Mt Lassen

16-17 Dec 2000 - by Maxym Runov

The weather on Saturday was awesome - calm, clear sky and sun shine. It was snowing few days in a row before the weekend and we got some fresh snow to deal with. We were first climbers after snowfall so it took us about four hours to get to Lake Helen were we camped. There were 2-7 feet of snow at this area. After setting up camp and lunch some of us went for a sunset stroll on ridge behind our camp. Night was slightly windy but pretty warm. Sunday morning began with strong wind gusts and we saw snow being blown away from the ridge on Lassen although sky was almost clear. We hoped that wind will die once sun comes out as it did on Saturday. We headed to upper parking lot at 6:30 AM. As we were getting higher wind blew stronger and some of us began to doubt success of our mission. I decided to ascend first few slopes which were somehow protected by trees. When we came closer to the ridge it became obvious that wind isn't going anywhere any time soon. Only three of us decided to keep on climbing ridge which was pretty much covered with snow. Wind was very strong all the way up to small saddle before the last slop. We took a long rest in that calm area enjoying sun shine and preparing ourselves for the final most windy part of ascend. There were many bare spots on last slope. We summit at 9:50 AM, wind was very strong here and we spend only five minutes on the summit enjoying great visibility and trying to stand straight. We wore snowshoes all the time, crampons were not necessary. We came back to our camp at noon and found that wind is now blowing permanently there trying to blow away Fi and our tent. We rapidly broke off camp and headed home.

Participants: Stephane and Kirsten Mouradian, Fi Verplanke, Heather Kirkby, Martin Braden, Maxym Ribalov, Maxym Runov. Summitting Lassen were Martin, Maxym and Maxym.

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