The Cascade Kid Posted May 28, 2009 Share Posted May 28, 2009 Trip: Mt. Hood - Leuthold's Couloir Date: 5/28/2009 Trip Report: My team of two left timberline on skis at 12:10am on Thursday morning. We climbed up along the cat track in somewhat slushy conditions that turned crusty by the time that we reached the top of the track. We angled northwest up to the standard SS route along the rock band and then traversed West to Illumination saddle. Once the saddle was attained, a brief powow quickly determined to abort the mission. The reasons are these: 1. While traversing over to the saddle, we experienced a very close call with a massive falling rock. About as large as a lunch tray and 4-5 inches thick, it hauled ass down the snowslope in the dark missing us by about 20'. I was only alerted to its approach a few seconds before by a low hiss. Looking at its path on the way back down, it was only touching ground every 20' or so. 2. Our choice of the couloir route depended on conditions being cemented, but there was little evidence that the mountain had frozen up appreciably overnight. 3. Looking west from the saddle towards Yokum ridge there was plenty of evidence of lots of rockfall and snowmelt. 4. In a post-hoc ratification of our decision, while waiting for the sun to rise, we heard Lots of rockfall on either side (3am-5am) We traversed back across to the main route once there was enough light to see rocks coming from above and dodge them, and then just opted to return to the car and head off to work. I would strongly advise against travel on this or any nearby routes, as objective hazards are very high, and looking at the weather, ought to remain so or worsen. Gear Notes: Used: Skis + Skins Unused: 2 pickets 1 axe each 30m rope Wear a helmet! Approach Notes: Standard cat-track approach. It may have been safer to reach the saddle by first traversing west and then climbing, rather than traversing higher above. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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