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clee03m

orbit walk off

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My partner and I did Outer Space and got lost on descent and bush wacked for 3 1/2 hours. I'm going back for Orbit this weekend. Any beta on descent?

 

Thanks,

 

Christine

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1) Don't drop down the first obvious gully, keep traversing at the top

 

2) Look for all the cairns

 

3) If you find yourself actually bushwacking, you've dropped too low.

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No rappels necessary. Does your partner have the initials NG? If so, sorry for your epic but hearing about it was hilarious.

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No. MW. Nothing hilrious about our little epic. I really hope I don't do that bush wack again. We left some blood on that non-trail (OK my partner did who was wearing shorts).

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i've never been able to do that walkoff in the dark and not have to rap once, where you're supposed to scramble back onto the face where it's exposed as hell

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Descend the gulley to where there is a ledge sytem to the left that goes through trees and brush. It is most of the way down but looking left it will look like you are still a long ways up. Continue a down and up descent leftward across boulders and the start gullies then down the narrow ledge to the base. Always moving left ward.

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What are you rapping off of?

somewhere just a little bit below where you're supposed to head off skiers left as bug says above - there's a big old tree w/ an established rap setup - from there i seem to recall you bear left and pick up a trail that still requires you to climb back up 100 feet or so to the base of the wall

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The best descent I did off Snow Crick was in the winter at night. The moon was bright enough and we were able to just plunge step down the chossy slabs. But I digress.

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My first time up there , the mountain goats showed me the way down. Honest! baa

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First time up there I just slept with the mountain goats.

 

Most people get it wrong. Sheep go "Baaaaaaaa"

But Mountain goats are very different. They say "Heeeeeeee."

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The gully is quite wide up top and if facing up hill it is towards the left. There should cairns all over the trail.

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I've done it twice. It didn't seem hard either time. The top seemed clear and straightforward. The bottom got more confusing but was never too bad. One time I rapped, and the other time I didn't. I think if you start bushwhacking you're doing it wrong and should back up and keep your eyes open.

 

Also, you can find cairns everywhere... they won't necessarily lead you down the rap-free descent. But if you get to a rap, you may as well do it.

Edited by counterfeitfake

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I am the said partner. Here is the trip report:

 

http://www.websterart.com/html/outer_space7-2009.html

 

and no, if the cam is yours, you can't have it. Finders keepers. We each found a cam. The problem with the descent is there are cairns everywhere you look. If you go the wrong way, there are cairns.

We did find a couple high traverses to skiers left, below what might have been orbit, but those gullies dead ended in space. We did find a big tree with two old 60 meter ropes tied around it, a fixed rappel. But the goats had been chewing the grapevine knot. We followed the streambed to the bottom of that rap anyway.

 

after wasting time trying two dead end high traverses, we committed to the streambed, which at least didn't have death drop offs.

 

I used to do that climb once a year back in the day, but my memory ain't so good 25 years on.

 

I think Christine is right, the best plan is to wait on top for someone who knows the way, and follow them.

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I seem to remember someone this past Spring (before the closure) posted something about a descent off the other side. It involved one or two raps and seemed to be a much nicer option. I did a few searches and couldn't come up with the info. But there was a thread about it a while back and I cannot find it...

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I also read about the alternative descent and used it in spring to get off Champagne. Worked well. But my route is far off to the climbers right compared with the Orbit summit. (btw, did Outer Space last Saturday, noone there - perhaps it was the 107F in 11worth that scared others away).

 

At the top of Champagne, you run the ridge crest over big blocks for less than a half rope length until you reach a rappel station hidden under a block. It is located just before a pair of skinny rock pinnacles along the ridge. Then do three single rope raps. The first rap finishes a little to the right and well short of a full length. After 3 raps, follow the line of least resistance down for about 1 minute to find the nearby faint boot path. Follow this down along the climbers right of SCW towards pearly gates and link up with the pearly gates trail back to the parking lot.

 

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My first time up there , the mountain goats showed me the way down. Honest! baa

 

I believe you. My first time up there was the same experience. Plus we had engaged in some substance abuse at the top that impaired our route finding ability and it was pretty obvious the goat was aware of that and took pity on us.

I never got a chance to thank that mountain goat.

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I know this sounds dumb, but where do those goats go when the snow is 6 feet deep up there?

 

Years ago (eighties) my friends Rick Powell and Will Greenough spent a month of weekends up on Orbit in January, fixed ropes, pitons and a few bolts, trying to nail the first winter ascent. Probably their bolts up there still. They didn't mention seeing goats.

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As you say, they are pretty territorial and stay warm in the winter with a double coat of wool - almost tame, and can climb 5.12.

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Or you can just rap Snow Creek Wall's chain anchors down Edge Of Space. Three double rope raps to 2 tree ledge, then a single to the ground. This is my preferred choice descent these days...

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