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Everything posted by marcus

  1. Will folks lose their address books as well?
  2. If you were on Stuart 7/16-17 Please reply

    MtnHigh - I'm glad your friends returned home safely
  3. Autumn in the Alps

    I heard from some Cham guides in Alaska last year that late October-early November can be great for autumn mixed routes...'best time of year' for some stuff they said.
  4. Climb: SEWS south arete, Mount Triumph NE ridge Date of Climb: 6/21/2005 Trip Report: With a few days off and the rolodex of PDX alpine partners looking thin for the week(finals, injuries, weddings...you name it!) I decided to grow myself a new partner instead. Meet James: Good backcountry experience as a seasonal firefighter and the ability to pull V6. Oh, and he's never placed a piece of gear or been more than 30m off the deck in his life. No worries. Time for a little Alpine 101. Sunday we ran up to SEWS's south arete and, after a quick primer on the basics of simul-climbing, ascended the route in 45 min and downclimbed, taking time at the chimney to show James how to rappel. Monday we jogged into Triumph in just under five hours and took the afternoon to introduce James to crampons, ice axe and basic glacier travel. Tuesday morning we set out under broken skies onto Triumph's NE ridge, simul-climbing to the summit block's base(ca. 6680ft?). Here we watched dark clouds moving in fast and turned tail. We downclimbed and rapped the ridge back to the base. By the time we'd returned to our camp, full-value rain and lightning had descended on us. Ditching our rack in a moat, we hid under a tarp for three hours, counting lightning strikes(!) and watching clouds rip through the col around us. At 7pm it let up just long enough to sucker us out of our hole. Ten minutes down the trail more electric weather motived us to shift gears and hightail back to the car in 2:47. Typically I prefer to post TRs just on condition-dependent routes - but James had such a great showing on his first time in the mountains, I thought it was worth mentioning. What did you do on your first alpine climb? Oh, and James said Triumph was harder than any V6 he's done...does that make it V7? Gear Notes: 60m 9.4mm rope 9 cams to 2.5" 1 set of stoppers 8 slings 4 draws Approach Notes: Thornton Lakes trail is snow-free. Lots of water available at the col.
  5. Thanks for the thorough TR, Mike. It was an awesome day out with great mixed and snice climbing on good-enough andesite rock in full conditions. Rime Dog (III 5.9,200m) P1: Climb right-facing mixed corner(5.7) for 80 feet, move around left to right-leaning ramp above. Belay at top of ramp at the base of wide gulley. 50m P2: Ascend gulley on right side, negotiating occasional ice steps to base of headwall. 45m P3: Climb steep & wild right facing corner for 50 feet(5.9) and traverse right above to exposed slab/ramp. Belay above at base of corner. 50m P4: Ascend tricky corner(20 ft, 5.7) and climb open snow & rime steps to West Gable. We rapped into the south chamber without incident - although inspect any rap anchors you might find. Ours were a little funky.
  6. Has anyone been up to the lake since the warmer temps? Conditions??
  7. Banks Ice

    Did anyone venture out to Banks this weekend to view the heat wave's carnage? Wondering what(if anything!) might be still standing...
  8. Ice conditions at Alpental?

    Alpental Falls received several inches of new early Sunday, but the grovelling and point releases we made climbing it in sheer boredom that day left a nice trough...enjoy.
  9. Rabbit Runners, Wiregates, and WC Hexes

    1) Overhand knots have a comparable strength to water knots(about 50%) - but a full-length runner allows many more creative options with minimal weight addition: rap slings, hitching or slinging natural pro(e.g. bushes, knobs). Spend the xtra buck and save the rabbit runner for yer anchor. 2) Wiregates are structurally as strong as solid gates - don't kid yourself, any biner's strength is significantly less in a direct load on the gate itself - and they are much less likely to open as a result of 'rebounding' from a shock load on the biner. They're lighter and function better when frozen than solid gates as well. 3) Leave the slings on your hexes fully extended. Doing otherwise could have the unintended consequence of pulling your piece in an unintended direction and compromising the placement before loading the piece.
  10. Climb: Water Ice on Cooper Spur Buttress-Training Day(Kenny's Climb) WI4 Date of Climb: 11/15/2004 Trip Report: On Nov 15 in full conditions Chris Mackay and I ascended the unclimbed flow 50m left of Hal Burton's line, ca.8,300' on the rockband below Cooper Spur. A photo of the line can be seen on Hal's TR from 11/4: Cooper Spur Ice. The climbing was full-value WI4 and highly recommended. P1: Tiptoe across a snow fin bridging the moat, up a broad cone to vertical ice. Here one could fire in a quick belay(recommended, as we ran outta rope on a 65m trying to 'single-pitch' it) or continue up great stemming and delicate swings to a thinnish topout. No rock gear here, so bring those 13cms. P2: AI2 gulley past short steps until you find a rock belay in the rock above(About 50m for us). We ascended a couple hundred feet to the Cooper Spur crest and descended the ridge from there. With lotsa spindrift, null visibility and high winds(gusting 40mph) we had a stellar adventure, calling the route 'Training Day,' WI4 80m and climbed it in honor of Kenny from AK, who lost his life in an unfortunate accident on the Sandy Headwall last week. Gear Notes: Screws and pins(few KB-angles). Approach Notes: As of 11/15 the road to Cloudcap is very open with minimal snowpack. No floatation was required on the approach(1.5hrs).
  11. Has anyone else been up the spur to climb or recon these routes...?
  12. Hyalite Ice (or lack off)

    I spent Nov 20-22 in Hyalite climbing a variety of well-formed routes: Champagne Sherbert & Slot were both in good shape, as did High Crimes appear to be. Bobo Like was very climbable and Killer Pillar has already touched down. Twin Falls was certainly extra-large...
  13. Who has been to Cloud Cap recently?

    on monday i drove all the way to the trailhead without 4wd - most of the road was bare and easily passable cooper spur was primarily neve/late season snowpack with sporadic shallow powder drifts however, it was snowing like a banshee above 7,000ft - albeit horizontally sorry, no photos
  14. By all means, I hope this flow has been climbed previously. If someone has information about the ascent history in this area, I'd love to learn more about it. The name I attatched to it, "Training Day" reflects the very fact that in generations past such a minor flow on a larger peak would not even be considered a 'real' climb, but rather just a day out, working on your chops. By posting it with a name rather than 'Random Flow on Left #2' my intent was to develop a reference point for further climbing and reports. There has been dependable water ice up on the Spur for weeks - posting current, usable info is a way to encourage others to check it out. As for naming a route in memorium: I'm unaware of any precedent regarding necessary proximities...I believe 'Johann's Route' was in South America, yet the man died on a route in Asia. Kenny had been in Portland a few short weeks and during that time I talked with him just a few times. He struck me as an open and friendly guy who was a pleasure to be around. I saw the impact his loss left on his friends and sought a small gesture for them...
  15. [TR] Hood- Cooper Spur Ice 11/4/2004

    Climbed this flow with Paul Robinson on 11/7 in warm temps(upper 40's), though the sheltered northern aspect and ca. 8300' elevation still provided excellent conditions. Found a 13cm screw useful...would suggest 1-2 on rack. Also a couple pins for a rock belay about 50' above the topout. We required no floatation on the approach...approximately 2 hours from the Cloudcap trailhead. The upper road is still open and passable with 4wd - bring a shovel. So what are you waiting for...go get 'em!
  16. TR: Yocum Ridge 3/1/03

    After securing great work as a guide in southern Utah following on the tail of an awesome five-month road trip, I found myself in an interesting predicament. I had only four days to: return home to Portland, pack all my things, and say farewell for now to friends and family...or go climbing. High pressure and cold temps were enough to merit giving Yocum Ridge a toss, so I called up my pal Christian. After our great experiences on the Grand Teton's N face last July and then Salathe in September, I knew he'd be up for anything. True to form, the predicted starry night we'd scheduled our 1am departure around was instead a socked in drizzly mess. Back to bed, another day perhaps. Next morning, it's all bluebird skies and I get the call from Christian: "Have you looked out your window?" Me: "I know, it's beautiful - but kinda late, huh?" Christian: "Bring yer headlamp. I'm comin' over..." We get to Timberline in time for an early lunch and a half-day skiing, but Christian still insists on doing Yocum. So instead we start the mindless trudge up Palmer to Illumination Saddle. There we get the first glance at Yocum Ridge, all rime-caked and wintry proud. I got the first block and started us up a couloir below the first gendarme, then up the ridge's south side several hundred feet, until making the ridgeline after turning the second gendarme. Up to this point we encountered mostly 1" suncrust over sugar with patches of good neve and some styrofoam rime. Taking the rime-ridge up to the third gendarme, I was bummed(excited?) to find out that reaching the rap slings and only available anchor would involve downclimbing vertical choss and knife-edge snow across to a small saddle. Then our lil' rope rapped us into a still kinda steep(65 degree) solo traverse off the rope back up onto the ridge. Maybe bring a 60m to avoid that. The north side(ala 'Climb High' guidebook beta) option off the gendarme seemed to lead us astray, so we just stayed on the ridgeline itself here. Reaching the col above the 'escape couloir', I gladly turned the lead over to Christian just as the sun dropped below the horizon. Dunno where the actual route goes, but we took the first major gulley east of the 'escape couloir' until it dead-ended in a blank wall to the left and vertical/95-degree rime to the right. Christian pushed up through some pretty technical ground and brought me up to scout out our options. We were on a rime-fin to nowhere and had to traverse at least two more humps before we could get to something more probable. After some zig-zag negotiation, we finally found a couloir that topped us out on the Queen's Chair. A little snack and some glove warmers were a very welcome reward. Having done the scraggly topout slog off the Queen's Chair too often on other westside routes, we opted instead for scurrying down Leuthold Couloir and straight to a warm booth at Denny's in Gresham! Aaaah...harsh lighting and bad food never seemed so good. Rack: 3 pickets 2 ice screws 2 stoppers 6 slings 50m 9mm rope We simul-climbed the whole route with hip belays where necessary. The pro wasn't much - but not as bad as they say. So get on it...it's a blast!
  17. In Portland

    PRG is definitely the better place (versus Stoneworks) to check out. It's about 2/3rds bouldering, with lotsa tricky + creative problems. There's about 4-5 lead lines (mostly steep) and maybe 10-12 TRs up at any one time. It's pretty lo-fi and a little bit dusty, but the folks there are real. It's also about a 5 min. bike ride from downtown. Stoneworks on the other hand...why, that's in Beaverton! Don't make to the 'burbs much...
  18. 5 Best Highlights of the Past Year

    Okay, in chronological order: - March...Colchuck Peak via Wickwire Couloir - May...Pacific Ocean Wall on El Cap - July...Grand Teton, N Face Direct (w/o rock shoes, old skool!) - August...simul-climbing Stuart's N Ridge in sneakers - September...linking both pitches on Salathe headwall(El Cap) in 1:45(no record, but fast for me) Disappointment? Crashing my van into a donkey after failing to complete a one-day bid on Rainbow Wall's Original Route! -Marcus