FKT: Ashly Winchester - Mt Shasta (CA) - 2019-06-28

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Total time
4h 30m 53s

I was nervous to say the least.
This mountain eats people.
Climbing alone is not a benign thing to do, but I felt confident enough in my abilities to attempt this route solo.
I started from Horse Camp at 6:49 am. It was a cold morning and the snow was solid.
I felt a little heavy and sluggish. This was my third time up the mountain in two weeks and perhaps I hadn't recovered well since the last go round.
I left early enough to avoid the rockfall in the gulch. The sun hit the surrounding rock rim a little before I made it to 50/50 camp. It was cold enough that I knew the ice wouldn't be melting up high for some time. Thank goodness. That was my biggest worry about this effort. The weekend before I had encountered rockfall in the gulch and watching rocks fly past you like missiles is terrifying.
I made it to Lake Helen in about 1 hour 24 minutes. I took a moment here to drink and eat a little.
Nearly 1 hour and 27 minutes after that, I hit the top of Red Banks. I paused again to make sure I took in food and water, and to take in the scenery. It seems rare to have this place all to yourself, and there were very few people on the mountain that day. The breeze was frigid, and my toes and fingers were numb. I steeled myself for the Misery Hill climb that was to come.
To my surprise, Misery Hill was not as difficult as I had remembered it from the previous weekend. From there, it was smooth sailing all the way to the top. 
4 hours 30 minutes and 53 seconds after I left Horse Camp, I tagged the summit. I was elated. I had never felt so good on this mountain, and having the summit completely to myself was one of the most surreal moments I've ever had. The silence up there is intense and complete.
All in all, I am happy with this effort. There's absolutely room for improvement, but with as much as I love this mountain, I know I will be back.