Dragontail Peak - West Route (via Colchuck Glacier), July 2001
Plans for a day-trip on Dragontail were hatched while sitting in Don Denton's Suburban, staring disapprovingly at the rain pouring down at the Paradise parking lot. We bailed on the Rainier climb and agreed to meet in North Bend at 4:30 the following morning for a climb of Dragontail Peak instead. We reached the trailhead by 9:00am and started booting up the trail moments later. Upon reaching the Colchuck-Dragontail Col we turned left and made a brief detour to the far end of the basin to inspect the sheer cliffs off of Dragontail's southeast side. Convinced that this wasn't the correct route, we angled left (upwards) towards an obvious rock gully and climbed up and over the summit ridge visible from Colchuck Lake.
This trip was unique in that the ascent route was different than the descent route. The hike down from Aasgard Pass to Colchuck Lake was brutal on the legs and ankles. Don and I hardly stopped for a rest this entire trip and yet we still made it out just as darkness was falling. It was a full 12 hour day. We stopped at Visconte's in Leavenworth for some much needed burgers and beer. Once back in the car, Don passed out within five minutes. I successfully fought sleep the entire 2 hour trip back home thanks to the blaring techno and windows open wide. My head hit the pillow finally at 2:30 that morning.
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