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HHinkkala

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About HHinkkala

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  • Birthday 09/12/1985
  1. Wow, epic TR and glad you were not injured. Regarding snow pro, totally agree it can be very difficult to place solid snow pro. I have rapped off T-slot pickets but nowadays I will opt to carry both a msr snow fluke and a picket on steep snow routes for this reason of snow variability. I have bounce tested snow flukes (run/slid full speed while roped in) and been pleasantly surprised how well they hold in different snow conditions since they dig deeper into the snow, particularly the newer ones....It took a fair amount of digging/effort to retrieve them after loading...
  2. [TR] Mt. Shuksan - Price Glacier 08/04/2018

    Holy sh*t !!! lol.... 4 days + 2 days waiting on weather + helicopter resupply....That is certainly commitment to see it through....
  3. [TR] Mt. Shuksan - Price Glacier 08/04/2018

    Nice work on the route! Can you copy/past link to the other epic TR? Sounds like it would be a good read...
  4. 2017/18 Oregon Washington ice

    Nice work on climbing both those routes over the weekend! I'm curious how you approached capricorn, did you have to climbed any of the millar pillar routes (unsure if they are in?), or were you able to go around them? I tried to go left up another drainage and got totally lost last year so any info would be much appreciated! Cheers!
  5. Ya wow, that would have been one a hell of an approach. I do think folks were generally hardier back in the day...
  6. Got it! Had to delete the bullet point circles then convert to ubb/plain!
  7. Struggling to get my copy paste from word to work, even with using the article formatter, and html to ubb convertor. Any tips?
  8. Winter Ascent NE Buttress of the West Lion - AI3 / M3-4, 450m Graham Rowbotham and I climbed the NE Buttress of the West Lion on Feb 25, 2017. Another party had posted that they climbed it about a week prior and I knew we had to get on it asap before conditions changed. I have wanted to write a TR on this route for a quite a while now since I'm not aware that there is any information available for this route in winter. I have done the summer version of this route which is a bushy alpine 5.6 but in the winter it is not the same route and is significantly more technical. Jesse and I had tried this line a few years back, conditions were much different on that trip and a rocky headwall near the top of the 3rd pitch, which was easy to overcome this past Saturday, was on my previous attempt rimed up with unconsolidated sugar snow to the point that no pro or line of ascent was evident. We bailed. This weekend however was a different story and it became evident to me that the conditions on this route, and alpine routes on the north shore generally speaking, can be very temperamental. This can certainly effect the difficulty so please take my attempt at grading the route with a grain of salt. Overall this is a very unique and fun line that is not necessarily hard but it is also not trivial. It requires careful considering for climbing over thinly ice covered rock, it has some low grade dry tooling sections, lots of run-outs and requires contending with less than secure snow over very steep and exposed terrain. It does also have some wonderful frozen sections and some bushiness in places. Bailing off this route is also complex and in most places requires you to rapp the entire buttress to the bottom, (except if you bail East from the lowest tree between pitches 2-3, then you barely reach the NE gully with barely a meter to spare with 60m ropes, like me and Jesse found out by mere chance in fading light...), this is because there is no certainty you will find intermediate ice/trees/pro on the vertical cliffs that surround this ridge route. Nevertheless, I would still recommend this route to others in the Lower Mainland looking for worthy winter alpine objectives close to home. Our times for the route were as follows: -Left the car at 6:15am -Started soloing the North Face bypass at 10:15am -Summited at 3:45pm -Finished x3 raps back into North Bowl at 4:45pm -Back at car at 7:15pm Our approach for the route was up the standard 4.5km (600m gain) logging road uphill from Lions bay to the Lions trail turnoff. From there it's about another km or so uphill for another 500m vertical, then you reach the first main North snow bowl/basin. The descent gully from the notch between the summit and the ridge is obvious from this location. We stashed our poles and snowshoes here and traversed across the basin to another notch, from there we down climbed the gully on the backside and continued across to the start off the route. We opted to go up the North Face bypass, which is about 200m long of steep snow and a short section of grade 2ish ice at the bottom. We followed this up and leftward to where we set up our first belay at an obvious tree high on the ridge crest. The rest of the belayed pitches are broken down below: Pitch 1 - 40m, AI2 / easy mixed The first section takes you mostly straight up the ridge proper over steep snow and thinly ice cover rock steps. There were a few sections where I climbed with my hands over jugs. Gear is slim, mainly a slung bush or two. At one point near the top you travel a bit left prior to getting up to the next obvious stand of trees. Pass these trees and head to one higher up near/below a triangular shaped rock that gives a comfortable, sheltered, flat belay perch. Pitch 2 - 65m AI3 / M4 To me this felt like the most technical section on the route. From the belay you head right and around the triangular rock and then straight up and leftward. from up here it is possible to just traverse 10-15m left straight into the gully but we opted to go up over a steep rock step that lead you onto a higher leftward leaning ramp below the face (seen better in topo photo), small cams were used primarily up to here. Then follow the gully that typically provides great styrofoam ice up to a bushy area where the angle begins to ease. This will bring you to a junction where you can either go left or right around a small buttress. The last portion either provides protection for screws, or slung bushes, and the belay is from a slung tree/bush below the junction. Pitch 3 - 40m, AI2+ / M3-4 From the belay head right at the junction and up a gully that then puts you above the exposed North face. After about 20m you come to a 10m headwall. There is a large body size rock on the left side that you have to squirm up and stand on top of. From here there is a few decent cam placements above your left shoulder. The angle above begins to ease a bit and provides thinly ice covered rocky bulge that you mantle over. Thereafter you front point another 10-15m to a large tree for a belay. Pitch 4 - 40, AI2+ / M3-4 Climb immediately up to the left hand side of the ridge crest for about 15m. Here you arrive at a few cruxy moves, about a body length or two, that gains access back onto the ridge, which requires mantling onto the crest from a bouldery stance with insane exposure. Below this Graham slung a horn and he found cam slot after brushing away snow from a crack. The moves onto the ridge requiring some drytooling as well as gingerly climbing up a smear of ice less than an inch thick at the bottom. After this you follow up 30m along a knife shaped ridge that drops precipitously on both sides so travel with care. Continue along the ridge and into/through an obvious large stand of trees that provides a belay. Pitch 5 - 25m to 35m Steep Snow The last section of the route climbs up very steep snow to top out onto the summit. For the descent we did two rapps down the regular scramblers route. At the bottom we climbed back up to a notch. Previous times I have simply down climbed the gully on the other side of that notch but this time there was a huge cornice over it so we rapped from a tree a little ways back from the cornice. Gear we brought: - 70m twin/half ropes - Small set of cams #2C4, #.5C4, #1-3 TCU, #2 link cam (used them all except the #2C4) - x6 nuts (did not use) - x8 short screws (used a couple) - small set of pins (did not use) - Snow fluke (used on most sections) should have brought an extra fluke or picket. - 12 draws/extendables, probably only needed 8-10, definitely leaned more on extendables. Route top viewed from the North Route topo as seen from the ridge just East. View of the first North basin with descent gully visible View of the North face bypass Me soloing up the North face bypass Graham coming up the 1st pitch Graham heading up the 2nd pitch Me heading up and right on the 3rd pitch Graham heading up the 4rth pitch Looking back down just below the summit, the clouds came in and out that day Graham and I on the summit Rapping the cornice This route seemed to provide a little bit of everything, from great one stick styrofoam ice to manky snow that seemed to barely hold your body weight to fairly significant runouts and thinly covered rock. The conditions for this route can also be quite fickle, last time I tried it we were able to use mostly screws but this time the styrofoam ice, which placed tools beautifully,did not really take any screws they basically pulled straight out. I would definitely recommend others to check this route out if they are looking for a challenging nearby winter alpine adventure. The longish approach tends to make this, or other routes on the Lions, a fairly long day. Cheers, Henrik
  9. Selling my baturas size 44.5, they are too narrow for my feet, otherwise i love these boots. They have been used on only a few outings, they are in excellent condition. I'm willing to meet in BC or Washington. Email hhinkkala@gmail.com for photos, contact info. Cheers, Henrik
  10. [TR] Mount Sir Donald - NW Ridge 8/20/2016

    Shhhhhhhhhhh..... Exactly...lol Few climbers could or would adhere to that requirement anyways, I think many Rangers realize this (the ones that climb), not all though. Running into a grizzly is one your least hazards when climbing a peak...unless your that ice climber in the Rockies from last winter...son of a gun!
  11. [TR] Mount Sir Donald - NW Ridge 8/20/2016

    Since we showed up so late both times, bivyed in parking area behind car, and leave so early we have never confronted a ranger. If you come during the day when a ranger is at the post near the trail head you will probably be questioned...
  12. [TR] Mount Sir Donald - NW Ridge 8/20/2016

    Thanks and yes there are many stories of nasty descents! But I can certainly see how it could be easy to get yourself in scary terrain. The descent did feel a bit counter-intuitive in that you want to head over to the dike but you have to keep telling yourself not yet, and continue downward. We were very glad it was snow free. Hopefully other folks are able to find the easy path down similar to what we did...
  13. Trip: Mount Sir Donald - NW Ridge Date: 8/20/2016 Trip Report: Richard and I climbed the NW ridge of Sir Donald on August 20. After a week or so of high pressure and high temps it seemed primed for another attempt. We had tried the NW ridge last year in July but were thwarted by freezing temps and rime covered rock at the elevation of the bypass/West face ledges. Since there are plenty of TR's I'll simply share some thoughts and highlights of the route. Wait until late August to do the route after the snow has melted, so that no crampons/axe are needed and you can easily descend along the bypass ledges. You also need high temperatures in the valley to climb the route comfortably, even though it was 30 degrees Celsius in the valley it was only 7 degrees at the summit, add a strong wind and shade makes for cold hands and feet near the top. Our times on the route seemed average based on other trip reports, just over 11hrs car to car. We drove up from Vancouver Friday evening, arrived in camp at 11:00pm, left car at 4:15am, starting climbing from the col at 7:15am, got to summit at 10:30am, finished all rappels at 1:30pm, back at car 3:30pm. For our gear we brought a single 8.9mm rope, single rack of cams, 4 nuts, 4draws and 4 extendables. We broke out the climbing into three long simul blocks. On average we placed one or two pieces every 60meters. There are lots of terrain belays on the route. When in doubt stick to the ridge crest. It may be steep but jugs are everywhere. Remember to rappel to the North side at station #4 to avoid hanging in space, as the parks brochure and other reports mention. http://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/pn-np/bc/glacier/activ/~/media/pn-np/bc/glacier/visit/visit15/Sir%20Donald%20Brochure-EN-2012.ashx As we were coming up the last summit portion we passed several parties that were rappelling down in the cold windy shade of the upper ridge. With curiosity I asked why they didn't take the summit bypass since it looked dry and in the sun, they all said they had read horror stories so decided not to. Well our experience was very different from what we heard. We simply followed what looked like the common descent trail, well trodden in the scree, but we also did not turn too early toward the North. We actually went in the opposite direction (skiers left) for a good ways during the upper portion until we basically got cliffed/slabbed out, thereafter we slowly meandered skiers right and downward enjoying a leisurely walk back to the NW ridge. The close up photo of the bypass on the park brochure felt spot on. There were a few spots of slabby down climbing but honestly it was significantly easier and mellower than either of us had expected. I think the key is to not turn too early toward the NW ridge/quartz dike but instead travel down and skiers left until you're roughly at, or slightly above, the quartz dike that you eventually traverse under. I also saw photos of what other people had descended and we did not go down those same gullies or slopes. My guess is we followed the actual bypass fairly accurately, there were also carrions toward the lower half of the bypass which to our delight led us in the right direction. The rest of the descent went smoothly with us simul-rappelling interspersed with down climbing on the upper portions. There is a newer set of rap stations (two stations, #11 & #12 on park brochure) at the very bottom prior to the snow that prevents you from having to descend on the snow slope. Located on the slabs to skiers right. These are hard to see until you are very close to them. Google photo of the route viewed from the road Coming up the lower third of the ridge with another party from Virginia Heading up just above the bypass ledges Coming up the upper portion near the summit, it was blowing good up here Cresting the top, boy was it nice to get back into the sun Richard enjoying the views View toward the descent gully for the bypass ledges/West face descent Photo of the descent, with the quartz dike that we were headed toward, glad there was no snow on this section! Richard descending the morraine This is a fantastic route to say the least and an obvious classic. Cheers, Henrik
  14. I have discovered when there is no gear available there is always a spot to place a large bird beak...thats when you know things have become desperate. Congrats on what was obviously a challenging and complex climb.
  15. Right on, the foster always delivers a good time!
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