On Sunday, April 3, we left Portland at 2am with our friend Ryan for a quick lap up the Pearly Gates on Mount Hood. It would be Ryan's first time up Hood and we were all psyched to stand on top of Oregon's highest peak together.
Skinning up the Palmer took little time and we made quick work of it. We swapped to crampons and packed our skis from about 9,500' due to ice and hard snow that was difficult to get traction on with skins.
Due to our early, early arrival, we decided to drop our skis at the Devil's Kitchen and trudged in line up the Hogsback to the base of the Pearly Gates. Psyched to discover that the left side of the Gates were in excellent shape, we charged up- finding good steps and excellent tool placements.
The summit was as beautiful as ever and a good boot pack up to the top made for an easy final stretch of climbing.
Downclimbing the gates was quick and straightforward. We got off the summit after a few photos and deep, full breaths of air at 11,236' and made sure we got back through the steeper bit of climbing when the snow was still relatively solid.
After safely reaching the Hogsback, we decided to take a nap, eat some food, build a mini Stonehenge (thanks for the entertainment, Ryan!), and wait for the snow to melt enough for us to ski down.
All in all, it was an incredible day spent in excellent weather with wonderful friends :)
Equipment List- Pearly Gates (Left Variation)
- Ice Axes
- 1.5L Water each
- Insulated layers
- Soft shell jackets and pants
*Under the conditions that we climbed this route, two ice climbing tools would be preferable
Total Distance: 9.4 Miles
Time: 8 hours Car to Car, (4h 48m to Summit)
Starting Elevation: 5,810’ (Timberline)
Summit Elevation: 11,236’
Elevation Gain: 5,496′