White Chuck has been on my list since seeing it from Sloan a few years ago. It is located on the Mountain Loop Highway just past Darrington and is on my climbing lists of the Mountaineers Everett Peaks and Smoots List. White Chuck, Pugh, and Sloan look like shark fins breaching the sky and clouds. I had a good view of White Chuck earlier in the season from Mount Dickerson, which both KT and I hiked, so we thought it was about time to climb White Chuck. We got a late start and hit the trail about 1:30PM. This would be good as we were later treated to a fantastic sunset.
We approached the rocky slabs and made our way up. These are not that steep but a bit tricky with the footwork as there was a lot of loose gravel and sand. We would work our way above these slabs to heather slopes where we would snake our way up, bypassing cliffs and attaining higher ground above steep cliffs.
Scrambling to the summit. It was about here that we went off route, and instead of following a decent path on a ledge to the notch and summit, we went up to the left and climbed some steep rock to a false summit. We could not proceed safely to the correct path about 50 feet below us and were tired as the scrambling was sketchy as each rock and hold seemed loose, unstable, and downright crap. We took a breather, downclimbed to where we missed the path and continued upwards.
The “Notch” was a straightforward 10-foot downclimb to the saddle before the final push to the summit.
It’s scramble time!
KT and I made our way to the saddle and descended the heather slopes, where we paused to enjoy the setting sun. I really loved this hike for the light at the end of the day.