We woke up in the hut after a protected night from the wind and horizontally blowing snow. Some people, who shall go nameless, peed in special water bottles that are dedicated to pee so they don't have to leave their sleeping bags. I am not that smart, but I will be next time! YES, there will be a next time!
JJ woke us up around 6:30, we packed up our stuff and headed over to the kitchen tent for breakfast.
In the kitchen tent, they made us blueberry pancakes, sausages and hot drinks. This was certainly a first class climb! They also told us to poop as much as possible so we wouldn't have to blue bag it. After breakfast, and the obligatory bowel evacuation, we went to snow school to practice cramponing, ice axe, rope team and footwork routines. We ate our pre-summit meal of Pasta with Pesto, roped up, and proceeded to cross the Cowlitz Glacier en route to our high camp at Ingraham Flats at 11,100 feet. the climb across the glacier was easy although there was a threat of rockfall. After the Cowlitz, we reached Cathedral Gap, an area that was all loose stones and scree. Not fun! Very difficult to get a foot hold and we slid a lot. Little did we realize that it was a precursor of Disappointment Cleaver. We reached high camp which was incredible. Great views of the summit, Little Tahoma (3rd highest peak in Washington) and Disappointment Cleaver. We met for hot drinks in the "kitchen" and got our summit briefing after we picked our tents. Mark and I tented together. Being honest, i was nervous and went through a period where I questioned why I was doing this and if this would be my last climb. Really, the only part that got me nervous was the prospect of climbing the Cleaver in the dark at 1:30 in the morning. The team was strong with no weak links, so we went to our tents to "go horizontal" and rest at 4 expecting to be woken up at 12:30 am or so. Of course, 30 minutes into my sleeping bag and I had to pee. I held it in for almost 8 hours!