True North - Mt Baker & Mt Shuksan Alpinism

Why climb one when you can climb two? The True North Alpine Climbing week pairs the best climbing route on Mt Baker with one of Mt Shuksan's classics. First we tackle the North Ridge of Mt Baker, then we pop back to town before heading back into the mountains to take on the North Face of Mt Shuksan.

Price $4,725 1:1 , $2,800 ea 2:1

Deposit secures your spot, final payment will be ACH, Zelle or Credit Card with service fee

Overview
Itinerary
Prerequisites
Inclusions
Gear

We'll tackle the following objectives and skills:

  • Push Your Limits - Why climb one when you can climb two? The True North Alpine Climbing week pairs the best climbing route on Mt Baker with one of Mt Shuksan's classics.

  • The Routes

    The North Ridge of Mt Baker is a one-of-a-kind alpine ice classic. With massive relief, expansive glaciers, pitched ice climbing and incredible exposure this climb is simply exhilarating. In terms of pure fun, this climb ranks at the top of the list.

    The North Face of Mt Shuksan is 4 more days of classic Cascade alpinism. We approach the North Face via the Fisher Chimneys. Once above the Chimneys, we descend the White Salmon Glacier and climb back up to our camp near the base of the North Face. The next day we start early, climb ther exhilarating North Face and the summit pyramid before returning to Whinnies Slide to set camp. Finally, we descend the Fisher Chimneys and return to Artist Point.

  • Confirmed Wilderness Reservations - Overnight trips in the North Cascades National Park require wilderness permits. We have reserved prime dates for this season, which are guaranteed: July 6-12, 2024

    * Non-Reserved Wilderness Dates mean that we do not currently have these dates reserved with wilderness permits. We can usually get reservations for these dates and there are other camping options if we are unable to obtain a wilderness camping permit.

  • Here's the schedule for your trip:

    • Day 0 - Dinner and Gear Check in Glacier, WA - Our guides will double check that you have all the right gear for the trip and help you minimize weight, decide on the perfect layers, and choose how much food and water to bring.

    • Day 1 -Approach to Coleman Glacier Camp. - We’ll get an early start, get to camp and scout the glacier approach to the base of the route before getting to bed early for the alpine start and summit attempt.

    • Day 2 - The Climb and return to camp. - The North Ridge of Mt Baker is a one-of-a-kind alpine ice classic. With massive relief, expansive glaciers, pitched ice climbing and incredible exposure this climb is simply exhilarating. In terms of pure fun, this climb ranks at the top of the list.

    • Day 3 - Break Down Camp & Return to Glacier - We'll break down camp and pop back to town for pizza, beer and some quality sleep before packing up and heading back into the mountains to take on the North Face of Mount Shuksan.

    • Day 4 - Fisher Chimneys - We approach the North Face via the Fisher Chimneys, which offers fun climbing on exposed rock. Once above the Chimneys, we'll set camp for the night and prepare for a descent down the White Salmon Glacier the following day.

    • Day 5 - Descend the White Salmon & Climb to North Face Camp - Today starts with a descent down the White Salmon Glacier. Once at the bottom of the glacier, we'll climb to the base of the North Face where we'll set our camp for the night.

    • Day 6 - North Face Summit - The next day we start early and climb many pitches of steep snow and glacial ice while enjoying views of Price Lake and the Mt Baker Wilderness before topping out on the Upper Curtis Glacier. From the Upper Curtis we have a multitude of options for gaining the summit, all involving 4th to low 5th class rock climbing. Once we're on top we descend via the Sulphide Glacier and take Hell's Highway back to camp just above Winnies Slide. It's a long day and we set up camp, make dinner and head to bed early

    • Day 7 - Descend The Fisher Chimneys - Break camp and descend the Fisher Chimneys. The descent back to the trailhead involves down-climbing exposed 3rd and 4th class terrain before we hit the trail back to Artist Point.

    Here are the skills and fitness you'll need for your course:

    • Intermediate Alpine Climbing Experience - Including basic rope skills, experience with belaying, rappelling and technical climbing on 4th and 5th class rock. Depending on the time of year, crampon and ice axe techniques may be required.

    • Excellent fitness - Able to spend 12-16 continuous hours outside, moving uphill at over 1,000’ per hour for durations of 1-2 hours between breaks. Participants should be able to hike 12-15 miles, climbing 3,000-6,000 vertical feet throughout the course of the day. People with excellent fitness typically have a strenuous workout 4-6 days per week. Be ready for a sufferfest!

    • Mountaineering Gear - Come prepared with your own gear or rent from us
    Shop Recommended Gear OR Visit our Rentals Page

    Here's what's included with your trip:

    • Experienced AMGA Trained Guide
    • Ropes & Gear
    • Tent
    • Stove & Fuel
    • Group Safety Gear - your guide will be equipped with snow science tools and a first aid kit
    • Wag Bags - for human waste disposal in with compliance 'Leave No Trace' principles
    Not Included
    • Meals
    • Ice Axe, Crampons, Climbing Harness
    • Guide Gratuities

    Mountaineering Gear

    • Ice Axe
    • Crampons
    • Climbing Harness
    Overnight Gear
    • Headlamp
    • Sleeping Bag
    • Sleeping Pad
    Clothing & Accessories
  • Technical Outerwear (jacket, bibs/pants)
  • Multiple Midlayer Options
  • Gloves
  • Helmet
  • Beanie
  • Baseball Cap
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Water Bottle / Hydration Pack (2L)
  • Meals - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks

  • Know Before you go

    SKILL LEVELAdvanced
    ELEVATION3,500-11,000'
    LocationMt Baker & Mt Shuksan

    Price/Person $500.00
    Private Programs
    Duration: 7 Days
    View Full Itinerary
    Private Programs

    Blackbird Mountain Guides offers both scheduled group programs and private programs.

    Private programs are simply above and beyond what Blackbird Mountain Guides currently has scheduled. Scheduled courses are not always less expensive. Before booking a trip with Blackbird Mountain Guides, clients are encouraged to review the differences between these types of programs, and to decide what works best for them.

    SCHEDULED PROGRAMS

    Scheduled Programs have fixed dates, itineraries, objectives, curriculum, and costs. They typically appeal to solo individuals or small groups or who are looking to share the cost of their program with a larger group. Correspondingly, scheduled programs are less expensive for smaller groups (1-2), and they provide the opportunity to meet others with similar interests. If you have a large group (3+), Scheduled programs will often be more expensive. They can fill up quickly, and scheduling flexibility is obviously limited.

    Scheduled programs will have advertised dates. All scheduled programs can be run as private programs with private dates/rates as well.

    PRIVATE PROGRAMS

    Private programs have scheduling freedom. They typically appeal to those who would like some flexibility in planning their own trip or course. In this regard, Itineraries and objectives can be tailored to suit current conditions as well as client goals. Private programs are normally less expensive for larger groups (3+). If you have a small group (1-2) private programs will be more expensive.

    Contact us
    Full Itinerary

    Day 0 

    Dinner and Gear Check in Glacier, WA. Our guides will double check that you have all the right gear for the trip and help you minimize weight, decide on the perfect layers, and choose how much food and water to bring.

    Day 1

    Approach to Coleman Glacier Camp.  We’ll get an early start, get to camp and scout the glacier approach to the base of the route before getting to bed early for the alpine start and summit attempt.

    Day 2

    Summit attempt via the North Ridge of Mt Baker and return to camp.

    Day 3

    Break down camp and return to Glacier.

    Day 4

    Hike into Shuksan, climb Fisher Chimneys. Camp above the Fisher Chimneys.

    Day 5

    Descend the White Salmon Glacier and set camp at the base of the North Face.

    Day 6

    Break camp and begin climbing the North Face of Mt Shuksan.  Summit via the most appropriate way to the top and return to camp above Winnies Slide.

    Day 7

    Break camp and descend the Fisher Chimneys.  Hike back to the Lake Ann Trailhead.

    We'll tackle the following objectives and skills:

    • Push Your Limits - Why climb one when you can climb two? The True North Alpine Climbing week pairs the best climbing route on Mt Baker with one of Mt Shuksan's classics.

    • The Routes

      The North Ridge of Mt Baker is a one-of-a-kind alpine ice classic. With massive relief, expansive glaciers, pitched ice climbing and incredible exposure this climb is simply exhilarating. In terms of pure fun, this climb ranks at the top of the list.

      The North Face of Mt Shuksan is 4 more days of classic Cascade alpinism. We approach the North Face via the Fisher Chimneys. Once above the Chimneys, we descend the White Salmon Glacier and climb back up to our camp near the base of the North Face. The next day we start early, climb ther exhilarating North Face and the summit pyramid before returning to Whinnies Slide to set camp. Finally, we descend the Fisher Chimneys and return to Artist Point.

  • Confirmed Wilderness Reservations - Overnight trips in the North Cascades National Park require wilderness permits. We have reserved prime dates for this season, which are guaranteed: July 6-12, 2024

    * Non-Reserved Wilderness Dates mean that we do not currently have these dates reserved with wilderness permits. We can usually get reservations for these dates and there are other camping options if we are unable to obtain a wilderness camping permit.

  • Here's the schedule for your trip:

    • Day 0 - Dinner and Gear Check in Glacier, WA - Our guides will double check that you have all the right gear for the trip and help you minimize weight, decide on the perfect layers, and choose how much food and water to bring.

    • Day 1 -Approach to Coleman Glacier Camp. - We’ll get an early start, get to camp and scout the glacier approach to the base of the route before getting to bed early for the alpine start and summit attempt.

    • Day 2 - The Climb and return to camp. - The North Ridge of Mt Baker is a one-of-a-kind alpine ice classic. With massive relief, expansive glaciers, pitched ice climbing and incredible exposure this climb is simply exhilarating. In terms of pure fun, this climb ranks at the top of the list.

    • Day 3 - Break Down Camp & Return to Glacier - We'll break down camp and pop back to town for pizza, beer and some quality sleep before packing up and heading back into the mountains to take on the North Face of Mount Shuksan.

    • Day 4 - Fisher Chimneys - We approach the North Face via the Fisher Chimneys, which offers fun climbing on exposed rock. Once above the Chimneys, we'll set camp for the night and prepare for a descent down the White Salmon Glacier the following day.

    • Day 5 - Descend the White Salmon & Climb to North Face Camp - Today starts with a descent down the White Salmon Glacier. Once at the bottom of the glacier, we'll climb to the base of the North Face where we'll set our camp for the night.

    • Day 6 - North Face Summit - The next day we start early and climb many pitches of steep snow and glacial ice while enjoying views of Price Lake and the Mt Baker Wilderness before topping out on the Upper Curtis Glacier. From the Upper Curtis we have a multitude of options for gaining the summit, all involving 4th to low 5th class rock climbing. Once we're on top we descend via the Sulphide Glacier and take Hell's Highway back to camp just above Winnies Slide. It's a long day and we set up camp, make dinner and head to bed early

    • Day 7 - Descend The Fisher Chimneys - Break camp and descend the Fisher Chimneys. The descent back to the trailhead involves down-climbing exposed 3rd and 4th class terrain before we hit the trail back to Artist Point.

    Here are the skills and fitness you'll need for your course:

    • Intermediate Alpine Climbing Experience - Including basic rope skills, experience with belaying, rappelling and technical climbing on 4th and 5th class rock. Depending on the time of year, crampon and ice axe techniques may be required.

    • Excellent fitness - Able to spend 12-16 continuous hours outside, moving uphill at over 1,000’ per hour for durations of 1-2 hours between breaks. Participants should be able to hike 12-15 miles, climbing 3,000-6,000 vertical feet throughout the course of the day. People with excellent fitness typically have a strenuous workout 4-6 days per week. Be ready for a sufferfest!

    • Mountaineering Gear - Come prepared with your own gear or rent from us
    Shop Recommended Gear OR Visit our Rentals Page

    Here's what's included with your trip:

    • Experienced AMGA Trained Guide
    • Ropes & Gear
    • Tent
    • Stove & Fuel
    • Group Safety Gear - your guide will be equipped with snow science tools and a first aid kit
    • Wag Bags - for human waste disposal in with compliance 'Leave No Trace' principles
    Not Included
    • Meals
    • Ice Axe, Crampons, Climbing Harness
    • Guide Gratuities

    Mountaineering Gear

    • Ice Axe
    • Crampons
    • Climbing Harness
    Overnight Gear
    • Headlamp
    • Sleeping Bag
    • Sleeping Pad
    Clothing & Accessories
  • Technical Outerwear (jacket, bibs/pants)
  • Multiple Midlayer Options
  • Gloves
  • Helmet
  • Beanie
  • Baseball Cap
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Water Bottle / Hydration Pack (2L)
  • Meals - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks
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    Epic Reviews From Adventurers

    11 reviews
    • Rated 5 out of 5 stars
      Coudn't have imagined a better Rainier Summit!

      Blackbird Guides is the best! I've been using their services for about 3 years and every adventure has been absolutely incredible. Each of the guides are full of knowledge and incredibly good at passing along their years of expertise. I just summited Rainier with Brandon and Andrew and I couldn't have imagined a better experience all around. I refer everyone I know to Blackbird.

      April H.
      Flag of United States
      Verified Buyer
      Mt Rainier Summit & Skills Expedition 5 Day
    • Rated 5 out of 5 stars
      Much better than expected.

      BlackBird guides were professional. I highly recommend them.

      Justin
      Mt Baker Summit Climb 1 Day
    • Rated 5 out of 5 stars
      Hit 3 Cascade summits, truly outstanding guiding!

      We did a five day trip. Hit three summits. Truly outstanding guiding by Zeb and Aaron. Their knowledge of the mountains is impressive. They knew how to modify the trip on the fly based on skill level. Pushed the right amount to get us there but still made it casual and fun. I rock climb but this was my first alpine climbing and I’d recommend Blackbird to any first timers.

      Anthony V.
      Flag of United States
      Forbidden Peak North Ridge
    • Rated 5 out of 5 stars
      Baker North Ridge was amazing!

      Did a 3 day trip with Blackbird on Baker North Ridge. Was an amazing experience. Our guide, Arthur, was knowledge, and willing to teach us. Would be happy to book another trip with them again.

      David S.
      Flag of United States
      Verified Buyer
      Mt Baker North Ridge Summit Climb
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