I’ve been thinking about my next big trip, and I think I’ve found it.
I have snow gear I need to test out and practice with, and a winter summit of Mt St Helens is perfect. I’m debating bringing my snowboard along for the ride, but it’s been so long since I’ve used it that I might be better off just glissading.. I dunno.
I went through a bit of heartbreak this past spring learning that you needed to fight tooth and nail to get a permit to climb this mountain during the summer. I recently read a story posted by a fellow blogger about climbing it during the winter and wondered if the permit process is easier during the off-season. My answer at the moment is inconclusive, but according to the WTA (Washington Trail Association):
“Winter climbers can self-issue their permits at the Climber’s Bivouac trailhead. No fee is required for permits between November 1 and March 31”
So it looks like it might be pretty simple to get out there. I can go when the sky is clear and the snow is stable. I still want to double check this to be sure so I don’t drive all the way down there to be denied in the face by a ranger.
I’m going to look at what the best days to do this are. I’m crossing my fingers hoping it coincides with my Christmas break, but the weather looks poor. Might have to wait until late January or early February. Jerk weather.