W6/NS-170, Black Buttes

Activation Date: 22 July 2017
Transport: Hike/Scramble Distance: 9.5 miles
Elev. gain: 1160ft Time: 4-5 hours
Rig(s): FT-817, VX-2R Band(s): 40m, 20m SSB; 2m FM
Antenna(s): End-fed half-wave, 12.5 inch flex whip
Cell Service: Solid (T-Mobile)
Parking: Grouse Ridge Campground Area
Trailhead: Grouse Ridge Trail
Fees/Permits: None
Route: Grouse Ridge, Glacier Lake trails, cross-country
Dogs: Yes  Toilet: Maybe

Several years before I became a ham, when I first camped at Glacier Lake, this group of peaks called to me. I didn’t get around to climbing any of them that first time, but came back a couple of years later to camp at Glacier Lake, and decided to go for it. We chose the highest peak, since it had the most obvious approach, and it’s a short hike if you happen to already be camping at the lake. It’s a steep hike, followed by a scramble to the summit.

Once I started getting into Summits on the Air, it wasn’t long before I checked to see if this summit qualified. What a great excuse to go backpacking to Glacier Lake again!  Black Buttes became a must-do part of the itinerary for my backpacking trip with a group of friends, though I would end up being the only person in our group to do it.

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