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kadyakerbob

big four

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has anyone been up to big four recently? gonna head up there thur to climb, thinking the conditions should be ok, snow should be consolidated? anyone else thinking about climbing later this week up there?

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Im not sure its cold enough. I would expect rock covered in a whole shit load of snow, but I might be wrong. What we really need is a nice warm rain and a solid freeze and then it might be pretty good. Let us know what it looks like.

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fifty fifty on weather i am gonna head up there. thinking i will do chair peak on thur and see how the snow is there and if its good then i probably will head up and do two routes on big four, fri and sat. wish us luck!!!!!

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good idea just doing chair and two routes on big four, just in case the weather doesn't cooperate

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It is only about 30 minutes hike from the Deer Creek gate to the Big Four picnic ground, so if the road is gated as the USFS says, it is no big deal.

 

On Big Four, you can have some fun in gullies off to the left of the main face (the Tower Route or some variation thereof), as well as several variations to the N. Face. Also, Hall Peak, to the right, offers more.

 

For full - frontal climbs, it might be in less than stellar condition right now, but I bet you can amuse yourself just fine.

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Yeah, Big Four is the kind of peak that easily allows two winter routes in a weekend. With a lot of Red Bull I suppose.

 

=;-)

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If you do climb the NORTH Face, make sure you decend the NORTH side of the mountain. Do not descend to the SOUTH. Do not march SOUTH, mile after mile, into the middle of nowhere.

 

If you do decide to descend SOUTH, though, you may get free hamburgers, if you are able to get back to your car.

 

Remember: NORTH

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Big fuss out at Big Four today. S&R folks, sheriff, and a chopper buzzing all over the north face.

 

We asked and were told that a party was overdue by 24 hours on the NF. Apparently the chopper made contact with them; they're fine.

 

But I have to wonder whether this was the same party that was going to do two lines in two days?

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no it wasn't. it was my roommate, MtnHigh (pete), and BillA. The underestimated their "start to worry and make phone calls" to their family. I tried to call and stop a rescue until tomorrow morning. They left PDX friday night at 11pm and had the call the troops time for noon today, which i think was a bit (way too) early. Folks need a 24 fuck it up window. Whatever, sounds like they had a good time.

Ironic, concidering this exact same thing happened to me, folks jumped the gun waaay too early (call the night of same day I started up!)

 

If someone needs a rescue, they can wait a day. if they can't wait a day, then they're dead anyways. I'm glad they're ok, cuz I left a short message on Pete's phone after his family called me, "Pete, it's Mike. Can I have your stuff?" I would have felt bad if Pete was dead. Plus he doesn't have anything I want 'cept his Quarks, which were on him.

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If someone needs a rescue, they can wait a day. if they can't wait a day, then they're dead anyways.

 

Bull and shit. As a climber you well know mountain weather can change quickly. There is a difference surviving an extra 24 hours in the summer and during a blizzard.

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If someone needs a rescue, they can wait a day. if they can't wait a day, then they're dead anyways.

 

Bull and shit. As a climber you well know mountain weather can change quickly. There is a difference surviving an extra 24 hours in the summer and during a blizzard.

 

This all depends on the peak. The history of Big Four is full of forced bivys. The bigger the peak, the longer the window is before you should call out the rescue.

 

On Chair Peak, I might wait 12 hours and feel like there's probably something wrong, but on Big Four or on J-Berg or other peaks of that type...climbers attempting those mountains in winter conditions should be able to deal with a blizzard and if they can't, then they shouldn't be up there.

 

Based on the banter here, most people don't know how big Big Four really is. If you look at the notes in the Washington Ice Guide, you'll see that a large percentage of those on first ascents on the mountain were forced to bivy. I think that anyone attempting a route of such size in a day should get at least a 24 hour window before calling out the troops.

 

Jason

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I was up there yesterday also, couldn't believe how many SAR folks turned up. I wondered what they were all going to do, even in the event of a rescue. I doubt if many would be able to climb up to help in any event. Here is a very high res. shot of the face yesterday - looked to be in prime condition.

 

I would like to hear a full report on the climb, and rescue effort, glad all is well.

 

Here is a high resolution shot I got of the face yesterday. Big 4 2/19/06

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Thats a nice picture. I'd say conditions on Big Four right now are only OK, certainly worse than I expected given the snow pack and temps; they werent inspiring enough for us to summit from the Central Rib. The first 3000 ft was super cake with frosting, then the snow turned to complete ass. The party on Spindrift was moving very very slowly, I didn't envy their postition, and we didnt think they would top out by dark at their slow rate of climb.

Edited by Alex

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Nice pic, climbaround.

 

In the picture you link (2/19) you can see two black dots one above the other in the middle of the upper part of the far right couloir. They look like two climbers stretched out on a rope length:

3936Big4-lrg-med.jpg

I think they may be climbers because in this other wider-angle picture of yours from two days before (2/17) you can not see those two dots:

3936Big4-2_17-med.jpg

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