|Peak:||Mt. Arkansas (13er)|
|Route:||East Slopes (Snow!) and N ridge|
|Posted By:||Matt Lemke|
|Date of Info:||04/10/2012|
Went out this morning and climbed Mount Arkansas. Parked at Fremont Pass and walked some old roads and train tracks around the base of the NE ridge on firm snow. Continued west and started climbing some very nice and firm snow slopes just north of the North Couloir. We reached 45 degrees for a while but it averaged about 40 degrees. We hit the north ridge right where the North and NE ridges meet and continued south to the summit. This traverse was easy with only one real class 3 difficulty which could have been completely avoided on the ridges‘ west side. We saw the prints of people who had recently come up the North couloir which dumps out very near the true summit. Very warm morning allowed us to sit on the summit and enjoy the views for about 45 minutes while we waited for the large snow slopes just south of the summit to soften a little more. We then traversed a short distance to the first saddle south of Arkansas towards Tweto and glissaded all the way back to the valley with very good snow coverage. This was FUN!
The hike back was warm...but we only postholed a few times.
The views of all the Mosquito Peaks were great as I looked back at what Jed and I had done last Friday...all those peaks! Arkansas was the one we didn‘t get hence why I did it this morning.
For anyone looking to do some good cramponing on good snow, Arkansas‘ East side was filled with many great options ranging from the 50 degree North couloir to 45 degree snow covered slopes to 40 degree snow slopes. A nice snow gully also led up the NE ridge about halfway up that someone could do. The routes on this peak were endless annd this would be a great place to practice some snow climbing/self arresting with all the options. It is so close to Highway 91 as well which allows you to get crackin‘ on the good stuff with a minimal approach.
Word of advice though...do not head through the trees westward to get to Arkansas‘ west slopes. You don‘t wanna go there! Stay in the valley, wlak a short ways up the 4WD road and get to the small tarn below the east slopes for some great snow climbing options.
First photo shows Arkansas Panorama with the North couloir
Second one is looking down the NE ridge from where we hit the ridge
Third one looks south along the N ridge towards summit
Forth one is a look at our great glissade on the slopes just south of the summit
Photos (click for slideshow):