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A Climb of Gunn Peak
Timestamp Free: 2018.12.13 - 11:34:38
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Cascade Range / Washington Cascades
  (1 days)
Participants: Peter Chapman, Michael Stanton
Difficulty: 4: 4th class, routefinding
Battling brush, Peter Chapman and I visit seldom-climbed Gunn Peak.
Gunn Peak had been on my mind for a few years. On many trips to Leavenworth and elsewhere, I'd been impressed by the set of peaks just left of Baring Mountain, visible from the town of Gold Bar. There don't seem to be any trails in this whole block aside from Barclay and Eagle Lakes. In June of 2000, I decided to try for the summit, but I was rudely turned away in the brushy forest near Barclay Creek. Later, having battled oceans of brush on the North Peak of Mt. Index, I felt ready for another go. How could I let this beautiful summit stand unvisited? In the meantime, Jeff Smoot and friends made the climb, advising a bushwhack with a compass baring of North from near the Barclay Lake parking lot. They found very extensive brush above 4,000 ft. I hoped to do the climb earlier when all that was snow covered.

The chance came when Peter Chapman and I had a Sunday free in June. Within minutes, we'd crossed Barclay Creek and gotten into thick stands of alder, devils club, rotten logs and spiders. But we continued following the compass north and finally emerged on an abandoned road. Our directions were vague from here, but amounted to continuing north until reaching a climbers trail on a steep slope. We did this, contouring a tiresome, brushy hillside into older trees. We went a bit east of north though, and almost came to dispair in steep dense brush (did I mention how late our start was? 9:00 am I think). But suddenly Peter espied a trail! After our difficult journey of more than an hour (and about 300 feet elevation gain), this trail looked like a red carpet to the sky. Thankfully, we watched it like a hawk, occasionally losing it but getting it back every time. We climbed for an hour and came to a rocky buttress at about 4,000 ft. elevation.

Here we decided to...

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