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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    733

    Snoqualmie Pass traverse, From Alpental to Granite Mountain via Kaleetan

    After looking at the weather forecast it seemed we had a two day break in between unstable weather patterns so John (Jcocci on splitboard.com) and I decided to take advantage of blue skies and corn in the Snoqualmie pass area. We passed a few ideas back and forth “I have always wanted to do Kaleetan but I have never done Granite either” then we came up with the idea of doing them both. We were inspired by a trip Monika and Dave Perkins did last year in which you started off at the Alpental parking lot then do a long traverse to the Granite mountain parking lot while hitting Chair peak col, Kaleetan and Granite along the way. It was over 12 miles but well worth the effort.

    Thursday April 30th

    Hiking the Alpy B.C. to source lake, Chair Peak in the background.

    (Photo by John)
    Traversing into the Pineapple basin

    (Photo by John)
    John Skinning with Bryant peak in the background


    To access the Bryant/ Chair peak col requires climbing a steep semi exposed face so we switched over to Ice axes and Crampons for our ascent

    Climbing up to the col in the early morning Mank conditions

    (Photo by John)
    Climbing up the final pitch with Snoqualmie Mountain in the Background

    (Photo by John)
    After accessing the Col we rode down to Melakwa Lake in Pre corn conditions

    (Photo by John)
    John riding down onto Melakwa Lake

    Our first view of Kaleetan looking up the Melakwa lake basin

    From here we decided to head up to Melakwa pass so we could see what would be the best approach to Kaleetan
    John skinning up the Valley
    John standing at the pass looking at the East face of Kaleetan

    Glacier Peak came into view

    After finding the least sketch approach to the Summit of Kaleetan we switch over to crampons and Ice axes again and started climbing

    (Photo by John)
    John climbing up with Snow Lake in the valley bellow and Big Snow Mountain in the Distance

    Summiting the col to access Kaleetans summit chair peak in the background

    (Photo by John)
    Hiking the final pitch to access the summit of Kaleetan

    Hiking up with our ski line and slogging path up to Granite below

    (Photo by John)
    Some views from the summit (6259 feet)

    (Photo by John)

    The ride down Kaleetan was not quite corn, but not quite Mank

    (Photo by John)

    (Photo by John)


    (Photo by John)



    (Photo by John)



    We rode almost 3’000 vert all the way down through old growth timber to around 3’400 feet at the start of the Pratt River

    (Photo by John)
    From here we traversed a small ridge then followed the main drainage up numerous lakes to access the summit of Granite.
    Checking the Map and resting in the sunshine at upper Tuscohatchie Lake

    (Photo by John)
    John skinning across the lake

    John skinning up the Eastern ridge to gain access to the summit of Granite

    After miles and miles of skinning we finally made it to the Summit of Granite

    (Photo by John)
    Skinning off the summit with Kaleetan to the left and Chair peak to the right

    (Photo by John)
    John on the summit with the west bowl begging for some tracks
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    733
    Looking back at Snoqualmie Mountain to the left and Over Coat peak in the distance

    (Photo by John)
    One last look before descending, Kaleetan to the left chair peak to the right

    We were exhausted from the long trip so we decided to rip down the southern face of granite non stop. The corn for the first 1’500 feet was perfect, stable, steep corn by far the best run off the day. After that it was 500 feet of Avy debris riding then bushwhacking through dense forest until we reached the trail and hiked out the last 500 vert.
    Luckily while we were riding down Brad (Moscawulff on turns-all-year) was hiking up the ridge and got a few shots of us. Thanks Brad


    It’s a brutal tour but well worth it
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Udapimp
    Posts
    342
    Nice work, makes me miss living on the pass at alpental.
    embrace the gape
    and believe

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    NorCal
    Posts
    2,489
    Nice pics. I was really confused at first - thinking how could there be any snow at 3,400 feet at the river (much less at 6,200 feet at the summits).

    Then I went back and saw that this was from April 30th. Makes sense now.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Alpy/Stevens
    Posts
    1,314
    Damn. Nice work.
    eating and sleeping is serious business

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    1,594
    Thanks for posting all of the pics, they were fun to look at.

    I've always wanted to hike in to the Pratt with my kayak. There's good class IV whitewater further down apparently.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    PNW
    Posts
    1,320
    I've always wanted to do an Alpy to I90 tour similar to your trip. 12 miles but how long did it take you guys?

    nice work...(per usual for you and your crew)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    544
    priceless.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Eburg
    Posts
    10,116
    Nice work and great pics.

    SeatownSlackey, I can report from personal experience that this is a grunt of a route, and that one should expect to have rubber legs for the ski down Granite. Note that the first part of Kyle's route -- from Alpy Lot 4 over Bryant Col to Melakwa Lake and halfway to Melakwa Pass -- is part of the classic Chair Peak circumnvag tour (the beginning or end of the tour, depending on whether one does it clockwise or counterclockwise).

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    733
    If im correct it was about 11 hours long and something like 12 miles. Its a awesome tour because you really get to see whats west of Alpental.
    AKA the last few good backcountry peaks before the lower mountains.

    Kaleetan is a wild peak and one I have wanted to tackle for a long time.
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