18-hour summit