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MtnHigh

Kick Ass Lenticular on Hood

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Did anyone venture up Hood Sunday morning and run into the lenticular storm? The conditions above 8000' were about the worst I've ever been in.

 

We climbed to the the south edge of the Sandy Glacier via Illumination Saddle Saturday evening and found a shelted spot to bivvy. Our plans were to climb the Sandy Glacier HW the following morning.

 

About 2am the wind kicked up, keeping us awake the rest of the morning. The mountain above us looked like hell. We abandoned our plans and headed back to Illumination. Traversing from the Sandy Gl to Illunination was an adventure. Visability was zilch and the wind was knocking us over. Took us 3 hours to find our way back to Illumination. The abandoned snow cave we crawled into at the saddle was more welcome than any 5 star hotel room.

 

Below Illumination on the south side the weather was fine. It was a very localized system.

 

Did anyone else experience it?

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I was driving back from a training at Smith Rock on 26 N.B. and watched the lenticulars slowly descend over the sisters, Jefferson, and Hood, and thought: "I'm glad I'm not in the mountains right now." [smile] Sorry you were stormed off the Sandy HW. Hope you get a chance while it's still in good shape. I assumed you bivied low on Yocum, or did you make it onto the glacier first?

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I was coming down the gorge, returning from a trip to Spring Mtn. All I could see was the skirts of the volcanos, mere hints at what was hiding in the clouds. We had some awesome rain squalls somewhere around Cascade Locks. I'm surprised the South side of Hood was nice, nothing looked very appealing from down low...

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Hi Iain,

 

We bivvied low on the Yocum, around 7800', as you suggested in your email to me a couple of weeks ago. There's an excellent spot adjacent to a rock outcroping just below the wide saddle leading to the Sandy. The spot offers pretty good protection from the wind and elements. Regardless, we got our asses kicked by the weather.

 

Now and then it's a good thing to be reminded of who's the boss on the mountain and to come away from the experience unscathed but a smarter man.

 

Pete

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MntHigh,

 

We were on Hood Monday with very on and off weather. We took advantage of a prolong break in the weather and summited by an interesting route. We went up the zig zag to the steam vents, then ascended a steep heedwall to the upper Yokum, then traveresed to the summit. We bivied at Illumination Saddle. The weather was very on and off monday but Tuesday we had to descend in white out conditions. Luckily our compass bearing lead us directly to the lift without dificulty.

 

I am interested if anyone else climbed Hood by this route?

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Which side of castle crags were you on? Although I haven't gone up that way, it sounds an awful lot like the way we descended after doing the Sandy Headwall a couple years ago. We had left our tent at Illumination Saddle and were trying to find a more direct descent rather than going down the south side and traversing over.

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adr_901,

 

It sounds like you ascended just left of Crater Rock on the old standard route. The old standard route started there, ascends a short steep snow slope then angles right toward the summit. I climbed this route in February. Sounds like you ascended straight up after passing Crater, directly to the upper West Crater Rim. The traverse you did was along the W Crater Rim. You were no were near Yocum R. It ends at about 10,400' on the other side of Leuthold Coulior.

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MtnHigh,

 

i remember the wind you must have experienced early sunday am while sleeping in the car - must have been hell because it was keeping me up. we headed up sunday am with intentions of climbing the reid glacier hw. we were optimistic on our way up, but decided to turn around at illumination saddle. wind was strong and visibility was terrible. the could level seemed to rise as the morning went on, but i'm glad we descended. good to hear you made it out all right. did you get a look at the sandy? we are thinking of doing it this weekend would welcome any input. cheers.

 

matt

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Matt,

 

Not even a tantlizing glimse of the HW exposed itself the Sat evening or Sun morning we were below it.

 

I can tell you something about the surface snow conditions however. Unless the temps drop dramatically in the next few days be prepared for some slogging on Reid and lower Sandy. There was 6-18" of old unconsolidate snow with a light crust on top. It was the shit traversing from Illumination to the Sandy.

 

The upper reaches of the Palmer/ZigZag to Illumination surface conditions are OK. The snow has been wind blown off.

 

Good luck

Pete

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