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Mt. Hood | July 2013

KD7LXL's picture
Voice Cellular Coverage: 
Good, very usable
Data Cellular Coverage: 
Good, very usable
Cellular Provider: 
APRS Coverage: 
Good digi echos

This was a fun activation of Mt. Hood. I decided to splurge on weight and bring the FT-817 and Buddipole (no coils) for 6m and 2m SSB. Once I got the antenna up, I found a number of chasers waiting on 50.125, so I'm glad I brought equipment for 6m. The mast was supported by shoving it into the hard snow on the summit.

We started at midnight with seemingly no one in front of us. As we trudged up the ski slope we were passed by snowcat full of guided climbers. I wish they had offered a lift! Once off the groomed ski slope, the snow was hard and we put on our crampons. As we approached the Hogsback, the smell of surful got stronger. Gross. At the Hogsback we found a guided party roping up. There is a crevasse to cross at the Hot Rocks. We decided to go up the Hogsback instead of crossing the Hot Rocks. We traversed left before the bergschrund to continue up the Old Chute. There was a large guided party taking their time with a chute to the left, so we continued straight up, eventually having to follow the Knife Edge to the summit.

All in all it was a quick uneventful climb. We brought a rope but never felt the need to use it. Our crampons were getting excellent purchase on the hard snow and we did not encounter any crevasses or slopes steeper than 35 degrees or so. The slope angle can change with the season, so be prepared for steeper slopes. Be confident in your snow and ice climbing ability and remember rule #1: don't fall (take each step with purpose).