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catbirdseat

Stuart, West Ridge beta

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snow all the way up the couloir to LJT, with some little streams from melt providing running water. at LJT no running water, but accessible snow. at least one more possible source of snowmelt b/w LJT & west ridge notch (depending on your route), and lots of snow in the gullies. on descent, we saw no running water in cascadian couloir (but LOTS of snow). this was this last weekend.

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We are planning to climb Stuart by the Ulrich Couloir and descend by the Cascadian. How low does the snow extend? We want to know whether we have waited too long into the summer and the couloirs have become long scree climbs, or whether they are still mostly (more pleasurable) snow climbs.

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guess that depends on how you define pleasure. in my book they were hot dusty slogs with a little snow on the side. but then again, everyone sees things differently in the mountains...

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Make sure you get yourself in the right coulior on the way down. Cascadian is by far the easiest in my book. It has something faintly resembling a trail which you can follow and doesn't have any brush at the bottom. It still sucks, but it's easy and quick. I've stumbled into ulrichs or something other crap in the twilight before and got to contend with a few easy cliffouts, some forest and brush. It was definitely more suck than cascadian.

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2 questions:

1: How do you make sure you get into the correct (Cascadian) coulior for the descent?

2: Are there any bivy spots on the west ridge route? I heard there were some bivy spots around Long John Tower. Can anyone confirm? It would just be me and my partner so 2 small spots is all we need. (and since I know someone will say why don't you just do it in one day with a lighter pack; the answer is I want to bivy on route or at the summit because I've never done that before, I think it would be a fun experience, and it will be good practice for future climbs, climbing with the heavier pack and all)

 

One extra question; I take it crampons and an axe are still appropriate for the descent (yeah, yeah, "I'm sure someone could descend with out either with no problems")

 

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there are more bivy spots along the wr than you can shake a stick at. it's a freaking mochu pichu all along the route (and off) because so many people get lost take long and do an unplanned bivy. it would be a nice area to spend the night but i don't think you'll find much for water.

 

 

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To get on the Cascadian for descent-

There were cairns (2 weeks ago) marking the whole thing out for you. Scramble off the east side of the summit- go back up, to the base of the false summit, then descend. Again, the whole thing should be clearly marked. I brought a photocopy of the the page from the brown Becky book, showing the entire south side of the mountain- this should be helpful.

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Fleb said to summit, then go to the false summit, then go down. It is simple my friend.

Don't be tempted to drop down before going over the false summit. wave.gif

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vegetablebelay said:

It is simple my friend.

 

Thanks, apparently it wasn't simple enough for my simple mind cantfocus.gif

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leejams said:

Leave the poons,axe at home and bring an extra water bottle.

 

I'm leaning towards leaving the poons, but the axe is like my security blanket rolleyes.gif. Is there much snow in the cascadian right now? I would really like to leave the axe.

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Are you bringing a rope?

 

If so, walk over to the rib beneath the East peak. If you see no snow, you're golden. That means no snow. If you do see snow, just scramble down the rib a hundred feet or so and pop back over below the snowfield. Of course, at that point you will be cliffed out above a big slab. But since you have a rope, you can rap it (or downclimb it, it's pretty cool). There's a couple stations there already. You probably might wanna also bring some bail webbing.

 

And bring two extra water bottles.

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Yes, we are bringing a rope, I am a newbie Geek_em8.gif

 

With the weather looking the way it is currently, I don't think I'll need to take any water with me, I can just hold out my water bottle. cry.gif

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catbirdseat said:

Has anyone been up there lately? Are there snow patches for water still up there. Going this weekend.

 

Hmmmm.....................

That's why you left a message on my voicemail.

Sorry Catbirdseat, I left Thursday night to bag Maude.

Should have called me sooner. I have a excellent sketch of the route but I normally try not to make things to easy for you. Hope you got your beta. wave.gif

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Descended CC yesterday. No axe needed.

 

Hey got a question for the Cascadian Coulior regulars........

About a third of the way down the coulior, just as the trail begins to hit the scrubby trees, it sorta cliffs out. I've been dogging left and dropping down into a loose, short narrow gully which dumps out low and puts you right onto a trail (obscure, overgrown) which takes you to the Ingall's creek trail. Is this the best way down? BTW, how many of you have gotten spanked on the Gendarme? cry.gif

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bcollins said:

BTW, how many of you have gotten spanked on the Gendarme? cry.gif

 

Damn, there was no mention of spankings - maybe I climb with the wrong partners.

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Climbed the West Ridge of Stuart on Sat/Sun (8/30-31). Bivied Sat night just above West Ridge Notch at ~8700 ft at great bivy spot. First time biving 'on route', very cool. thumbs_up.gif

 

Some quick route beta:

Took second gully from Stuart Pass approach. Left at first fork, right at second fork to the top of gully. At top of that gully look across next gully and see Long John Tower. Head down into gully and up to the left of LJT. Getting up past LJT was most exposed/difficult scrambling (4th, possibly low 5th, class). Once Past LJT head up and over several more gullies to near ridge crest then over/down to WRN. Scramble up to a ledge (we bivied here). Up to this point we felt comfortable with out ropes but Sunday we roped up and climbed onto the north side from the ledge, half a pitch back to ridge crest. I think you could probably scramble the south side back up to this point though. Then up another half pitch on south side. Drop down ~20 feet to another ledge traverse ledge over to a couple of easy chimneys. (we didn't traverse far enough and took a wrong chimney/gully, leader took a couple small falls here. Came back down and got back on route). Climb up 3 pitches to summit via path of least resistance. 10 hours TH to bivy, 11.5 hours bivy, summit, to TH.

 

A few additional comments: A few hard moves felt like more than 5.4?? I didn't lead any of 4-5 pitches because I didn't know where the route went or what variation of the route we were on was rated. (my partner going up the wrong gully and falling didn't instill any confidence in me Geek_em8.gif). That is a long route, wow. There are lots of bivy spots all over. No snow until small patch at top of Cascadian. Carried 4 liters a piece, which was just enough (but heavy). 10.5 x 60 m rope is too heavy, need light alpine rope. Brought rock shoes but didn't ever wear them. Boots work fine. And finally the Cascadian Couloir was fine for descending but I can't figure out why so many people go up that thing this time of year??? I am baffled, that thing sucks. Summit was crowded. On Saturday we passed a guy coming down the WR route after soloing it. Cool.

 

Long(ish) fun route.

 

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Dustin_B said:

Climbed the West Ridge of Stuart on Sat/Sun (8/30-31). Bivied Sat night just above West Ridge Notch at ~8700 ft at great bivy spot. First time biving 'on route', very cool. thumbs_up.gif

 

Some quick route beta:

Took second gully from Stuart Pass approach. Left at first fork, right at second fork to the top of gully. At top of that gully look across next gully and see Long John Tower. Head down into gully and up to the left of LJT. Getting up past LJT was most exposed/difficult scrambling (4th, possibly low 5th, class). Once Past LJT head up and over several more gullies to near ridge crest then over/down to WRN. Scramble up to a ledge (we bivied here). Up to this point we felt comfortable with out ropes but Sunday we roped up and climbed onto the north side from the ledge, half a pitch back to ridge crest. I think you could probably scramble the south side back up to this point though. Then up another half pitch on south side. Drop down ~20 feet to another ledge traverse ledge over to a couple of easy chimneys. (we didn't traverse far enough and took a wrong chimney/gully, leader took a couple small falls here. Came back down and got back on route). Climb up 3 pitches to summit via path of least resistance. 10 hours TH to bivy, 11.5 hours bivy, summit, to TH.

 

A few additional comments: A few hard moves felt like more than 5.4?? I didn't lead any of 4-5 pitches because I didn't know where the route went or what variation of the route we were on was rated. (my partner going up the wrong gully and falling didn't instill any confidence in me Geek_em8.gif). That is a long route, wow. There are lots of bivy spots all over. No snow until small patch at top of Cascadian. Carried 4 liters a piece, which was just enough (but heavy). 10.5 x 60 m rope is too heavy, need light alpine rope. Brought rock shoes but didn't ever wear them. Boots work fine. And finally the Cascadian Couloir was fine for descending but I can't figure out why so many people go up that thing this time of year??? I am baffled, that thing sucks. Summit was crowded. On Saturday we passed a guy coming down the WR route after soloing it. Cool.

 

Long(ish) fun route.

 

West Ridge is a scramble in boots.

 

Catbird, you still want that sketch?

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