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Kyle M

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Kyle M last won the day on September 15

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About Kyle M

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    journeyman

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    climberkyle.com
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    Software Engineer
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    Seattle Metro
  1. Trip: Chiwaukum Range - Chiwaukum High Route Trip Date: 09/09/2021 Trip Report: This definitely isn't alpine climbing, and nothing exceeded class 3, but I think it is kinda interesting... John Berude and I completed a high traverse of the Chiwaukum Range in a single push. We started at the Lake Ethel Trailhead and ended at Hatchery Creek, summitting Big C, Big Lou, and Big Jim along the way. It was definitely the hardest high route thing I have onsited in a day and one of the best days I have had out there with the scenery and fall colors. It measured 32 miles and 14k ft gain, mostly off trail, and took us 16 hours. Full TR: https://climberkyle.com/2021/09/09/chiwaukum-high-route/ The most interesting part was getting between the Glacier Creek and South Fork Chiwaukum drainages. We utilized the pass to the east of Pt 7955. The south side of the pass looks improbably on a topo map, and there is indeed a cliff there. But one can follow ledges westward and through the cliff band miraculously. A beautiful morning in the Chiwaukum. Above Cup Lake. Some exposed scrambling on Big C. The beautiful Glacier Creek drainage. Looking back on the key ledge that gets you through the cliffs near Pt 7955. Vibrant orange near Cape Horn. On the summit of Big Lou. Nearing the summit of Big Jim. Gear Notes: Running shoes, poles, running vests. Approach Notes: Leave Lake Ethel Trail right before going down to the lake and enter the alpine! Hatchery Creek has over a hundred blowdowns.
  2. Bolts on Little Sister

    I heard (from a guide) that it was guides that put them in, along with the piton anchors on Green Creek Arete. I'm not sure why they put them in however.
  3. @Otto Dylan told me about this route since he had done it a few years ago. I believe Darin was the first to really publicize this official "circuit":
  4. Trip: Twin Sisters Range - Green Creek Circuit Trip Date: 08/19/2021 Trip Report: @thedylan and @jenny.abegg and I did the classic Green Creek Circuit. It was a super fun day! I'm mostly posting to share details about the late season conditions, since this seemed more like an early summer thing. https://climberkyle.com/2021/08/19/green-creek-circuit/ We took advantage of some beta that some nice people had put in a log bridge about 1/4 mile downstream from the usual river crossing. There also is a Tyrolean if that suits you more. I will include a photo of where the bridge is. Hopefully this becomes a regular bridge! My track for where the bridge and according trails are. The trail to the bridge leaves the road with flagging. Trail is in surprisingly good shape, follow the climber's trail into the Green Creek Cirque. The Arete was awesome and then we found running water beneath the Sisters Glacier. The NE Ridge of South Twin was very enjoyable and the clouds shuffling by were beautiful. All the chossy descents were pretty darn chossy with no snow. We kicked off some pretty big slides and had to be careful. I definitely understand how snow would make this more enjoyable, but it is still manageable. Jaw's Tooth to Skookum was absolutely stunning! The 5.6 crux layback on Jaw's Tooth felt pretty real in approach shoes, but Jenny of course soloed it in style. I definitely enjoyed a rope. The crux 5.6 layback. So good! Jenny on Skookum Peak. Wow! With the clouds on Skookum. Note that a 30m rope is barely enough for the rap off Jaw's Tooth. We entered the clouds as we climbed up Little Sister and did the left arete. Maybe there is a better way to start it, because we started with about 100 ft of unprotectable face climbing that felt much harder than 5.4, with small downward sloping holds. Then it returned to excellent rock up the long climb to the summit. We did most of the ridge traverse to Cinderella before just bailing to the scree and then ascending the easy west ridge of Cinderella. From the summit, we just dropped to the north down slabs towards the edge of the Green Creek glacier. We had no issues with the glaciers on either sides: super easy to cross, no moat problems, no crampons even used. It looked like you could get on the Green Creek Glacier in a myriad of spots. Overall, this was a super fun day! The circuit definitely goes just fine late season, but it is probably a little slower with the chossy descents and you have to be careful with the loose rock. But if you are impatient like me, go for it! Gear Notes: Approach shoes, 30m half rope, small to medium cams, tricams and nuts (not really used), slings, crampons and ice ax (not used), helmet Approach Notes: See the map above for where the log bridge was placed. The river maybe could have been forded, but it would be a little scary.
  5. Trip: Bailey Range - Full Bailey Range Traverse + Olympus Trip Date: 07/31/2021 Trip Report: https://climberkyle.com/2021/07/31/the-bailey-range-traverse/ Nick, Sam, Rio and I did a Bailey Range loop through Olympus starting and ending at Sol Duc over 5 days. It measured 61 miles and 26k ft gain. It was incredibly beautiful and rugged, as epic as the Ptarmigan or any other classic North Cascade High Route. My main beta contribution is that I think there is a better route between Queets Basin and the Humes Glacier. This is purely hypothetical, but I think one could drop to 3300 ft and then ascend relatively bush free river gravel bars up towards the Humes, instead of that henious sidehilling and ravine crossing. Blue shows our route, red are the theoretical better routes. Glaciers were fine, but do bring real crampons for the bare ice! Crystal Pass route in fine shape. Gear Notes: Standard UL backpacking gear, bear can, La sportiva Ultra Raptors, strap on aluminum crampons, ice ax, lightweight glacier gear Approach Notes: Sol Duc in and out.
  6. Trip: Darrington - Squire Creek Wall -> Buckeye -> Whitehorse Trip Date: 06/19/2021 Trip Report: @jenny.abegg and I did a linkup of Skeena26 on Squire Creek Wall, Buckeye Peak, and Whitehorse. It was a full value 16 hour day, even with nearly everything going "right". Super fun, if you don't mind some jungling and adventure climbing. The MP approach beta for Skeena26 is spot on. We did not find the bolts until the top of P3, and from there on it was still hard to follow the route as the bolts hide in the shade. The upper section of the buttress above the route is pretty blue collar, as is the top of Squire Creek Wall. We were happy to be on snow climbing up to Buckeye Peak. The ridge heading north from Buckeye was very aesthetic, featuring mid fifth class climbing over steep gendarmes with wild exposure. We did a few pitches and a few rappels and then ended up at the SE Ridge of Whitehorse. The SE Ridge definitely felt a bit fifth class to us for a few hundred feet, but we were definitely pretty tired. It is "Beckey 4th class" after all. The rock is ok. Rappel over the bergschrund, then long hike out. https://climberkyle.com/2021/06/19/the-darrington-rodeo/ D-Town is cool! Skeena26 is definitely worth checking out! Gear Notes: Single 60 m rope was enough. A few moderate sized cams, lots of long runners. Approach Notes: About 6-8 minutes after the official Squire Creek Trail sign, there is a white rock cairn. This marks the trail, which leads down to Squire Creek. Found a log crossing just downstream. Then hike up the trail on the other side.
  7. WA Ice Conditions 2020-21

    Whitepine Ice delivers! Josh's route "Doctor's Orders" was truly a gem, definitely worth checking out. He put up the routes on mountain project: https://www.mountainproject.com/area/120310945/whitepine-ice-mixed. He fully realizes there might be established names for these often-climbed routes, but he just figured he would give them some names for the MP page. And here are some more photos from my blog: https://climberkyle.com/2021/02/20/whitepine-ice/ Not sure if these pillars will survive the rain the next day or so, but if they do, I bet they'll be solid next weekend with more cold temps.
  8. [TR] Sperry Peak - East Gully 01/23/2021

    Sick! I cannot wait to get back on this one! I wonder if it was also good conditions for the incredible north face of Sperry.
  9. [TR] Chair Peak - NE Buttress 01/17/2021

    Great work! So much snow that the usual anchors are buried - incredible!
  10. I remember in January 2019 when Jacob and I reached the top of the Melakwa Flows and turned around and laid eyes on the beauty. We remarked how it could be "the Winter Dance of Snoqualminix!". But it was far above our pay grade at the time. So psyched someone could finally go send it. Some more enticing photos of it, from a scouting trip around Christmas 2020. Top of the flow is visible in the bottom right. Visible once again upper left of the image.
  11. WA Ice Conditions 2020-21

    @Doug_Hutchinson and I checked out the Roosevelt Flows yesterday. Most of the ice was rotten and aerated with snow clinging to it, just like most everything else we've seen in the snoqualmie area recently. We climbed the thin gully feature, which went at WI2+/3- for 60m. There's a lot of potential here, but none of the climbs are really in. Definitely worth the trek when it's in! https://climberkyle.com/2020/12/28/roosevelt-ice-exploration/
  12. WA Ice Conditions 2020-21

    Checked out the Melakwa Valley today. There's lots of ice forming, and maybe some is climbable, but definitely not protectable. Very thin and lots of snow sitting on the ice so I presume it's aerated. Hot Tubbs. Melakwa Flows. Also, Source Lake Line not in. Other random ice around Snow Lake - same status. For more details, see our ice observations page! https://cascade-ice.com/observations/28
  13. Ice Observations Page

    @Doug_Hutchinson in all seriousness, I wanted to include historical weather data that led up to a particular observation and compare it with current weather patterns, but the data costs anywhere from $10-$50 per month, so I wasn't about to do that on my own money.
  14. Ice Observations Page

    So for this winter, as @Doug_Hutchinson alluded to, I present to the ice community a new observations page: https://cascade-ice.com/observations. I think that we could record observations of ice in the field in a more organized, easy to search manner, with location pins. Over many years, I believe that this format could have a lot of value because of its clarity and searchability. My dream would be to display historical weather patterns that led to certain observations and awesome insight like that. Facebook posts get buried after a few days. CC Threads are great, but can be tricky to search through and it can be challenging to describe exact locations. This isn't meant to replace CC or anything, more augment it. It's an experiment. I welcome feedback. This observations page I will maintain with submissions from the community. To make development easier, there's no form for user submissions, just send us an email at cascadeiceguide@gmail.com and I'll get it up as quickly as possible. There are instructions on the page of what information to include in submissions. Think cold thoughts and hopefully it'll be a good season!
  15. WA Ice Conditions 2020-21

    Toured around Snoqualmie on Saturday. Multiple parties gunning for NEB Chair, one party reported a successful climb later. The ice step seemed to be in pretty good condition actually. Source Lake Line, all the other stuff, not in. Made it out to the summit of Wright to scope the surprisingly impressive north summit of north Roosevelt (north^2 roosevelt). This area is often loaded, with 6-7 single pitch lines right next to each other and multipitch potential. Only really one of the single pitches looked good currently, but it's still very early in the season. Maybe someday I'll have the motivation to stop sliding down couloirs and climb some of these guys, but I've been by them a few times now and it's a pretty cool spot.
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