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The East Ridge of MacDonald
Timestamp Free: 2020.10.22 - 05:37:22
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Cascade Range / Canadian Cascades / Skagit Range
Participants: Jordan Peters, Erika Tarris
Difficulty: 5: The route is graded five pitches of 5.4 in Beckey's book. I'd say three pitches of actual climbing.
East buttress of Macdonald in a leisurely two days, a few pitches of nice class 5 rock, but mostly fourth class heather.
After spending the first few days of our vacation waiting by the phone to see if I got a job in Shangri-la (Squamish) -- which I didn't -- Erika and I headed off to an obscure corner of the Bridge River area to have a look at some even more obscure routes. After camping for three days in horsefly and moose (!) infested swamps and getting kicked off a few loose and scary things, we ran out of Deet (pretty sad when the bugs are so bad that the quantity of repellent determines your length of stay!) and headed home in search of more pedestrian and travelled adventures. We needed a nice two day trip involving some rock but somewhere close and without an involving approach. I had always wanted to do the east ridge of MacDonald and though I had seen it on club schedules, had not actually heard what it was like. The view up from Chilliwack Lake makes it look quite inviting too.
So off we went with some refreshingly light packs up the Radium Lake trail. I had never had the pleasure of hiking this trail before and was looking forward to a nice dip in Radium Lake after a few hours of hiking (I've managed a swim out of every trip this year since April), though it sure looked small on the map. Yes, of course, those of you who know the lake are all laughing right now because Radium Lake is a muddy, mosquito infested sinkhole of a lake. Oh well, off we went up to the Webb-MacDonald col along a surprisingly well-travelled trail. The clouds started to come in as we set up a bivy and made some soup, watching a pair of raptors circle and shreik above Webb. About eight P.M. I convinced Erika to go for a stroll up Webb with the promise that the summit would be above the clouds (I doubted it) and sure enough, the clouds parted to give us one of those great...
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