Leif Whittaker and team didn’t achieve their ultimate goal to summit and descend by ski/snowboard from Mount Anderson, but they witnessed the winter wilderness in Washington State’s Olympic Mountain Range that few have seen.
By Leif Whittaker The summit is flanked with debris. Avalanche crowns cut across couloirs, depositing snow-boulders into gullies and basins like a knocked-over bookshelf. These intimidating features, still miles away, are starkly visible from the edge of Honeymoon Meadows.
Leif Whittaker and team attempt a winter summit of Mt. Anderson in Washington’s Olympic Mountain Range, but are challenged by difficult conditions for a summit bid.
Freya Fennwood and Leif Whittaker produced this video, shot on their way to climb and ski Mt. Anderson in the heart of the Olympic Mountains.
By Leif Whittaker Our heaviest sled is broken. The aluminum has cracked at the rivet where the haul-bars attach to the plastic hull. Heavy snowflakes fill the air like ash from a volcanic eruption, covering our jackets in sopping white blankets as we huddle together and discuss our options, which are few.
By Leif Whittaker A snowplow pushes branches to the edge of the rain-soaked pavement. There isn’t a trace of actual snow on the ground, just brown and green debris that the wind has cleaved off the trees.
Leif Whittaker and First Ascent guide Dave Hahn describe the severe weather that nearly jeopardized their summit attempt and the window of opportunity that afforded their success. See Leif’s summit and some amazing scenery from the top of the world in this video recap.