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Holy Cross

6/25/06:

Mount of the Holy Cross

I left the Halfmoon TH and headed up the North Ridge of Mount of the Holy Cross. I encountered some mosquitos on the ridge just below treeline. A more favorable encounter was a ptarmigan on the ridge just above treeline. I reached the summit in 3 hours and 20 minutes from the TH.

Holy Cross Ridge

I descended Mount of the Holy Cross and climbed Holy Cross Ridge. I was surprised to see two other people on the summit.

13373

I descended Holy Cross Ridge down Halo Ridge to 13373. I was now beginning to get a good view of Mount of the Holy Cross, but could not yet see the Cross Couloir.

13248

Descending 13373 was slightly nerve-racking because it is so steep and loose. In addition, the boulders are huge, so rock fall could result in serious consequences. This section was very short, though. I passed a couple of young men who attempted Holy Cross Ridge and Mount of the Holy Cross with overnight gear. They only made it to 13373. I continued up to 13248 and could now see the Cross Couloir. It took me 5 hours and 38 minutes to get to the summit from the TH. I was surprised to see a summit register on top. However, it is a ranked thirteener coming in at #441.

Mount of the Holy Cross from 13248

13224

I descended 13248, passed the shelter and climbed 13224. This is the southern, lower summit of Notch Mountain.

Notch Mountain

Descending 13224 involved some route finding. At first, I tried to descend the north side, but I knew the route was only rated class 2+, so I knew this wasn't right. From that point, however, I could see that the west side looked like the way to go, so I reascended 13224 and kept looking for a route on the west side of Notch Mountain. I eventually found it and was no harder than class 2+. I continued up to Notch Mountain.

12743

From just below the summit of Notch Mountain, I picked up a trail and followed it to 12743 and descended towards Halfmoon Pass. I abandoned the trail due to snow avoidance and met up with Halfmoon Trail below Halfmoon Pass.

Elevation: 5,827'
Time: 7 hours 57 minutes
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