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Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress

North Cascades National Park

North Cascades, Washington

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Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress

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  • A scenic 2.5-hour boat ride from Chelan to Stehekin. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Stehekin is a picturesque town located on the Northern Edge of Lake Chelan. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Hiking along the road for the first couple of miles saves time and elevation. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Abundant huckleberries line the trail.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Bridge Creek Campground a few miles in provides a good rest. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • First fews of Mount Goode from the Pacific Crest Trail.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Approaching the North Fork of Bridge Creek junction. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • After crossing Bridge Creek, the climber's trail follows the North Fork of Bridge Creek northwest. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Bear tracks along the North Fork of Bridge Creek.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Nearing the intersection with Grizzly Creek, one of the creek crossings required on the approach.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • After a few miles, the trail becomes overgrown with stinging nettles, alder, and wildflowers. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • First glimpse of Mount Goode and the Northeast Buttress. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Scouting a path of least resistance. Over 3,000 feet of scrambling and bushwhacking lie ahead.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • The easiest approach goes up the right side of the leftmost waterfall. The climbing is Class 3-4.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Opting for added support on the crossing of the North Fork of Bridge Creek.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Avalanche paths provide a relatively easy approach. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Taking one last look at the approach before the Class 3-4 scramble.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Setting sun and wildfire smoke lighting the Bridge Creek Valley.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Staying right on the leftmost waterfall.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Black Peak across the valley. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • A dramatic shadow cuts across the sky on the ascent.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Diving into the "Alder Tunnel" section of the approach. The tunnel is a somewhat obvious path through thick alder.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Negotiating the alders on the approach.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • After a few hundred feet of pack-grabbing alder, you're left with another few hundred feet through a beautiful alpine meadow.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Take care to stay on rocks and avoid disturbing the alpine vegetation.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Ptarmigan near the bivy.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • View of Black Peak from the high bivy.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Gearing up for the glacier crossing at sunrise.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • The Northeast Buttress follows the right skyline up Mount Goode.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Sunrise on the North Fork Bridge Creek drainage.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Inside the glacier moat guarding the Northeast Buttress.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Depending on the season and year, access across the moat can be tricky.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Long sections of Class 3-4 simul-climbing.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Looking down on the North Fork of Bridge Creek.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Dramatic exposure on solid rock high on the Northeast Buttress.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Last pitch before the bivy ledge. The bivy is located where the arete (left) and gully (right) meet- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Getting well-deserved rest on the bivy ledge. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Sunrise from the Northeast Buttress.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Rehydrating on the descent. - Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • An old burn provides easy navigating and quick descent into Park Creek drainage.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • View of the south side of Mount Goode from Park Creek Trail.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
  • Bridge Creek.- Mount Goode: Northeast Buttress
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Solitude, Views, Great rock
Cons: 
Mice
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Region:
North Cascades, WA
Congestion: 
Low
Pets allowed: 
No
Recommended Equipment:
Ice axe / crampons, Harness / rope / anchors, Helmets
Alpine climbing NCCS rating: 
Grade V
Net Elevation Gain: 
7,400.00 ft (2,255.52 m)
Parking Pass: 
Sometimes
Preferable Season(s):
Summer
Total Distance: 
30.00 mi (48.28 km)
Trailhead Elevation: 
1,600.00 ft (487.68 m)
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Contributor

Mount Goode (pronounced Good-E) is the tallest peak in the North Cascades National Park at 9,199 feet. Due to it's remoteness, it's the only prominent peak in Washington that cannot be viewed from a road, and even with reputation as a classic alpine route in Washington, you'll often find yourself alone for the majority of the climb. 

There are two popular ways to access the Northeast Buttress of Mount Goode. Climbers can use the Bridge Creek Trailhead on the North Cascades Highway, which features a longer approach but less logistics, or access from Stehekin, which has more logistics but a shorter approach and quicker access to burgers and beer post-climb. 

Both starting points feature moderate trail travel with a few creek crossings. Once on the North Fork of Bridge Creek Trail, the trail becomes more rustic and becomes overgrown for the last mile or so before crossing the North Fork of Bridge Creek to begin the scramble up to a bivy between 5,200 and 5,400 feet. 

Thick alder guard the alpine meadows high on Mount Goode, but with some luck you'll find the "Alder Tunnel" that allows relatively pain-free passage into the alpine. Take the looker's right on the left-most waterfall after crossing the North Fork of Bridge creek, Class 3-4. After popping out of the Alder Tunnel, bivy locations can be found starting at 5,200 feet. 

The receding glacier above is small but active. It's not uncommon to hear icefall throughout the day. Late in the season the glacier moat to get on-route can be tricky. 

Once on the the rock, traverse toward the looker's right to the arete. This usually involves one or two pitches of mid-Class 5 climbing. Once on the Northeast Buttress proper, the thousand feet or so of Class 3-4 climbing becomes visible.

As the route steepens, most parties will begin to pitch the remaining route out. Climb the arete, always staying within approximately 25 feet. The rock is solid, the views are dramatic, and the exposure is wild. After a few pitches (with a 70-meter rope), the arete begins to merge with the gully on the right. This is the main bivy ledge, so stop here if you can't make it to the summit by nightfall.  There are a handful of bivy locations above, but none as comfortable as the bivy ledge. 

From the bivy ledge, follow the right arete up three 70-meter pitches to Black Tooth Notch. From here you'll have two more pitches to the summit. 

The descent consists of left-leaning rappels down to Black Tooth Notch, then a traverse pitch running left to get to the rappel slings. Two rappels get you into the chossy southwest coliour. Once out on the apron of the coliour, trend to the looker's right and find cairns to get you onto a climber's path down to Park Creek Trail. 

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