NW Adventures,  Maps & GPS Tracks

Silver Star (Okanogan). via the Burgundy Col

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Silver Star…the other one. After reading up on Silver Star, and finding out how close to the North Cascades it is, I was really stoked to go and climb it. Our team was me, Chris, Sue and Ember…the Super Team! We decided to do this climb as a one day climb, as most do, plus it’s a 6+ hour drive to, and from, the trailhead. We drove up Saturday, checked out the trailhead, and then found a nice camp spot at Lone Fir Campground.

Sunday morning…up at 3:00am, on the road by 3:50, and hiking by 4:10am. The first segment is a stupid 200’ drop down a junky boulder field to a log crossing over the Early Winters Creek…then for a 1.3-mile huff, gaining 2300’ of elevation…but the views were so awesome, you didn’t feel the pain. The next segment is the scramble up loose “kitty-Litter” scree over solid granite, on and off snow patches, and finally reaching the Burgandy Col. This is where we drop over to the sunny side for a short down climb on snow to the long snow traverse over to the Silver Star glacier. The snow was in great condition being early morning, as we made good time traversing and ascending to the Silver Star Col, between the east and west peaks of Silver Star. Once at the Col, we talked about the summit block scramble, and decided to leave the crampons…which we later regretted because there were still snow patches that would have been the easier route than the rock we were forced onto because the snow patches were still very hard, and in the shade. Staying on rock most of the summit scramble, we got to what we thought was the true summit, but it didn’t feel like the scramble we read about…it felt much harder. After a bit of scouting, Chris got to a place that he could see the true summit, and the route leading to it, so we back tracked, got on route, and made it to the summit. Large patches of Lady Bugs were there to greet us. The actual summit is a large block of granite with a knife edge top, so we took turns pulling ourselves up, and mounting it like a saddle on a horse. The down climb back to the Col was a quiet one, still in awe from the views from the summit.  We were back to the Burgundy Col by 11:45am…and back to the truck at 2:10pm…just 10 hours after leaving it.

Now the long drive home, which included a stop at the Birds View Brewery just west of Concrete.

A Great day climb with a Super Team. Definitely worth the long drive.

Early morning sun on Kangaroo Ridge and The Liberty Bell group
Panorama 5

Super Team summit shot!
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Tower Mountain and Golden Horn…are now on my list
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A view SSW out over the southern end of the North Cascades
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Route up to the Burgundy Col, then around the back side to the summit
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