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[pct-l] Goat Rocks in Sept--Is Ice Ax Necessary?

I'm just back from vacation. Hiked section G and parts of H and F (in
that order). Started on July 6th at Barlow pass going north. The Mount
Hood area had a lot of snow for the time of the year. Went thru there in
98 two weeks earlier, and it was definitely more snow this time. Brought
an ice axe and was glad I had it on at least one occasion (only maybe
two hundred feet total). What does that tell you about Goat Rocks in
Probably not too much. There was a lot of snow this year, and even with
very warm weather you can't be sure at that elevation. You could even
get new snow. I went thru Goat Rocks in early October, without an ice
axe. Not too fun with the trail completely covered with new snow along
the ridge, still wouldn't call it dangerous as long as I was careful.
The Glacier part was no problem.
This year I met a thruhiker (northbound) at Ollalie Lake around July
20th. That's pretty early. I asked him about the Sierras. He said he had
gone thru in May, without an ice axe. Even with a good snow year in the
Sierras that sound pretty extreme.
So you just have to ask yourself what you're comfortable with. If you're
a mountaineer then Goat Rocks won't be much to talk about. If you're not
used to snow then bring your ice axe.