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Everything posted by geosean

  1. [TR] Lincoln Peak - X Couloir 05/05/2019

    Sounds casual, don't know why it isn't super popular. There will probably be a line next weekend.
  2. [TR] [TR] Sahale Peak - Sahale Arm 04/28/2019

    When I was there on 4-20 C-J was pretty ugly from a skiing perspective, mostly avy debris the bottom half or more. Not sure if you're looking to climb it, probably doable.
  3. [TR] Sahale Peak - Sahale Arm 04/20/2019

    I would have added pics, but I didn't take any. I have so many pictures of the mountains, and my partners are not handsome enough. I believe it is pretty easy though.
  4. Oh, and I forgot to mention, regarding the lowering. Yes he could have prussiked back up the rope, we had all the equipment necessary for crevasse rescue.
  5. Jason, my sanguinity comes only after much reflection and decompressing on the issue. We talked a lot about it that night in the tent. It really makes me think about basically every snow anchor I have ever placed and not loaded simply because no one fell. Both the axe and the picket were buried vertically, clearly this was the critical mistake. I dug down through the powder into what I thought was firm snow, and tested it. I have decided that we need some snow school time to practice these techniques. We are pretty experienced snow climbers and I have placed pickets as pro a number of times, though mostly in spring conditions. Everything seemed secure. It was very eye opening to put it mildly.
  6. [TR] Sloan Peak - Corkscrew 11/17/2018

    Sorry for the delay, the road was a bit potholed but no big deal; that late in the season it wasn't especially brushy, pretty open forest really. It opened up by 5000', the worst of the forest was below 4000'. We didn't follow much of a trail but there was flagging all over. This might be a decent winter route if you could count on safe conditions on the east face traverse. I recommend the Sauk River approach.
  7. Glad to hear some people put in a bunch of work out there. Thank you! I didn't make it to Darrington this year - I just discovered Index. Maybe next spring I'll go back!
  8. Trip: Mount Challenger - Easy Ridge to Challenger Glacier Trip Date: 09/03/2018 Trip Report: Fred and I did Challenger in 3 days over the Labor Day weekend via Easy Ridge. Simple conditions/bragging report is all you will get since the route is pretty straightforward and well documented. Good trails and cool weather made 15.5 miles and 6500' vertical melt away to camp on Easy Ridge just before point 6553'. The next morning we descended and crossed the Perfect Impass. This was easy, ascend 150' up from the base of the buttress, boot tracks will aid you; follow a faint self system. The climb back out was better than it looked up to come red rap tat (sketchy to rap off of)! The Steph Abegg beta photo is only good when the Impass is filled with snow which it was not. We cruised over Perfect Pass and traversed the glacier to the NE ridge of Challenger. The various moats and bergschrunds appeared to be impassable so we took the rock to the left, scrambling in crampons, then up the steep snow arete to near the summit rocks. The top out was easy, 4 pitons and a fixed cam, a ridiculous amount of pro for 30' of 5.5 and a couple of scramble moves. 12 hours camp to camp. Down to camp again and out the next day in the fog, perfect timing on the weather. Easy Ridge Trail down low, it improves higher up: Challenger Glacier from Perfect Pass: Fred on the glacier: Looking up to near the summit from the ridge. Luna Cirque: Fred's awesome summit shot of me, thanks!: Hiking out the next morning: Gear Notes: Glacier Gear, 4 slings Approach Notes: Trails all in good condition, Chilliwack River was an easy ford, attaining Easy Ridge was better than many "maintained" trails.
  9. Trip: Sherpa, Argonaut, Colchuck, Dragontail - Sherpa - N Ridge, Argonaut - NW Arete, Colchuck, Dragontail - Walkups Trip Date: 08/09/2018 Trip Report: @Albuquerque Fred and I had a great 4 days over August 9-12 in the Stuart Range. Fred put this plan together to avoid permits and maximize climbing. It worked great, good camping, sufficient water, great climbs and not bad approaching. It was extremely hot the first two days however, we did mostly avoid smoke. We hiked in on Thursday afternoon in 90-degree heat and camped at about 5700' NW of Argonaut Peak in a beautiful sandy patch amongst the boulders. The next day we did the North Ridge of Sherpa and back to camp. The climb was fun but we cheated a bit by following ledges to the left because we were so hot and worried about water that it made taking the tough line a hard choice. It would be a great climb if you stayed faithful to the ridge crest I'm sure. The crux pitches were 5.8 as advertised, but easy pro and not long. The descent went mostly per Nelson and Potterfield, definitely "arduous". Day three we carried camp over the NW Arete of Argonaut and down to Colchuck Col. This was a great climb with an easy descent or raps and walking to Colchuck. After lots of food and water in camp and some sheltering from wind and brewing rain we ran up Colchuck. I may have said something like "we better run if we want to avoid the rain" but I didn't mean it literally... Fred did. Day four we walked up Dragontail and down Asgaard Pass and out to the car, passing ten thousand people. Up to this point we only saw three guys in the woods on their way out from Sherpa on day one. Awesome. We had planned to descend Asgaard because there is a lot of ice exposed on the Colchuck Glacier. I was taking a break from my phone on this trip but I know @Albuquerque Fred got some photos. Maybe he will share! Gear Notes: Single rack sufficient, lots long of runners 60m rope rock shoes approach shoes No axe or crampons needed the whole trip, we carried them for training. Approach Notes: Trail, woods - no real brush to speak of by Cascades standards.
  10. Nice report, thanks for sharing. You make everything sound so chill! I suspect from other reports that much of this trip is harder than it comes across in your report. It sounds like it was a cool trip with some personal history to make it even more meaningful. What did you take for footwear?
  11. I forgot to mention this: we accessed the Arete from the west, climbing an easy gully on the west side to the notch at 7400'. This was an easy gully hike, scree, but not as bad as access to Liberty Bell for example. It did require us to do some pitched climbing and class 2 hiking to get to the base of the route proper. One could probably access the notch at the start of the climb from the west as well, it looked easy also; there was a tiny bit of easy snow that might be avoided. The standard approach gully looked gnarly, with discontinuous snow and moat issues for sure.
  12. What were you guys up to in that area? Something awesome?
  13. Trip: Half Moon - North Ridge Trip Date: 06/23/2018 Trip Report: Me, Fred, and Dave climbed the north ridge of Half Moon (part of Kangaroo Ridge) on June 23. We went in knowing almost nothing: it is 5.7 and you climb up from the notch, that's it. There wasn't hardly even a reference to the route on the internet, a somewhat vague Summitpost page written about a climb many years ago (before I was born), and a short paragraph in Beckey. We made short work of the approach gully due to some steps kicked seemingly that morning... did someone else climb to the notch that day? Maybe they went down the other side to access the east side of Big Kangaroo? It was super cold and windy at the notch, I think we were all wearing pretty much everything we brought. Fred lead out on really roughly textured granite with lots of features... unfortunately most of the features turned out to be hollow flakes. Fred lead two pitches up a featured face to a large sandy bench passing two bolted rap stations (one was good, the other pretty old and manky with home made hangers). I took the next lead up what looked like a great lie back corner but turned out to be decomposed granite with crystals popping out and hollow flakes. I placed a few pieces for about 40' then the pro and rock quality deteriorated and it felt safer to just run it out. At the top was a large semi-detached flake/pinnacle about body sized or larger that I had to put my entire body on at one point... I was pretty glad it held, and a bit surprised honestly. I thought it was fun but I don't know that my partners shared my enthusiasm for this part. At least it got me warmed up after the cold belay at the notch! We walked left on a sandy bench for about a rope length then I lead up again basically straight up the arete. The rock was better here and the climbing easier. One lead got me on to walking terrain; I belayed my partners up and we scrambled another rope length to the summit. The summit was nice and flat, large, sunny, calm, warm. Beautiful. We laid around for about 45 min cloud-bathing and trying to identify peaks in the low ceiling to the west. Then we rapped and downclimbed the route. We had double ropes for climbing with three so we did a couple of double rope rappels. You could do the route with a single 60m but we wanted to avoid rapping off the crappy old bolts. We did remove and replace a lot of old webbing so aside from the old bolts the raps should be pretty good. This has become a bit of a thing for me lately, there is so much trash laying around the mountains in the form of rap tat. If you add a piece, please take one home with you as well. On the ascent in the valley: Easy snow travel: Looking back on descent, the route is more or less the skyline: Dave about to wipe out while boot skiing: Sorry I didn't get any pics while on route, I'm trying to get better about that. Gear Notes: single rack to 3" aluminum axe for the ascent, not really needed but habbit Approach Notes: Easy due to snow on the slope, will be crappier later as it melts and turns to loose scree.
  14. That looks like an awesome line. Nice work putting it on everyone's map.
  15. [TR] Half Moon - North Ridge 06/23/2018

    Lonely is right! I forgot to mention that we were the first people to sign the summit register in four years! I normally don't even look at registers but on a lonely mountain I usually sign them. This one was a tiny pocket notebook, less than half full, and placed there in 1968 on the third ascent.
  16. Thanks for sharing Fred. Well done.
  17. Trip: Jack Mountain & Crater Mountain - NohokOmeen Headwall & South Ridge Trip Date: 05/26/2018 Trip Report: Fred and I had amazing plans for a (for us) heroic trip... The Great Jack Off. Along the East Bank Trail, up the Nohokomeen Headwall of Jack, down the south face, with Crater to boot. The trip reports we read from the party on the Nohokomeen on the 12th helped with the scant beta a lot, thanks! This route isn't even in Beckey if you can believe it! For purity of the trip we hiked car-to-car the loop starting from the East Bank Trailhead at Panther Creek. Other reports have enough info on the approach I figure so I'll keep it to the basics. Not much brush - none really by Cascades standards; the hillside to gain the May Creek Basin was brutal though. We pushed on and camped at about 7600' on the Nohokomeen Glacier. This made it about 12 miles and 7100' vert of gain on day 1... whew! Forest uphill from the East Bank Trail: Our first view of the headwall from near the toe of the glacier was not encouraging, but we knew we had to take a look at least. Headwall from camp: Hozomeen from camp: It got cold that night, there was frost on the tent and the snow was very solid. We left camp at 0600 and had only a short walk to the base of the wall. We found a route up, over a bridge in the 'schrund and through the manky rocks. My calves were killing me so Fred led the whole wall both of us soloing. It felt steep! It's amazing how the slope changes when the snow is frozen and you can only get front points or an inch of boot at the most. It was definitely about 600' of "don't look down" terrain for me. Softer snow would have mage it a lot more secure and easier, but we made it. Approximate route, it looks like a lot more traversing than it felt like. Maybe it's just perspective: We were on the summit by 0800 I think. It was breezy but not bad. We were worried the downclimb on the south face would be too solid so we waited around for a while identifying peaks and enjoying being off our feet. Down climbing the much softer snow on the south face was a piece of cake after the Nohokomeen; until we got to the cliff band at about 8000'. We didn't know the route and had only a 30m rope so it took some looking but we nailed it. We did two 15m rappels off a crappy loose boulder with like 10 pieces of tat on it down onto snow again where we could traverse out to easy ground on the SE ridge. We took a loooong lunch break and rested our brains in the warm sun. Basically all the ground from there until 4800' on the Crater Mountain Trail was snow covered with the exception of the Crater scramble section. We camped at Jerry Lakes early on day two and had a leisurely afternoon. Day three was a tame snow walk and easy 3rd class scramble up Crater and a slog out down the trail and along Ruby Creek to the car. We could have hitchhiked the last 3 miles or so but we are purist and completed the loop - my shoulders were pissed. Tarn near Jerry Lakes camp: Lake and waterfalls below Crater Mountain. We gained the trail shortly after here: Maybe Fred will post some more photos, he was a lot better about taking them than I was. Gear Notes: 30m rope glacier gear 2 axes aluminum crampons trail shoes celebratory brandy Approach Notes: All the trails in the lowland were in good shape, a bit of blowdown on the Crater Mountain trail. Lots of creek crossings, all dry on the East Bank Trail, one ford on the Crater Mountain Trail. Crews were out working on the trail near Granite Creek.
  18. Trip: Eldorado Peak - East Ridge Trip Date: 04/22/2018 Trip Report: It's a bit late but me and Fred skied Eldorado on Sunday 4-22-18. We did a TH bivy in the car Saturday night (after helping dig a guy out of the snow 100' from the parking lot). There was a tiny bit of snow lingering in the shade at the lot, but none in the woods. The log crossing wasn't nearly as bad as I had heard (though the water was low). Pretty typical Cascade stuff: We were off at 0600 carrying skis wearing ski boots for about 2100', man is it nice to start under sunny skies and not with headlamps. At the start of the boulder field there was enough snow to skin but not by all that much. The snow was pretty variable, wind affected, but it went pretty fast. We crossed into the Roush Creek drainage at 6200' after a brief attempt to do so at 6500' (there is a cliff there). The drop down was only about 70' of easy plunge stepping until we put skis back on. Skinning to our lunch spot at 7500' went smoothly from there. Skinning the boulder field: Shitty views towards Cascade Pass: Crossing the creek divide, this was 6500', too high: Lunch spot: I think it was around noon when we took a long break to melt snow and have lunch at the plateau. Sun-screened up we headed up again. On the ridge the snow was firm and wind affected, it didn't warm up at all despite the hot sun and pretty warm air. We skinned to within about 150' of the summit where we switched to booting with crampons and axes. The ridge was a piece of cake, wind packed snow made for bomber steps and solid cramponing. After obligatory ridge photos we took some time to identify peaks and enjoy the clear spring views, planning future trips, then back to the skis. Looking east toward Forbidden, Goode, etc. Summit ridge: I had thought that the snow on the ridge would be a horrid ski but it was more powdery than anticipated and was actually lots of fun. We shot as far across the snowfield as we could, then shuffled and boot packed a little over the hump. The ski down from about 7000' was horrid sticky sludge, but views and silence were pretty amazing. We spoke to another group that was headed for the NW Couloir at the divide ridge. How did it go? From there more horridly awesome sludge down to the boulder field where the steeper angle made for suuuuper sketchy traversing causing the entire slope to slough off as wet slides. Way dangerous, though its probably all sloughed off to firmer stuff now. From there we hiked out for a round trip of 9.2 miles, 7100' in 12 hours. Gear Notes: Axe, crampons, helmet, ski touring gear. Didn't take a rope, glad of it. Approach Notes: Hiked about 2100' in ski boots from the TH.
  19. Trip: Sherman Peak - Squak Glacier Trip Date: 01/14/2018 Trip Report: It's a little late for a conditions report but me Fred and Joel climbed Sherman Peak (the one on Baker) with skis/splitboard on 1-14-18. It took 15 hours with the 3+ miles of road skinning both directions. Conditions were actually really great except in the morning the sun/rain crust made for some hairy skinning until we got above around 6500'. Rain crust reflecting the sunrise: Skinning with ski crampons on, Joel decided to snowshoe the icy spots: We skinned more or less north up the ridge from the summer trailhead, using snow machine tracks where it helped with the trail breaking. Above tree line there was a solid crust, sometimes icy, but we never had to break trail again. By the time we were headed off the summit, about 2pm, everything had softened up nicely and even the wind affected areas were decent. We got back to the summer trailhead just about dusk for a blistering (literally) skin back to the truck. 6300 vertical feet of skiing total, plus some downhill skiing and some hiking. Sherman summit from the 9800' saddle at the crater rim: Looking back to the ski down on the way out: Gear Notes: skis, ski crampons, crampons, axe Approach Notes: 3.1 miles of road skinning from the sno-park closure. Good coverage from the TH to the summit.
  20. 2017/18 Oregon Washington ice

    Just posted a report on Millennium Wall near Leavenworth:
  21. Trip: Millennium Wall Ice - Leavenworth - Various TR Trip Date: 12/30/2017 Trip Report: Millennium Wall was in but wet on Saturday. We did a few top rope laps. There were some areas that were leadable with good hard ice under the slush. It was tough breaking trail basically the whole way through Cascade Concrete, so go do it soon and keep the boot pack clear! Gear Notes: Usual Approach Notes: Skis, snowshoes, boot pack, tried it all... nothing worked great.
  22. Me, Andy, Joel and Fred climbed Shuksan via the Sulphide Glacier route the weekend of the 9th-10th. We took skis (and a split board) to within a few hundred feet of the summit, carrying them for only the first 2 miles of trail walking. It was strange to travel up into such warmer weather with the inversion going on. It was winter at Baker Lake, the lower parts of the mountain were spring like, and the summit was wintry again. We camped at the normal glacier camp on Saturday after getting an alpine start of 10:45 am from the TH. With the winter darkness setting in I think we went to bed about 6 or 7 pm, it was sweet to sleep for so long. Up at 5, moving at 6 we skinned up wind crust and crud to maybe a third of the way up the summit pyramid before switching to crampons and axes. Fred led the booting all the way to the top through wind crust on top of pow on top of verglas. The summit was amazing, quiet, lonely, and calm! After a somewhat mediocre upper portion the bottom half of the Sulphide was pretty good skiing due to the sun having warmed the wind crud. My light mountaineering skis were sub par in the crud, but everyone had fun. Back at camp at 11:30 for lunch and water in t-shirts. We did a combination of strategies on the descent, but two of us skied all the way to the dirt on the trail traverse below 3000' before booting it to the car. I think it is safe to say a good time was had by all! It was amazing to have the mountain to ourselves for like 28 hours. Views were fantastic and weather/conditions darn good. I was particularly glad to make it since I was 0-2 on ski attempts on this route. Hiking in wearing long underwear: Skinning up the ridge: Sunrise: Summit gully: Summit views:
  23. [TR] Mt Thompson - West Ridge 12/09/2017

    Nice, that looks awesome! Thanks for posting and fueling the imagination.
  24. [TR] Mt Shuksan - Sulphide Ski Tour

    BTW the new website makes writing trip reports waaaaaay easier! Loved it. Now everyone else write one! I don't believe that no one is out there climbing!!