Jump to content
  • Announcements

    • olyclimber

      WELCOME TO THE CASCADECLIMBERS.COM FORUMS   02/03/18

      We have upgraded to new forum software as of late last year, and it makes everything here so much better!  It is now much easier to do pretty much anything, including write Trip Reports, sell gear, schedule climbing related events, and more. There is a new reputation system that allows for positive contributors to be recognized,  it is possible to tag content with identifiers, drag and drop in images, and it is much easier to embed multimedia content from Youtube, Vimeo, and more.  In all, the site is much more user friendly, bug free, and feature rich!   Whether you're a new user or a grizzled cascadeclimbers.com veteran, we think you'll love the new forums. Enjoy!
Sign in to follow this  
G-spotter

Slesse Pocket Glacier serac - already active

Recommended Posts

It actually doesn't look too bad in that latest photo to sprint across the pocket glacier above the serac to reach the bypass. Most of the activity is below the level you'd traverse.

 

Of course, if the whole thing slid out with you standing on it, you'd be doubleplusungood.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

slesse.png

 

Is my understanding of what is the pocket glacier and what is the approach correct?

 

Does one need crampons/ice axe to cross the snow bellow usually? I want to attempt the route on the weekend of 5th of August...climbed a lot of routes all over US, but will be my first time in this area..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's a shitty approach. Notice how it goes right under the active serac? If you try that in real life, you will end up dead.

 

Head all the way up to the Propellor and cross thru the "notch" at the level of the pocket glacier.

 

You WILL need crampons and an axe. No way you're getting to the base without them this year. Best advise is bring aluminum strap-ons and a short north wall hammer type axe that you can also pound pins with

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Here's the BEST way to go, also the quickest

 

That does indeed look fast.

 

But assuming for a second that one doesn't want to take the Pocket Glacier Direttissima there, I had a question about the bypass route vs the direct start. I feel like I've read that you can avoid the pocket glacier hazard via the direct start, but that I've also read that you don't actually avoid it (but you could consider the hazard mitigated?).

 

Exhibit A:

http://cascadeclimbers.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/1073228/Re_Slesse_NEB_avoiding_pocket_#Post1073228

 

So I'm curious: which is it?

 

Also, since it's been a few days since anyone asked, I might as well ask if anyone knows what the conditions are like there now..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You don't walk across the pocket glacier when doing the direct start, but you do pretty much pass under it and/or under the north slesse gl. while approaching the direct start, so you are exposed to icefall on the approach.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Taking the line in yellow that Don drew one will avoid the Pocket Glacier. The flip slide is that you are under the path of the North Glacier which will also come tumbling down from time to time. But it does not flush like the Pocket Glacier nor has the volume of water. Also one is protected when right up again the cliff band.

 

Finally, the patch of snow below the toe is not too steep and if done in the afternoon can be soft enough to cross without and ax or crampons (we did it without). I should note that if you wander too far left on the snow will put you back under the Pocket Glacier. Basically you want to pop up from the rock traverse just a bit to get out of the N. Glacier fall line and head up to base of the slabs and figure out the direct.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Here's the BEST way to go, also the quickest

 

364059_copy.jpg

 

Looks like a bad ass way to go (to hell?), but we are going light and fast, do not want to carry the 2nd tool. ; _)

 

My other option is to maybe climb Stuart, than go to Bugs and after that attempt Slesse on our way back to CA around Aug 15th or so. You guys think it is a better way to do things? But I heard approach to Stuart is confusing...

 

N rib looks good. I saw Colin Haley's TR on it a while ago. But I have been dreaming about doing the Beckey route, due to it's history partly. Plus I suck on slab. Heard it has plenty of runout 5.8 slab?

 

PS: people usually approach the bypass route across that huge broken up glacier (unless it slides)? Looks terrible. I guess you do not rope up for it but try to sprint across as fast as you can if you see the route? Sorry for all the questions, the area is really new. You can email and ask me anything about Sierra in return. : )

Edited by Vitaliy M.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you look at the pics from Skyler, there was a WA party climbing the butt at the same time they were on the north rib, so obviously someone managed to get on it.

 

Sprint across or rope up, either way has its disadvantages.

 

Personally I think if you hit Stuart and then the Bugs, Slesse glacier will either have slid or will seem not so big by the time you try it in late August.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's the GPS track from the route we took last Friday, overlaid on a Google Earth image:

 

Screen_Shot_2012-08-02_at_9_37_49_AM.png

 

We (accidentally) took a really roundabout way to the toe of the buttress, but the upshot was that we were never exposed to the pocket glacier and only had a short exposure to the north side glacier while crossing over to the start of the route.

 

Of course our approach added a few hours and the north side glacier released some blocks across our route about 20 minutes after we crossed. Still, given the choice, coming in from the side was definitely safer than messing with the pocket glacier. But you can do that without all the extra uphill/bushwhacking/traversing that we did..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Here's some photos from Skyler's recent (last week) ascent of the North Rib that show conditions well.

 

Vitaly you might want to consider N Rib over NE butt as your preferred route right now.

 

http://www.flickr.com/photos/skylerd/sets/72157630841892074/with/7685647256/

 

Here's the blog post to go along with that

http://runoutoffroute.wordpress.com/2012/08/02/a-birthday-spanking-the-north-rib-of-mount-slesse/

 

Disclaimer: Skyler didn't send this to me. Christian C. did. I include it here b/c I think it's a great writeup.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Word is it was spitting big scary chunks all day last weekend, especially at 7 AM when the sun first hits it. North Slesse Glacier (on the right) has shrunk considerably and you can reportedly run over to the buttress direct start from the Crossover pass trail and only be below the NSG for about 5 to 10 minutes and only on snow for 5 minutes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you've been watching this route for a few years, you'll know that there is often only a narrow window, if any at all, between the Pocket Glacier sliding off the slabs and the time when rain/snow start falling. We're in that window now and the forecast looks great. On the flip side, the North Slesse Glacier is broken and active.

 

Go get some!

 

I'll write a TR at some point.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Those glaciers are amazing for the variability they exhibit year over year. When I climbed North Rib in 2004? the North Slesse Glacier was hardly more than a snowfield.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this  

×