Benign has had my attention for a while. It's a B peak, it's over 7k feet, and it seems straightforward with very rewarding sights on a clear day. I also had the good fortune of reading recent beta regarding snow conditions on Benign - it looked good to go, as long as you got up and down early! With a lot of snow remaining in the CSP, combined with hot June afternoons, the mountains are shedding. Ie, avalanching!
With that I mind, I was riding my bike around Eklutna by 5:30am and ditching it at Serenity Falls by 6:30am. Unlike Monday's misadventure, I had taken the time to have a good look at the route for Benign. That meant I felt confident in climbing fast, and pretty soon, I was on the massive moraine bench that circled around Benign to the SE gully.
|Serenity Falls center left, with scree field and Dead Goat gully just to the right|
|Looking up Dead Goat gully|
|Above Deadgoat, ascending to the moraine.|
|Looking down the SE gully at frozen avy debris|
I spent a few minutes, and headed down.
|Summit pano. Left to right - Eklutna lake, Bold, Bashful, Baleful, the Mitre, Ovis, Eklutna glacier, and Peril|
Quick video. Didn't bring my usual camera gear and I regret it!
|Looking down at the entrance to Deadgoat|
|Dandelions and mountains!|
|One of those afternoons where you just smile.|
1:00:49 Riding in
3:19:41 Ascending Benign
2:34:03 Descending Benign
1:27:31 Riding out (I gave in to the photo ops!)