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Showing most liked content since 05/29/20 in Posts

  1. 1 point
    Perhaps a better solution would be to have single sticky forum thread for the south side TR. In a similar fashion as there is a single sticky thread for Mt. Hood.
  2. 1 point
    After long deliberation, we have come up with a solution: DON'T CLICK ON THOSE TRs. We want more TRs on this site, not less. Enthusiastic noobs are welcome and I think we shouldn't make them feel unimportant or small. Colin, Marc-Andre, Blake, and many others started out as enthusiastic noobs here. It was awesome to watch them develop into amazing and inspiring climbers. Thanks for the soft ball. You can come out from under your desk now.
  3. 1 point
    Trip: Mt. Hood - South Side Pearly Gates Trip Date: 05/24/2020 Trip Report: Nothing short of perfect climbing conditions on Mt. Hood Sunday morning. Our party of three started right about midnight. The sky was clear and the stars were out but the waxing crescent moon provided no additional light for us. Snow conditions were firm and cold. Two of us were on AT skis with skins and one in our party carried a snowboard and used snowshoes. Skinning conditions continued to be excellent above Palmer, however as the route got steeper and icier we opted to drop our skis and boards about 1,000 feet above the top of Palmer. In retrospect we should have just traversed a bit and taken them all the way up to devil's kitchen. We got in line at the hogsback and took our time as we were behind a couple other parties. Most people were ascending the pearly gates and then coming down the old chute. This made for a nice circle and less of the usual traffic jam. No sign of the bergschrund which still seemed to be covered in snow. As we made our way up to the gates the line of climbers seemed to all be headed to the right gate. Normally I've climbed the left gate and after discussing with my partners and the other teams, it seems that the only reason people were going for the right gate was because that's where others were going. So we took the left gate and had it all to ourselves. I kicked steps for about 100ft in perfectly firm snow pack and then once we got into the hour glass there were footsteps the rest of the way to the summit. I don't think I've ever had that section all to myself before and it was incredibly enjoyable. We took our time and it was about 7:30 by the time we reached the top. It was a first time on top of Hood for one of our party. Conditions were a bit cloudy up top with greater visibility up to the North than the South but little to no wind. I would estimate 50+ people made the summit on Sunday morning with 100+ more hiking or skinning as far as devil's kitchen. We made our way back down through the left gate as still no one else was on that route. The rest of the descent was uneventful and the snow had softened to make things easier for us. Skiing was decent all the way down to the top of magic mile, then it was just warm Cascade concrete with no groomed run to follow down the mile. Gear Notes: Prior to the route changing years ago I would have never considered needing a second tool for the pearly gates, but these days almost everyone had one and it certainly makes things feel way more secure using two tools in a low-dagger position. Also want to give a shout out to my new Atomic Backland Carbon ski touring boots (the 2018-2019 version before the BOA lacing system) and their removable tongues. Flexible and light for the way up and stiff enough for the descent. Approach Notes: As noted in the previous post no need to get a reservation or anything with Timberline. Just drive right up to the overnight lot and register in the climber's cave as usual.
  4. 1 point
    I hate to pile on but I hope you were placing protection/pickets. If not please educate yourself about the dangers of unroped team climbing on those routes. If not for yourself then for the others you put in harms way.
  5. 1 point
    Trip: Cerro Aconcagua - Ruta Normal Trip Date: 02/02/2020 Trip Report: Back when the world was more normal, I took a solo two week trip to Argentina to climb Aconcagua: Day 1 (Thursday January 23rd): Fly out of Seatac – Santiago - Mendoza Day 2: Land in Mendoza, get permit & supplies, drive to Penitentes (el ~8500) for the night at Hotel Ayelan Day 3: Start of climb. Hike to Confluencia (el ~11,100) Day 4: Side trip to Plaza Francia at the base of the South Face for acclimatization, second night at Confluencia Day 5: Move to Plaza de Mulas (el 14,100) Day 6: Scramble nearby Cerro Bonete (el 16,417), second night at Mulas Day 7: Carry water & gear to Camp Canada (el 16,600), third night at Mulas Day 8: Carry gear to Nido de Condores (el 18,200), fourth night at Mulas Day 9: Move to Nido, skipping over Camp Canada Day 10: Acclimatization hike to Camp Colera (el 19,700), second night at Nido Day 11 (Sunday February 2nd): Summit (el 22,841), return to Nido for the night Day 12: Descend to Mulas Day 13: Hike out, return to Mendoza, rearrange flight home Day 14: Fly out of Mendoza - Santiago – LAX - Seattle Day 15 (Thursday February 6th): Land back in Seattle It’s hard to capture two weeks in limited pictures, but here goes. The park entrance off the main highway between Mendoza and Santiago, Chile has a great view of the mountain with the summit visible as the bump on the right. With limited vacation time, I increased my time efficiency (and fuel inefficiency) by renting a car at the airport in Mendoza and driving myself around. This meant I didn’t have to faff around with bus schedules and figuring out transport to/from the trailhead, and also allowed me to get my permit in Mendoza, get some last minutes supplies of fuel, lighters, meat & cheese, and drive up to Penitentes all in the first day so I could spend my first night at elevation. As an added bonus, I drove up to the Christo de Redeemer statue on a winding mountain road to a pass at El 12,572 where I spent 30 minutes walking around at altitude. The start of the hike to Confluencia was beautiful on wide trails through grassland with the mountain dominating the view in front. Confluencia, home for my first two nights on the mountain. My North Face Assault-2 tent is barely visible near the big yellow and white domes on the lower right. The first night at Confluencia when my appetite was high, I splurged a bit and bought a nice dinner from my mule service provider. From then on out it was lots of ramen, rice, and freeze dried. To help my acclimitization, I took a side trip up to Plaza Francia and the massive South Face of Aconcagua on my second day of the climb: Heading up to Plaza de Mulas on the third day. Helicopters were a common sight shuttling gear & supplies & the occasional climber up the valley. Even more common were the mules who do the bulk of the heavy lifting. I used Grajales Expedicions mule service to carry ~50lbs worth of gear from the trailhead straight to Mulas. I was relatively cheap and well worth it. Along with shuttling your gear, it comes with filtered drinking water and toilets and trash service at Confluencia and at Mulas. Plaza de Mulas is a bustling place with tons of climbers from all over the world. There are rangers and doctors at Plaza de Mulas checking on climbers from both independent and guided climbs. I brought a pulse oximeter to periodically check my SpO2 which hovered in the 70's for much of the trip. The rangers also posted a weather report every couple days. Mulas has cell reception (Verizon) so I was also able to check mountainforecast and other websites, but invariably the ranger forecasts were more accurate. My ideal itinerary had me planned to summit on the 4th or 5th, but forecasted high winds had me push the envelope a bit and go for the summit a couple days earlier. Summit day! I got up at 2AM and was hiking by 3AM. I hiked relatively fast early on, but as I got higher my pace slower considerably. First light right below Independencia: Traversing the Gran Acarreo. By this time my pace had slowed to about 5 second rest steps. Resting at La Cueva below the Canaleta. The summit looked SO close from here, but was still over an hour away. On the summit ridge: On top about 1pm in the afternoon. I spent all of two minutes on top. I had severely rushed my acclimatization schedule because of the weather forecast, and my hypoxic addled brain was well aware that I needed to get down quickly. Looking back a couple months later and summit day is definitely a fuzzy memory. A day later back at Plaza de Mulas I splurged on the best pizza I've ever had. Mules once again carried the bulk of my gear down from PdM to the park entrance, and I had a pleasant hike out enjoying the thick air and satisfaction of a climb well done. And finally beer in Mendoza! Gear Notes: Carried an ice axe and crampons but never used either since it was an incredibly dry year. For footwear I wore trail runners all the way to Nido. For the upper mountain I used La Sportiva Baturas with Mountain Tools Supergaiters. Approach Notes: Grajales Expedicions is top notch for mule service A rental car can save a few days on the trip total if you don't have three weeks of vacation. Easy free longterm parking at the trailhead.
  6. 1 point
    @PorterM Yeah had pick weights on them and it was no problemo with the hard glacial ice. The set of them is close in weight to one of my nomics. I personally loved using the two Gullys. They will definitely be my choice from now on for the ambiguous AI2-3 with little to no mixed climbing.
  7. 1 point
    Trip: South Sister - Silver Couloir Trip Date: 05/25/2020 Trip Report: Images: https://imgur.com/a/5vQUocK 9 PM start 11 PM pass North / Middle sister climbers trail on Camp Lake trail 12:45 AM Camp Lake 5 AM base of the climb 7 AM heading down from North Face Couloir 8 AM top of Silver Couloir 8:45 AM Summit Thanks ScaredSilly, Drocka, et al. for your trip reports on South Sister. Maybe you could name the route you took The Fin for the rock near the bottom of the route. https://cascadeclimbers.com/forum/topic/101689-tr-south-sister-north-face-05222018/ https://cascadeclimbers.com/forum/topic/101726-tr-south-sister-north-face-of-northwest-ridge-nfnwr-06262011 My intention was to climb the North Face Couloir. https://imgur.com/a/aPEHYwd showed good snow coverage over the rock bands. I’d watched the radar in the middle of the week for South Sister when it was forecast to get 7.5 inches of snow and it seemed like it rarely got any. My brother’s old skiing and climbing friend skied Mt Bachelor on Friday and said there was 1 – 1.5 feet of new snow on top of a solid base. One day of sun, Friday, was surely not going to consolidate that. Brother skied Mt Hood on Saturday and said there was decent climbing conditions. Hmm, well, it was forecast to warm up on South Sister in the next week so I figured I may has well try now as it probably wasn’t going to get any better the rest of the season. Drove down Saturday afternoon and was on the trail by 9 PM. Started out in a sun hoody, warm gloves and an ear band, added a hat an hour in, fleece top three hours in and then finally a thin wind jacket after getting out of the trees. It was cool with little wind. The approach from Pole Creek was the normal dusty trail for the first few hours with lots of logs and a few downed trees giving way to snow and non-dead trees later. The lower snow was compact and easy to walk on, the new snow, higher up was, as expected, not consolidated. Most of the way over this was fine, nice to have some cushioning when walking in mountaineering boots. As I climbed out of Camp Lake the unconsolidated snow got deeper, maybe six inches and I put on crampon. It was still very dark, new moon that morning, when I checked Gaia to find I’d slightly overshot the turn to start climbing up to the route but was able to go up a bit and traverse left to get there. Heading up the canyon, the snow just got deeper and was still not consolidated. I stabbed the axe down to the hilt with my right hand, pushed the blade of the tool as deeply as I could with the left, kicked in hard and pretended things were going to be fine even though nothing was solid but the snow was holding my weight. Getting up the first rock band was no problem and to the bottom of the second, not much more than traversing right and left to take the best route. The start of the second band required getting over a couple of, not too large, rocks. To my surprise I was able to get a solid tool placement above the rocks and hoisted myself up while pushing off another rock. The upper part of the second band was a different story. The rocks were bigger, steeper and partially covered in ice. I swung the tool hard twice into the exact same spot on a rock covered in ice and got nothing more than an inch-wide divot, no penetration at all. I tried a couple of other spots and reaching around the rock to see if I could hook something but it was too large. Looking up at the final rock band, I resigned that even if I could get above the immediate rocks, there is no way I’d be able to climb to the top this way. My original hope was that the snow just to the right of the final rock band face wouldn’t be too steep and I’d find a way up. Not a chance, there was hardly any snow on the rocks, just a wall of rock and boulders covered in ice. After down climbing a bit, I traversed left, staying close to the rock cliff, and went up the Silver Couloir. This was as advertised, a straightforward steep snow climb. The last 10 feet were very steep and kicking in was more like kicking in my entire lower leg. The lower angle slope to the summit ring had a bunch of unconsolidated snow too but there were areas that were actually firm. After talking to the only group on the summit, I headed southward along the rim and started heading down. The snow was now sticking to my boots and gaiters making massive clown shoes. Not too long later I see a guy on the summit ridge in a Grivel helmet. He says he just climbed the Silver Couloir too. He thanked me for making steps and asks to exchange info so we could do the N Face Couloir next year. Any other time I would be like, heck yeah, that sounds great but I’m completely defeated and want nothing to do with that thing and think no one should climb it without a top rope or years of ice climbing experience. Shoot, I was way too literal in my thinking and missed the chance of finding a great climbing partner. He even offered to makes steps down the North Ridge which he did and I followed but he was long gone by the time I got over there. The walk back to Pole Creek TR was like experiencing a dream where all my movements were slow and painful. I just tried to keep moving and think I’ll get back eventually. The thought of chocolate covered almonds made the idea of driving 3+ hours home bearable. I’ll remember this one for a while. Maybe do a route on the Prouty side next? Gear Notes: Helmet, crampons, axe, 2 tools (only used one) Approach Notes: The normal dusty trail for the first few hours with lots of logs and a few downed trees giving way to snow and non-dead trees later
  8. 1 point
    Unfortunately that anchor is still in the same condition. So hard to spend prime climbing days pulling and replacing hardware when you could be making something new or climbing more pitches. Off, I'd be glad to take you up for a tour some time!
  9. 0 points
    So this probably makes me sound like an elitist prick, but can we just ban S Side of Hood TRs? I mean, seriously, I think there are enough now. If someone sees conditions that are irregular or parties dumb enough to still be long-lining they could just post a picture on the Climbers board or Ice Conditions thread? I get that people are proud of their first alpine climb, or whatever (and this is where I'm an elitist !#*%) but I think that maybe we could stop over-sharing and just text our close friends and family a summit-selfie. I bet they'd be proud... *cringing in the fetal position under my work desk, awaiting the backlash*