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Everything posted by Alex_Mineev

  1. [TR] Lane Peak- Zipper (attempt) 11/25/2005

    Skis, snowshoes would work
  2. [TR] Colchuck peak- colchuck glacier route 11/20/2005

    Have you seen any snow in the North Buttress Couloir on Colchuck?
  3. [TR] Wonderland Trail- One Push 9/9/2005

    Yeah, Barry, do it! And then we'll climb some rock as you promised
  4. [TR] Rainier- Kautz 8/24/2005

    Post pictures On what side of the crater rim did you find those vents? I bet columbia crest knob is melted out. Did you see any bivy sites there? On what altitute did you see the rappel gear on Turtle? Also, that fork on upper DC on the way down where one of the options lead to the crevasse, which option was it - left or right?
  5. Kautz Glacier for August 18th?

    this pic was made on Sunday: http://www.cascadeclimbers.com/plab/showphoto.php?photo=12503&size=big&sort=1&cat=500
  6. Missing party on LR

    This article is from 2004. So I believe no dead people this time.
  7. bivy sacks?

    Any opinions/experience with Black Diamond Lightsabre Bivy?
  8. Ptarmigan and Curtis Ridge pics from today

    Thanks! How was the snow/ice wall on the north face of Observation? I think going there tomorrow. So far everything sounds very promising
  9. Ptarmigan and Curtis Ridge pics from today

    Did you guys hike thru Knapsack pass? How much snow is left? How much time did it take you to top Observation Rock? nice pics
  10. Pyramid Peak

    North face of Pyramid may have a short steep couloir, but it is too much of hiking for a training trip. Something in Tatoosh range may have what you want. Look thru TRs like Lane peak etc
  11. [TR] Stuart- Ice Cliff Glacier 5/7/2005

    how bad is the cornice on the left at the exit?
  12. http://www.trackertrail.com/survival/fire/cokeandchocolatebar/
  13. TC 'looked' in shape, but given high freezing levels recently I have some doubts in the quality of snow.
  14. Climb: Mt Rainier-Fuhrer Finger Date of Climb: 2/27/2005 Trip Report: Close call on Fuhrer Finger. Long story in brief: AaronG and I attempted Fuhrer Finger and got hit by an ice fall at 5.30am while climbing the finger at 10870ft. The plan was to summit thru the one of the simplest routes, Fuhrer Finger. I also wanted to recon upper Nisqually before attempting Nisqually Ice Fall later this month. We already had one try on FF at the end of December, but bailed because of bad weather from 9600 camp. The hike to high camp was fun: no wind, not that hot, sun, familiar settings of slopes around Nisqually glacier. On the way we met three teams, one aiming at Kautz Glacier, another also going for FF. At this point we started thinking about Fuhrer Thumb to avoid the other guys but decided to wait till morning. Pitched tent at 4pm and spent 2 hours leisurely soaking sun and views, melting water brewing soup and tea. Alarm went off at 2am, at 3.30 we were following tracks of the other team. In some places tracks were pretty deep in windblown pockets. So we decided to follow the other team on FF to save some time and energy reusing the tracks. When we got closer to the finger windblown snow changed to icy crust mixed with patches of styrofoam. Slope angle increased to 40-45 degrees. Moon was so bright we did not use headlamps. Snow crystals were sparkling in the bluish light like diamonds. Polar star was shining just above the finger exit. Aaron saw long-lasting falling star. Climbing was so joyful! To some reason snow on the left side of the finger was softer than on the right side. Guide book also recommended left side saying that it is safer. So we climbed traversing left and right, taking couple short rests on the left side. I do not remember why but the third rest we did on the right side at the point where finger widens, almost at its exit. A minute to drink water, time check, altitude check, conditions check and I started traversing to the left. Then few things happened very quickly. Aaron yelled “Ice!” I looked up and saw few big chunks flying towards us. I think we were right in their path, because later when we discussed this moment Aaron thought that a lot of ice flew on his right and I saw and heard chunks rumbling on my left. So it took a fraction of a second to understand that we could not run away. I fell down in self arrest position, but because slope surface was very hard it took couple bangs of ice on my head and back to securely drive pick into the slope. Aaron was standing in a rest position when it all started so his ax was in a cane position and he tried to push it as deep as he could while falling on the slope, but apparently did not because of very hard snow. That day I learned the reason of helmet. There were 4 or 5 major hits. Two of them took my helmet. One of them was so hard I was on the verge of loosing consciousness. One hit took my elbow which was barely outside of my helmet (forehead on forearm, facedown), I remember moving few inches up to protect the hand (or whatever left, I thought) after it. All other hits were shielded by backpack, which also had some consequences I’ll describe later. Aaron got a serious hit on his wrist holding the ace ax and his other wrist also got injured. He did not wear helmet and was very lucky to not take any hit in the head… He saw how two hits knocked me down the slope by foot each (those were the hits that drove the pick of my ice ax into the ice ). At this point he decided that I could get unconscious and would slide down, because we were roped it would yank him down the Finger as well. So he held his ax in cane position, hand above his head. The whole bombarding lasted for two minutes. When it eased a bit I quickly looked up and started moving back to Aaron. “Are you Ok?” “No” Oh shit! ‘Touching the void’ popped up in my head ‘What am I gonna do if he can’t move?’ Aaron did not feel his right wrist, could not hold ice ax in it and we both were very shocked. “Do you need emergency?” “No, we got to get out of here…” “Can you move, go?” “Yes, my right hand is bad” The slope below was very hard and icy, although not that steep. My hands were shaking. I looked at altimeter we had to downclimb about 900ft till the easy ground. We had less than an hour before sunrise and we clearly wanted to get out of the Finger by that time. We could not walk down, so we climbed face into slope, belaying each other. As soon as we got down and under protection of some rock outcrop near the Finger entrance Aaron asked for some painkillers. I tried to joke saying that I have two types of pills one is laxative another is a strong painkiller, but both are unmarked and forgot how to distinguish. Few nervous giggles. Then few more when I got the pillbox out of the top pouch of my backpack and it was shattered and all the pills were crumbled. “Just take a pinch of this stuff – at least half should be a painkiller”. In reality it was a mix of ibuprophen,and two types of painkillers I got from various dentist appointments. Sun was shining, we were safe and slowly moving towards 9200 camp. I was thinking about the accident. By that moment it seemed like nothing happened, or what happened did not happen with me, but with somebody else I know. It was a dull feeling of fading shock. By the time we arrived at camp the mountain was covered with lenticular cloud. _ I thought about the guys who were ahead of us. We almost caught up with them that night. Then I thought we would not summit anyway because of weather. I packed our stuff and we went down to Paradise. On the way back we agreed that official story for my wife would be a brutal fight for the last chocolate bar. I also thought that if Aaron did not notice the falling ice a second before it reached us we’d probably be dead. _ We met the other FF team on Paradise parking lot, they arrived few minutes after us - turned back in whiteout at 12000. One of the guys was also hit by the same ice fall. The falling ice was a serac that broke off the upper Nisqually glacier.
  15. Few pics from my day outing onto the Pyramid Peak. Westside road is open and Tahoma Creek trail is 'Ok'. Success Cleaver & South Tahoma Headwall Rainier South-West side Pyramid Peak in the middle of the picture Indian Henrys Hunting Ground Pyramid peak Strong wind at Tahoma creek
  16. Beta on Westside?

    Summited Pyramid Peak yesterday from Westside road. Trail is Ok, given that washouts are normal. Success cleaver looks good. But try to do it as soon as possible. I will post some pics later today.
  17. Mt Everest annotated panorama

  18. [TR] Mt Rainier- Fuhrer Finger 2/27/2005

    We did not use headlamps, moon was amazingly strong!.. But we saw your headlamps. Frankly, we did not expect any shit falling down before sunrise. That's why no helmet and those three rests. A lesson to learn. When I checked my hand at parking lot it did not have any signs of hits. But in two days... I got two massive blue-greenish bruises. I guess lots of tissue protected bones. Lucky...
  19. [TR] Mt Rainier- Fuhrer Finger 2/27/2005

    We suspected broken bones, but when Aaron went to emergency here in Kirkland he was told everything was Ok. My GPS unit got trashed, it was in the top pouch. When I came home and turned it on - it worked! At least one square inch of its panel was showing something So, yes, we were very very lucky...
  20. the best digital camera for the mountains

    this http://www.pentaximaging.com/products/product_details?reqID=1004&subsection=optio or this http://www.pentaximaging.com/products/product_details?reqID=1022&subsection=optio I've been using the 33WR for more than a year. I use two lithium AA batteries - never had any problems in cold conditions. Do not care if its wet, dirty or frozen, it just works. One caveat - lcd panel and the glass that protects the lens are somewhat exposed to tear and wear, so I carry it in a lens bag.
  21. water ice potential in Geneve

  22. Elbrus

    try searching thru www.mountain.ru - this site has few TRs and links to companies operating in this region.
  23. Washouts at MRNP

    bad. it was the only winter approach to Carbon Gl. area