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gslater

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About gslater

  • Rank
    enthusiast

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  • Occupation
    Nerd herder
  • Location
    Idaho's Portugal
  1. We went up last weekend (8/22), but up the S. Ridge from Shale Lake, rather than the SW Ridge. Your basic long, tedious, loose slog up to the Red Saddle. Then bare from the saddle about halfway across the normal traverse zone; easy walking on the faint "trail" right below the summit horns. Once getting to the remaining snowfield (very solid in the early morning shade), it's continuous across to the ridge on the other side. We went across just under the bottom edge of the snowfield on frozen scree about halfway, then up the snowfield at about a 45 deg. angle over to gain the far ridge. Pickets required heavy pounding, but were totally bomber for protection. A 70m rope was handy for reaching from the first corner of the snowfield across and up to the where we could wrap it around a boulder just over the top of the ridge. Everything from that far ridge around to the north side and the Class 4 "gulley" to the top was totally bare and easy. Coming back across the traverse was in the sun, and things softened very quickly. Started to get lots of smallish rocks coming down from the edge of the snowfield. Another party was behind us earlier, starting the traverse while we were in the summit area, and then they magically disappeared. Didn't have any clue what happened to them until I was the first back across the traverse. Right about in the middle was a decent-sized rock that was pretty covered in fresh wet blood. The rope we had left there had blood all over it, and there was a trail of blood drops back across the traverse, and all the way down the trail from the Red Saddle. Our suspicions of some kind of rockfall-induced accident were confirmed much later when a member of the affected climbing party found us at camp at Shale Lake and told us about the large rock that fell on his teammate's hand while it was resting on top of his ice axe. Did some serious damage to the hand, and obviously caused a lot of bleeding. The moral of the story: the route is still easily possible, but watch for rocks in the traverse area after the sun hits it. (Kinda obvious, but bears repeating anyway)
  2. FUCK... THIS... SHIT

    I don't know if I've got ANY friends that I'd be comfy taking up Cooper Spur for their first mtn. climb. Yikes! nonsense - perfect route for cherries - goddamit this is what climbing a mountain is! little old ladies did it in woolen knickers w/ alpenstaves in the by-gone-days-of-filth so shut the fuck and get up there! All of those little old ladies of yore were WAY more hardmannish than any of my friends are.
  3. [TR] Mt, Washington - North Ridge 6/27/2009

    Just because a soul wasn't seen by you, it doesn't mean there wasn't one there. I have a real issue with rock trundlers, having been very nearly hit by such a rock in the past, and having had the chance to express my thoughts directly to the person who did the trundling. The asshole insisted over and over that there "wasn't anyone there", although we most certainly were.
  4. FUCK... THIS... SHIT

    I don't know if I've got ANY friends that I'd be comfy taking up Cooper Spur for their first mtn. climb. Yikes!
  5. FUCK... THIS... SHIT

    And even if there WERE a Mazamas group up there, the numbers would be very limited, since the club has a "no more than one team per route per day" rule.
  6. Mt Hood north side access??

    RIP Kurt Vonnegut, April 2007.
  7. Snowshoeing near Portland

    Another option is to go east on 26, then take 35 toward Hood River. Park at the Clark Creek SnoPark just past the Hood River Meadows entrance to Mt. Hood Meadows. The trails leave the SnoPark and head toward the mountain, and are criss-crossed by trails heading toward HRM.
  8. New route on Illumination Rock?

    7200'? As in probably not far from Silcox? Nice.
  9. The schrund may require a little creativity as it gets late into summer, but something can probably be worked out, perhaps on the far left edge. The part of the route that I think has the most risk of some kind of accident is the ascent up the short section of wet slabby stuff. A fall there probably wouldn't be fatal, but there's no great route up through it. On the way down near that area, we rapped from a small tree, about 2" or so (edit: on further review, it looks like the pics above show the same tree rap). Pulling the ropes felt very clean, but we had 2 rocks about 20" in diameter silently dislodge and come right at me and another guy. Closest I've ever come to getting killed. The other thing about Bonanza that surprised me was how very little rockfall or loose stuff we encountered. Beckey mentions how loose the rock is, and I've heard other people mention that, but we never encountered anything too loose on the part above the glacier. And we never saw any evidence of rocks on the glacier below, either. Ours was an early August trip, and the glacier was completely free of evidence of rocks.
  10. best altimeter?

    My recommendation is a Casio Pathfinder. If you get the solar atomic model, you never need to replace a battery (can be a problem with Suuntos) because it's powered by sunlight (and has a huge power reserve). The clock gets synchronized automatically every night to be radio broadcast of the atomic clock signal, so it's always set correctly. The current generation of Pathfinders has a nice electroluminescent backlight, which is nice. My previous 11 year old Casio altimeter watch was (is) great and indestructible, but it had a crappy light which was nearly worthless. The alarms (there are multiple) on the Pathfinder are also much better (i.e. louder) than on the Suuntos I've tried. Has a world time function, so you can quickly/easily set it to any time zone for travel. Great water resistance. Multiple altimeter recordings. Some kind of low-temperature resistance. And so on. Pretty ideal for a climber, but kind of big. Smaller people would probably feel somewhat overwhelmed (at least with the model I got). I got mine (model PAW1200T-7V) at Costco about a year ago for around $150 or so, which is quite a bit less than the usual retail for them. They're available in several different colors, with both plastic and metal versions.
  11. That traverse above the bergschrund certainly can get your brain going. It's not exactly super-steep, but just steep enough to make you think a fall could be kinda hard to arrest, and that such a thing would be, ummmmmm, "bad". My trip up there was 4 years ago, and there wasn't much bridge left across the bergschrund. The first person across put in a few pickets for belaying the others, but then we didn't protect the subsequent traverse at all. The traverse seemed far riskier at the time.
  12. gps info

    I'm not 100% certain, but I think that maybe, just maybe, there was once a thread or two on here somewhere about GPS units in the past...
  13. Climber death on North Side of Hood

    My wife has worked with the victim (he's a doc from Eugene) intermittently over the years. She freaked out a bit this morning when she heard the name, and immediately told me I was banned from ever climbing Hood again. I think that was in jest... She said he was a really good guy.
  14. Favorite 40+ mile hikes in WA/OR

    Personally, I'd just head to the Wallowas and string together a bunch of segments/loops. Plenty of options there.
  15. 2 car questions

    '02 Audi A6 2.7T (twin turbo V6), quattro AWD, 6 sp manual tranny Without Thule rack: 28-29 highway, avg. 22-23 city With rack? Not sure '01 Ford Ranger 4.0 V6, 4WD, 5 sp manual tranny, no canopy In 2WD, 20 MPG highway, avg. 15-16ish city In 4WD, less, but really pretty unknown
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