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Alex_Mineev

[TR] Hood - Cooper Spur 2/20/2010

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12.10am wake up, coffee

3.00am redbull, pack on, hike off

3.05 damn ice on the trail

4.00 hoar frost sparkles brighter than stars above, feels like in fairy tale, beautiful night!

5.30 Tilly Jane Cabin - barking dogs inside, altimeter is wrong 300ft

6.10 coming out of woods, first taste of winds

6.40 first light, windy freezing, reached the rock shelter, all clothes on

7.00 sunrise, beautiful mountain, going goes well, a bit less wind

8.00 sun on, high winds on the upper mountain

8.30 calibrate altimiter at 8500ft

9.00 short rest, breakfast and crampons/harnesses on at about 9000

9.30 exposure to Elliot, not so steep, not so windy yet, just pressing up

10.00 10000ft, ropeup, start simulclimbing

10.30 slow progress because of simulclimbing, excellent climbing on steep snow, windy!

10.50 got into cadence, sorted out technical issues, but now getting tired, altemiter shows 10500, I suspect its wrong again

11.00 windy and freezing, a bit tired but still moving good

11.20 got used to slopes and it's cold, peeling ice off eyelids, decided to keep only one piece of pro at a time, this speeds up the progress

11.50 last slope before the summit, blowing like hell, hypothermic, altimeter is again off 300ft - SUUNTO you made a piece of crap!

12.00 summit - step over the edge off the route - from hell to heaven - no wind and warm on the other side!

12.10 I think I saw 20 or so climbers following us on cooper - Oleg doesn't see any, I am clearly tripping. Gatorade is below 32 but still liquid, painful to drink. I am shivering even though it is warm.

12.35 Ok, bailing from Sunshine descent - too windy, let's go south side.

13.00 where the fuck is perly gates?

13.30 where is the main summit, PG should be right under it. Everything looks steep and all the tracks are going up. Where are all the people who supposed to climb from south? I see three climbers but Oleg says these are just rocks.

14.00 looked at all the options - all tracks are going up. only one option seems to have more tracks than the rest, we ruled it out because it seemed exposed to falling rime ice. I see climbing monkey - I see it's moving up on steep ice few hundred yards away. Too embarrassed to tell Oleg about it - I know it's in my head.

14.30 Oleg suggests we have to get out of here, I belay him on the option with lots of tracks and rime ice - see if there is a way out.

15.00 the option goes easy, unrope

15.30 we are off the steep part and coming to the devils kitchen

4.00 rest at the devils kitchen, trying to call Mara to "rescue" us off the timberline lodge (our car is on the north side)

4.30 on the traverse of Steel Cliffs - cellphone picks up we make calls.

5.30 sunset, beautiful

5.40 hurricane resumes at the top of the lift

6.30 still going down, freezing cold, 45mph gusts, I see red flashes and sparkles in my left eye (wind is blowing from my left)

6.40 my toes feel like someone fries them with a lighter

6.50 loosing it because of painful toes, take off crampons, Oleg is walking ahead choosing the path, I can't keep up with him, I slip on ice and fall every three minutes, still better without crampons because toes don't hurt that much

7.00 reached the lodge, standing outside waiting for Oleg to take off crampons, people sitting behind the window, drinking booze and eating steaming hot food. Oleg can't take off his crampons - lashes are frozen. All doors on our side are closed - we can't get inside. FF...

7.05 descending to the visitor center, I have hard time keeping upright on the frozen trenches. The final piece is 30ft down to the road over the snow bank just above the cars.

7.10pm It's over! :) sitting on the bench in the climbers' corner, waiting for pick up. Life is so goood! :))

 

First light of the day

4381396746_129eb8030e.jpg

 

Sunrise on lower Cooper Spur

4380641553_fc8e94ffeb.jpg

 

8500ft

4381398362_2449b5f374.jpg

 

Breakfast

4380643029_0ccb745f6f.jpg

 

Winds on the upper mountain

4381399288_76580b4242.jpg

 

Oleg, midway up the Cooper Spur route

4381400012_b8d8048efb.jpg

 

Me just below the steep part on cooper Spur

4380644283_44dbdc784c.jpg

 

Cooper Spur at its best

4381401166_c66828a968.jpg

 

Midway in a wind-protected spot

[video:youtube]

 

Redface

4380645999_be5b81166e.jpg

 

100ft below the summit

4381402814_0bd13c89f1.jpg

 

Looking down the Cooper Spur route from the summit

4381403456_e3e077f767.jpg

 

Rime ice

4380648805_5238669316.jpg

 

Iron man, Steel Cliffs

4380649547_d8857af252.jpg

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Life is so goood! :))

 

Life is good indeed, Sasha and Oleg!

 

I just got the Oleg's e-mail "the climb was awesome - we were almost blown off the mountain by the 45 mph wind gusts and had to descend via the dog route"

 

:tup::tup::tup:

 

 

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We were up that way on Saturday. My buddy looked when we got back and said 19 degrees, with average wind of 31mph, gusts to mid 40s. When he looked at me, told me the windward side of my nose was white, and reassured me when I squeezed it a few times that some blood was flowing, we decided that the beer in the car was a better idea!

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No grass this time. Very odd trip:

 

1) Parking lot at the trailhead was FULL of dozens of closely packed cars. Yet, we have only met 2 persons sleeping in the TJ cabin, and two cranky dogs (they gotten mellow within seconds).

 

2) We somehow lost 3-4 hours of time and different people registered different time of events. We summitted around 3pm, not noon. Am I out of my mind?

 

3) Pearly gates looked like 1C variation - WI3, at least. The summit was completely calm – the wind was blowing from the direction of Black spider.

 

4) We saw people down below.

cooper_spur_old.jpg

 

 

5) The weirdest thing was the wind generated by a strange white cloud. It tried to kill us on the way down, for sure, and was gone by the time we got down.

I am pretty sure, fucking aliens were having a party at the Black Spider, playing with their antigravity engines and time-worm generators. I love mountains. The only negative is we have to go back “home”, haven’t we?...

 

 

 

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Wow, you are right, we summited about 2.30pm (I checked timestamps on photos). Odd indeed :) I somehow lost 3 hours near the summit. I suspect my body might be producing tetrahydrocannabinol above 10k

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4) We saw people down below.

cooper_spur_old.jpg

 

 

5) The weirdest thing was the wind generated by a strange white cloud. It tried to kill us on the way down, for sure, and was gone by the time we got down.

I am pretty sure, fucking aliens were having a party at the Black Spider, playing with their antigravity engines and time-worm generators.

 

So, Oleg, seeing people down below, hypothermia and weird clouds that are trying to kill you are all part of the package in your "training" regimen?

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We were up that way on Saturday. When he looked at me, told me the windward side of my nose was white, and reassured me when I squeezed it a few times that some blood was flowing, we decided that the beer in the car was a better idea!

 

Jon, how come your nose was bleeding if it was frozen?

Were you seeing things too while on the CS?

I hope the beer in the car was real :)

 

I need to get up the CS and check it out.

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Cool pictures! Sounds like your SUUNTO can't tell the correct time or elevation.

 

How steep does the Cooper Spur route get? What are the snow conditions like on the steep stuff?

 

Thanks for the great TR.

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On average upper part is 40-45 degrees. There are couple steps of 50. There were few options, I guess one could make it spicier or keep it well under 50 if wanted. Later in the season, when snow consolidates, it might get few more steep steps.

Snow was between perfect styrofoam at times to knee deep.

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Well, I'm glad I decided not to solo Copper Spur...I may have reached out to shake the hand of a monkey and been pulled into the spider's cloud.

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the spur's a fine solo joe, especially if'n you can get a ride back'roudn the mtn from t-line! :)

 

i really like the solo trip of climbing the sunshine then descending the spur

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OOO! Looks like there is some ice on the Cooper Spur.

Edited by wayne1112

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This is a REAL Cooper Spur route more than 100 years ago.

cooper_spur_old.jpg

Edited by OlegV

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Nice! That route is a freaking death march for sure. One time is enough for this life...

We went no ropes on our trip last year and I definitely said a few "please don't let me die buddah" in my head. We have bluebird and no wind, I can't imagine dealing with strong winds and cold on top of it all.

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ya'll can bring a tent and spend the night! :)

 

dig out the primitive shelter above tline, just below the spur proper, and all you need is a bivy sack n' bag (you can thus carry the tent weight as booze instead) :)

 

also an option, throwing a tent up at the end of the approach spur, about 9200 provides a real big-mountain ambiance and makes your summit climb the next day take about 2 hrs total

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the spur's a fine solo joe, especially if'n you can get a ride back'roudn the mtn from t-line! :)

 

i really like the solo trip of climbing the sunshine then descending the spur

 

I want to ski the Spur and I will soon. So the descent would not be slow...I've been to Tie in Rock twice on not so good days.

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Wow, skiing from the summit down the Spur would be ballsy. Anyone know of this being done? I'm sure some nutjobs have pulled it off, but wow, one slip and you're a permanent Elliot Glacier red spot.

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