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About Jimhamster

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  1. Wow! I can't believe how much the glacier on Batian has melted. Way back in 1981 we did the circuit of the mountain and hopped up Pt. Lenana. This was post Peace Corps and we had cleverly mailed our down sleeping bags home, figuring we wouldn't need them for our trans African trip. All we had for sleeping was a couple of wool blankets. We found a stash of flares at Minto's Hut (most huts we had to ourselves). It was so cold that we would light a flare in the hut to warm things up until the acrid smoke would drive us out. Like you said, Mt Kenya is a much better climbing destination that Killi, which was even popular back in the day. I can't imagine what it's like now. For a real treat hit the Rwenzori Mountains on the Uganda/Congo border. They were amazing. We didn't encounter anyone for the whole 5 days we were up there, just our ranger/guide with his rusty M-1.
  2. [TR] West McMillan Spire - 7/24/2011

    So you didn't need a rope or cramps?
  3. Trip: Ruby Mountain - South side Date: 7/6/2011 Trip Report: Ruby has always intrigued me. I figured that any peak the NPS wanted to build a tram on must have a killer view. Ruby did not disappoint. Headed up to Fourth of July Pass to spend the night before tackling the abandoned trail to Ruby. Campsite has one of the better views for such a low elevation. Water available above the two upper sites. Amazing there were NO BUGS the entire 3 days we were there, an experience I've never had in 40 years of backcountry traveling. Previous postings detail finding the "abandoned trail" sign so I'll concentrate on what happens after that point. We hit a big blowdown about 30 minutes in and lost the trail. Barged ahead and found some orange tape near the stream. Another bit of tape lead across the stream as well as one going up to the left. Big mistake. We should have gone left and uphill BEFORE we hit the creek. A previous TR spoke of staying slightly west of the ridge crest to avoid small cliffs. Maybe I errored on the word slightly, because an hour later saw us too far west below some cliffy territority in the Thunder Creek side of the valley. A short class 3 scramble and cedar schwack got us back on the crest. We hit snow at about 5,000'. The macro direction of where to go wasn't in doubt, it was the micro ie which route is most open was the only problem. Finally left the trees behind (they extend waaaay up it seems). Trudged up the final snow slope. Hit the first peak and called it good. Concern over the route down pulled us off after a 30 min stare around at every peak you can imagine. Hozomeen was the most impressive, but from Baker to Glacier the mountain gods were out in the brilliant blue. As a side note trailess Panther Creek looked super cool and wild. Headed down, stayed in the middle of the crest which bends towards Panther Creek. Stumbled across the trail right after we got off snow. Followed it down as it makes horse gradiant switchbacks all the way back and forth across the crest. Funny how you can begin to anticipate the trail builders method and "feel" where he put in the next switchback. Hit the campsite at 9pm. Gear Notes: Hiking sticks. Photos aren't on the interweb tubes, someday I'll figure it all out, or not. Approach Notes: Yeah we're slow.