Jump to content
  • Announcements

    • olyclimber

      WELCOME TO THE CASCADECLIMBERS.COM FORUMS   02/03/18

      We have upgraded to new forum software as of late last year, and it makes everything here so much better!  It is now much easier to do pretty much anything, including write Trip Reports, sell gear, schedule climbing related events, and more. There is a new reputation system that allows for positive contributors to be recognized,  it is possible to tag content with identifiers, drag and drop in images, and it is much easier to embed multimedia content from Youtube, Vimeo, and more.  In all, the site is much more user friendly, bug free, and feature rich!   Whether you're a new user or a grizzled cascadeclimbers.com veteran, we think you'll love the new forums. Enjoy!
Sign in to follow this  
Highlander

Winter Alpine Climbs

Recommended Posts

I am sitting at work, thinking of the next Alpine suffer-fest. What are some of your favorite and most memorable winter alpine climbs?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had one on Sahale. We didn't see one person the whole weekend. We also didn't take snowshoes and it took us 7 hours to go from cascade pass to the summit. Postholed to our knee's the whole time. We made it back to our tent at dark and decided to take a short cut straght down the pass. We ened up veggy belaying on some steep nasty stuff for a couple of hours. Basically lost and tried to use a compass to navigate but the only bearing we could see was Jburg. We ended up being 20 feet from the picnic area.

 

I got a great picture of Jburg with the sunsetting behind it. One of my favorites.

J-burg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mine was getting buried hourly in a sierra designs "flash light" on Mt Baker when I was 15. Getting out every hour to dig it out sure was a chore. Now I have dicovered a wonderful invention called the "4 season tent".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Von S. I had a similar experience on Ranier with my wife in 1975. We went up toward Muir a storm came in so we dug in and waited out the storm. Lucky for us it was a nasty ass 24 hour storm. We were out there to test out our new mountain touring binding(silverette bear traps). After the storm it was clear and cold. Skiing was fantastic. I will never forget digging out of the wall of snow that filled in on us. Finally we had to dig snow into the tent to get out. It was a trying night with a great ending. [big Grin]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A great day trip is the north east face of the tooth... we found 1 foot of hoar frost on 65 degrees... God I was happy when I got to that tree... 165' runout. The ridge had m5 moves on it, just rime ice- Our eyebrows froze. [Eek!]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

some winter cascades climbing memories:

 

climbed franklin falls, above denny creek campground, during an arctic front in late december. only a small fraction of the falls was frozen, the rest was flowing at full blast, constantly misting us. when we stopped moving for half an hour at lunch time, we each had a solid frozen carapace. we could barely break free to move. awesome site, with an open pool just below the falls and the I-90 bridge 200 feet above you. frozen mist had coated all the trees and the walls of the cirque, making it look like that ice cave in Logan’s Run…

 

dragging sleds 14 miles up the ingalls creek trail to attempt some first winter ascents in the nightmare needles. sleds, as you may know, are more suited to open glaciers and icefields than to sidehilling trails in narrow cascades valleys. they were constantly falling off the trail behind us, sliding down the hill and dragging us down behind them like a Florida State defensive back sacking a quarterback. we climbed 1 pitch in six days.

 

soloed the ne buttress of chair peak on a crisp, clear day, terrifying myself on the snow covered slabs near the top. came back the next day with a partner and did the north face.

 

getting six feet of new snow in less than 48 hours on a ski trip north of white pass. we woke up in the night with the tent bowed down within two inches of our faces, barely able to move. finally, one person was able to worm out to dig the tent clear, while the other two of us tried to contain our claustrophobia, afraid that if we moved too much, the whole thing would just collapse. and it was a 4-season tent!

 

on a climb near washington pass right after the road opened, didn’t summit, but did my first dry tooling (including hooking, shaft camming and undercling-levering) and first tool placement into frozen moss, all within an hour. like most washington winter climbs, 90% of reliable pro was slings around trees.

 

late season attempt on new york gully found it out of shape (too warm), so we hiked up the enigma couloir instead. strong sun was at work on the other side. we started a sitting glissade that turned into a slow, wet avalanche. we were able to sit on top all the way down; it carried us without any further effort from the summit of snoqualmie mt. to within 50 yards of the car.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I second New York Gully. It is way cool and I cant wait to do it again, Hopefully with more Ice on it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Doing all three summits of Higgins was fun, scary on the second summit. Had to keep digging out the holds on the downsloping rock. We never could see anything except for a 10-second window down into the Darrington valley. [Razz]

 

Another good winter climb is Hadley Peak on Baker (great skiing back) really looooonnngg day, depending on snow level and road closure due to mountain goats.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've only done about 2 winter climbs besides waterfall ice that I can think of.... They were fun. Triple Coolers and the North Face of Castle Peak (Tatoosh Range).

 

Both were fun and totally different from each other. I'd climb them both again......

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mt. Constance: North Chute

The Brothers: South Peak

Mt. Shasta: Casaval Ridge

 

All three are superb winter alpine climbs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Guye peak has some fun ones: Did the south rib in "winter" conditions. In summer, it's a 2-3 hour class 3 scramble. When we tried it in winter, it was soft snow on top of running water on top of lots of downsloping slabbiness. Pick placements in mud and moss assisted progress. The best and only piece of pro on one memorable pitch (where we had to detour to do loose class 5th climbing to avoid climbing a running waterfall) was a one-inch thick bush/tree. It was intermittent snow/rain the whole way, with minimal visibility. I think it took 8 hours to reach the top. The clouds lifted while traversing the subsummits and we got to see a cool sunset. The moon came up just in time to guide us back down the East gully.

 

It was amazing how something so "easy" and so close to the road could be so challenging...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The west ridge of North Twin Sister is a popular winter climb (At least as popular as winter climbing gets around here). What makes for a beautiful scramble in summer can be quite exciting when plastered in snow. Furthermore, the approach in winter is no longer than it is in summer due to the always closed gate. Thats a rarity.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Northwest Face Couloir on Mt. Stuart is supposed to be some kind of old skool classic. Apparentley in the eighties this was a testpiece climb... Considered far more difficult than Triple Couloirs and the like.

 

Anybody done it in the last couple years?

 

Sorry about the weird triple post thing, my computer -- or maybe my mouse trigger finger -- doesn't seem to want to work right.

 

Jason

 

[ 11-14-2002, 03:50 PM: Message edited by: Jason Martin ]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any of the winter mixed stuff on Illumination Rock is certainly memorable stuff to do. For the serious mountaineer only. I am glad to announce that there are now 2 sources to see the topo of the S.E. face.

 

The Pro Mountain Sports now has copies of the Topos .

 

It shows 10 or so of the mixed winter lines currently ? In ? I have my best scouts there soon but Pineapple Express storms seem to help!!

 

I hope to be on it thanks giving day weekendto check it out. I think it could be great RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!! [rockband][Mad][Cool][big Grin][Wink][big Drink][smile]

 

[ 11-14-2002, 05:17 PM: Message edited by: wayne1112 ]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just going outside in winter is reward enough. The urge to hibernate is overwhelming. I need a warm bed and 6 month food supply though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There's some nice stuff up in the Pasayten in the Winter (i.e. Monument, Lago, Blackcap, and Osceola). It's a long drive, but well worth it for some quality winter climbs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Let's see, just mountains?

 

Vice President (BC) - very very cold, great ski

Gib Ledge on Rainier - very cold, blown off my feet only once.

Spearhead traverse - summited all but 2 pks en route. Skied one mtn before the heli skiers trashed it.

Sisters (OR) traverse - I would do it again in a minute.

The Tooth - in leather tele boots.

Matier and something (BC) - "Hero snow"

Hall Pk - navigational brilliance

Barring - very large spind-drift avalanche

Constance wins 3 - I get 0 successes

Hood - high wind broke the poles on my K-Mart tent.

Hood - Temperatures too cold to sleep.

Hood - hacked in a snowcave at the top of the lift w/ an ice axe.

Monashees (BC) Unlimited skiing - I'll be back!

St. Helens - Inexp'd snowboarder in party took a beautifull line - 15 degrees away from the descent route. We saw him the next morning.

Garabaldi and Dome (BC) - carried skis up the crusty headwall to the plateau, carried skis back down.

Castle and Pinnacle - a very different climb when you have to brush snow off all the holds.

Silver Pk - my first summit using skis (track skis!)

 

If you wanna ski Chinook to White Pass or Shuksan (Sulfide Gl.) nxt wk or wk-end e-mail me **jhamaker@operamail.com**

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this  

×