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Silver Star Mountain - Spires Labelled # 6834

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Date: 2005.06.10
Vantage Point: From Washington Pass Overlook

Caption: View northeast from Washington Pass to Silver Star Mountain and the "Wine Spires".

PhotoDescr: Silver Star is a visually striking and complex mountain composed of massive eroded coarse-grained granodiorite with a hidden glaciated NE side (Silver Star Glacier). This high uplift, first ascended in 1926 via the S (right) side, is the ultimate culmination, one could say, of the many snaggle-toothed ridges that are prevalent on the drier side of the Washington Cascades, in particular this region E of the pass just outside the North Cascades Park boundary. Because of convenient highway access, the area is quite popular, with many routes that can be done in a day.

The highest summit on Silver Star by a hair is the East Peak although it doesn't look it from this vantage. Perhaps the best and soundest rock is to be found on the ridge crest to N of W Peak on the spectacular formations known as the Wine Spires of which Pernod is highest. First done in the early 50's, these towers provide interesting moderate to hard slab and crack climbing in a wonderful setting. See Beckey Vol 3: Rainy Pass To Fraser River
 The West Buttress route drops from western summit to right of snow gullies visible at right centre and is rated 5.7-5.8. An easier class 3-4 (scree/talus) scramble route exists up the S flank via upper Willow Creek basin or Cedar Creek (latter out of picture E behind Snagtooth Ridge). Jutting out on the crest farther E, but also invisible in picture is the prominent Silver Horn tower first climbed in July 1953. For those who like it, glaciated terrain and more rock problems abound on the NE side.
 

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