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 Peak(s):  Mt. Democrat  -  14,148 feet
 Post Date:  01/01/2012
 Date Climbed:   12/26/2011
 Posted By:  Skip

 Winter Ascent, High Winds   

Could not find the Quartzville Creek trailhead. Went instead to the Kite Lake trailhead; was surprised to find the road open almost all the way to the lake. Town of Alma extends about 3 miles up the 6-mile road, so it was plowed to there. Beyond that there were enough tracks to get through with my Jeep, to just shy of the lake.


One other vehicle at the trailhead. Two guys, headed up Democrat but didn't get a mile up before I think they headed back. I don't think they had snowshoes, and the deep soft snow would have been too big a hindrance. Alone on the peaks above Kite Lake.

Planned to do all three (Democrat, Lincoln, Bross) that day. Struggled up Democrat. Deep snows lower down, considerable work even in snowshoes. Aimed for a spot on the ridge above the saddle, then up the ridge to the summit of Democrat. Winds were pretty strong from the west. Spent all of about 5 minutes on the summit, took a few pictures then headed down the ridge.

Winds were screaming across the saddle; could barely stand up. Was knocked off my stance numerous times. Haltingly headed up the ridge toward Lincoln. About halfway up, I gave up (oh, how it pains me to say that) and started my descent. Winds just too strong, and could see them raking the upper stretches of the ridge and Lincoln summit above me.

Struggled down through now-softer snows, back to the vehicle below the lake.

A good day, not a great one. Hard work, for one summit!

 


  • Comments or Questions
iheshvail


good job     2012-01-01 02:16:59
at least your summit is more intersting than 99.9 of the people thats summit. so good job man


awilbur77


Congrats     2012-01-01 11:42:20
In winter, any summit is plenty to be proud of. I skipped Lincoln earlier this year in high winds. We'll have to go get it again sometime in Feb.


Rcizzle


Valuable information     2012-01-01 15:43:33
Thanks for the update!


Gueza


Snow coverage     2012-03-04 11:31:45
Nice job, sounds like a well earned summit.
Is there snow coming off of the summit and if so then how much? What about on the rest of Democrat not just the standard route? Any pictures or beta is appreciated!


alexithymia6


Similar Experience     2012-01-04 16:20:08
I had nearly the exact same experience 2 days after Christmas. Hadn't gotten around to writing a report, but I plan on posting some pics soon. My jeep got about 200 feet short of kite lake and then I summitted Democrat at sunrise without a soul around. As soon as I hit the saddle I was hounded with the winds, too. After being pinned to the rocks from gusts of around 60 knots a third of the way up from the saddle, I reluctantly but intelligently turned around, too. Thanks for the report and God Bless!

In Him,
#6


Skip

Exact Replica     2012-01-04 21:25:21
#6: your report is a virtual carbon copy of my experience the day prior. Probably wise you turned around; the mountains will always be there when you want to go back!



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