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About meganerd

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  • Occupation
    REI "sales associate" hahaha
  • Location
    uh...somewhere near the cascades
  1. [TR] Forbidden- W Ridge 6/21/2005

    Is it just me or does that snow face to the right of the Quien Sabe Glacier route on Sahale look kinda sweet? Also, did you use boots or rock shoes for the ridge. I've been thinking of soloing Forbidden also. I'm a competent climber overall, but not an expert. I've done quite a bit of solo stuff though. Judging by your ascent and descent times, I'm guessing you're definetely a better climber than me, but how difficult was it? Did you ever feel uncomfortable being by yourself? The rock is never more than solid low fifth class, or the snow more than 45 degrees right?
  2. funny place names

    The Cascades are well known for the colorful names assigned to various features (Despair, Forbidden, Damnation, etc.). What are some of your favorites? They certainly don't have to be in this area. I think my favorite so far is Skookumpuss peak near Manlywham Campground (along the shores of Lk. Chelan).
  3. Ptarmigan Traverse Late Season

    hmm, I think a little more warning is in order. I did the traverse in early August '03 (dry year), and there was a bit of a moat at Cache Col. That will be bigger in September this year although I would doubt that it would be impassable with a little effort. As said, the Middle Cascade, S Cascade, and Dana are fine, it's just the LeConte... When we did it there was a large crevasse basically spanning the entire thing. We managed to find a way through with a little steep snow climbing up a snow prow (still not sure exactly how that formation formed). Seeing as though this glacier crossing is right in the middle of the traverse and that you can't tell if it's really passable or not from the Spider - Formidable Col (I guarantee that it'll look impassable from there in September this year) and it amounts to a bit of a problem. I'm not saying you shouldn't go then, just expect some possibly significant difficulties on the LeConte.
  4. REI tents

    I worked for REI for a little under four years (ending last July) and we got to know the gear pretty well. Basically, with one or two exceptions, the tents they've been producing the last couple years are of excellent utility (lightweight, well thought out features), and very satisfactory quality. Of course everybody knows they're cheap. As long as you'll be using for either backpacking or basic mountaineering, I'd say go for it. The mountaineering tents are fine too, but don't have as many useful features, nor the quality of sierra designs, Mtn. Hdwr. of course Bibler, etc. The tents are great, I just wish I could say the same about REI's sleeping bags...
  5. Pasayten Snow Conditions??

    I just drove over Washington Pass this morning and there was only a couple feet of snow, at most, at the pass. The meadows north of the pass were already starting to melt out... Also last night, I drove a ways up the road to Harts Pass to find a spot to rest my head. The snow looks to be a good ways up on the peaks, but I guarantee there will be a significant amount at Harts Pass. In conclusion, yeah it would probably be only the high elevation stuff that will still have snow and not the approach, although sun shaded, heavily forested valleys can trap snow as well as there was snow in the forest next to the highway as low as Silver Star Creek (I think).
  6. Mt. Lefroy

    You're pretty much describing, to the letter, my first introduction to the Canadian Rockies as an 18 year old... Be sure to hold up your ice axes to the hordes of asian tourists as a solute to get truly heartfelt oohs and ahhs and "we take pictah??!!!" over and over...
  7. Chamonix - cheap places to stay?

    Last year I stayed at a hostel called Ski Station. It was 12 Euro per bed per night (plus a little for a shower token). It's uphill maybe a quarter mile out of the very center of town on the opposite side of the valley from the Mt. Blanc range. It's literally right next door to the Brevant Cable Car. It's definetely a hostel; there will be others in your room, but getting an actual hotel room is far more expensive in Europe than a couple hostel beds. Oh, and if you're trying to save money, stay in Chamonix, avoiding Zermatt at all costs. And if you're trying to climb any ice routes, don't go in August. This hostel was not full in mid-afternoon 8 out of 9 days that I stayed there (in August) but the tourist info place in the center of town can be quite helpful as well when things are filling up. Also, one more thing, rent the "Let's Go" guide to France from your local library before you go. Very very helpful for budget travelers. Now you've got me wishing I could go back...
  8. baker/muir snowfield current conditions?

    I snowshoed up from the lower ski area at Baker to Panorama Dome. Beyond the ski area boundary, the snow was extremely soft; I was postholing and sliding all over the place with 30 inch snowshoes. And it was hot!! Mind you though that this was 5 in the afternoon Do your best to check overnight temperatures. If they've been consistently below freezing (I doubt it somewhat but haven't checked) the you might encounter a very solid crust in the morning. Still I'd recommend bringing some small snowshoes. Good luck!
  9. Too much water can be bad

    I hiked the grand canyon (to the river) in a day in late June once. The ranger's literally told me that I was likely to die... It didn't help that I had long hair and a black Dead Kennedys shirt on at the time. It's really not very difficult unless you're a dumbass. Start early in the morning, hang out at the air conditioned Phantom Ranch all day, marveling at the thermometer reading 125 (no joke...), then start back up the BRIGHT ANGEL trail (it's largely shaded and has lots of water faucets along the way) at around 3 or 3:30. Just enough time to get back up at a leisurely pace before it gets dark. And eat lots of the very salty peanuts that you get on the plane
  10. The Great Waterproof/Breathable Debate!

    If it rains at all significantly, you're going to get wet. I find the fear of water of most outdoor enthusiests hilarious. The challenge is not to keep dry, but to keep warm. My strategy is to always wear as little as possible that will keep me warm, while hiking in the rain. In addition to that, I always keep a full extra set of clothes in my backpack that I can put on when I stop (or else I'll freeze to death). The reason I started doing this was because, on most days, I completely soak myself in sweat even when it's perfectly nice out. When I would stop, I would freeze. That's not to say I don't use raincoats, just very rarely while I'm actually hiking. I usually use a really light low end waterproof breathable jacket from REI (elements fabric I think). I'm certainly not advertizing that, I got it for free. It works fine if I'm just standing around, and on the rare occasion that I do wear it while hiking, it's to keep me warm and out of the wind, knowing that I'll get soaked underneath it.
  11. Sisters Traverse?

    I'll second that "favorite Cascades solo" point. I'm such a damn misanthrope...
  12. larches

    I'm planning a "larch trip" for next weekend and am trying to decide where to go. I've already been to the Enchantments a couple times so I am thinking Lake Mary area, (not sure how many larches) Golden Lakes Loop, or the Eastern Pasayten (Horseshoe Basin to Cathedral and Remmel Lake area). Any recommendations? Anywhere else I should think about? I have three days.
  13. Is the gully somehow still miraculously in? If not, what is the deal with the alternate route up the rock gullies to the left (?) of the main snow gully. Class 3? 4? 5? Loose? Roped or unroped? How does one get to them? Thanks for any help.
  14. Looking for a fellow slogger.

    Sounds like a pretty good description of me. I try to do stuff solo but always fail because of lack of ambition. Whenever I'm with someone, I feel like I'll be letting them down if I don't keep going which is a good thing. I'm always available Wednesday and sometimes Tuesday. What do you want to climb? I've had a route (any route) on Forbidden on my wish list for years, but haven't gotten around to it, also N Face Buckner and N Face Shuksan and any route on Rainier (kinda sad I haven't climbed that fixture of our skyline yet). All that is two day stuff though, at least for lazy sloggers like us. Any ideas?
  15. Hidden Lake Peak info?

    Just got back from there about 4 hours ago I'm not sure what blowdowns Gary was talking about. There are two, but neither one is at all difficult to get over/under (one of them will be annoying to go under with skis but, come on, it's one). Trail is snowfree until the second crossing of Sibley Creek where it changes aspect. From there on is solid snow to near the true summit and to the base of the lookout summit pyramid. As for being a good ski trip, that depends on what you consider a good ski trip. There will certainly be no 3000 foot runs all the way to the valley bottom or anything, but I would imagine you could put together 1000 foot runs, and it is quite easy to come down one run and then go somewhere else for another. Very forgiving terrain for the most part. The snow is melting FAST and there are plenty of bare patches. The snow is in decent shape for skiing, (granted, I don't ski) not icy but consolidated. Overall, I thought it was a great trip for the effort.