Cardinal Mountain, Goodale Mountain, Striped Mountain
By: Bill Oliver, Larry Tidball
Bob Wyka and Scott Sullivan set off with Larry and me at 6:10 am, all of us hoping to avoid the mid-day heat expected on the Taboose Pass Trail. Camp was established 3-1/2 hours later at about 10,380 ft, a gain a little in excess of 5,000 ft. Located close to Taboose Creek, our splendid campsite was amid a small, vestigial stand of shady conifers on the south side of a relatively flat area. It was also the terminus of a prominent gully leading SSW toward Striped, though the peak was not directly in view.
After lounging for an hour we headed off at noon, crested Taboose Pass and headed up the loose talus slopes south of Cardinal. I was not expecting this mountain to be such a crud-heap. As the altitude/gain began to weigh wearily on us, Larry and I barely avoided blows as we periodically argued over whose turn it was to sweep. Bob was increasingly put off by our lackluster pace. His leash cut, Mr. Helium Balloon lofted to the high point at 2:25 - nearly a half hour ahead of my sweeping arrival. Our gain for the day exceeded 8,000 ft. Rain and thunder were evident to the west, but our weather remained benign. Camp was eagerly reclaimed at 4:30.
Sunday we were up at 4:40 and enroute by 5:30, heading over the Pass a second time. Bob took my place as co-leader when the three of them struck out for the NE slope of Striped. I was not interested in another class 2 crud-heap. They topped Striped by 8:30 and made Goodale in another 1-1/4 hours. Taking a more 3rd-ish route, I peaked on the latter first, about 9:20, and reveled on its multi-monolith summit. My arrival at camp, via Taboose Pass, was only minutes ahead of my peak-bagging companions at 11:40. They had descended much more directly via the previously-noted gully, topped by lake 11,460. We broke camp at 12:25 and reached the cars at 3:15 - somewhat tired but much gratified.
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