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Mount Baker via the standard Coleman-Deming route
Timestamp Free: 2020.02.24 - 07:14:23
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Cascade Range / Washington Cascades
  (1 days)     Elevation Gain: 2200m
Participants: Thomas Kutter, Marta, Ian, Stefan Reinker
Difficulty: 3: Used ropes in case of crevasses. Used skis and walked last 500m to summit.
A description of the Standard Coleman-Demin route on Mount Baker. Detailed waypoints and photo.
In the spring, when the road to the Heliotrope parking lot is free of snow, Mount Baker can be ascended on skis as a long day trip. The advantage of leaving tents and sleeping bags at home or in the car is offset by almost 2200 m elevation gain and the need to carry skis in the forest and on the steeper portions of the Roman Wall. But the avoidance of an overnighter at the tent city at Heliotrope Ridge with ususally dozens of tents and piles of s**t as well as a long downhill run make it all worth it.

We carcamped at the Heliotrope Ridge Trailhead parking lot and were on the hiking trail at 7:00. Continuous snow started after about an hour of walking near treeline where we were able to put the skis on. For the ascent of a moraine and the lower part of Coleman glacier no rope up was necessary because all the lower crevasses were filled in. After an early lunch break near the Black Buttes we roped up and continued up the glacier where now some crevasses and seracs stuck out.

When we reached the ridge between the Coleman and Deming glaciers, the initially clear weather had turned and we were engulfed in clouds. The ridge still held snow but because of the steepness and rocks sticking out we shouldered our skis and started walking up towards the Roman Wall. After a strenuous slog up the last 500 m on steep snow we reached the summit plateau around 16:30. By that time the clouds were thick and it had started to snow. Nevertheless, we hung out for a while hoping to catch some views but to no avail. For the way back in such bad visibility, detailed waypoints proved very useful to follow the uptracks around the crevasses.

Snow conditions were generally very good with only some icy sections on the Coleman glacier and no apparent avalanche activity. Once out of the peak...

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