I lifted a foot to take a step just as a gust of wind passed. The rock below my other foot rocked, and I teetered precariously on my crampons, wishing I was on snow, not some loose piece of Cascade granite. The gust passed and I put my foot down, thankful that I didn’t get blown down the scree slope and onto the steep snow below.
We were on the false summit of Kololo Peaks. It wasn’t far to go to get to the true summit. Just down 50′ of scree to a saddle and back up another 100′ or so. My climbing team had done a grueling 13-mile approach and climbed in near white-out conditions. We weren’t about to be turned so short of our goal. We made it, snapped our “summit picture” and beat a hasty retreat back to camp.
Kololo Peaks (there is only one, don’t ask me why the name is plural) is located about three miles south of Glacier Peak. It shares the same base camp as its big brother, but it seems that no one actually climbs this mountain. We encountered many, many people on the approach trail, none of which had even heard about Kololo. There’s pretty good beta on summitpost.org if you’re interested in giving it a try yourself. Below are a few pictures if you want to be an armchair climber.