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Alex

2012 / 13 Washington Ice Conditions

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Is it hopeful thinking to think something might be in out in leavenworth or vantage.

what do u guys think is the best bet for ice later thid week?

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I skinned up at Snoqualmie yesterday. Chockstone falls seemed in from the trail (see the photos below).

Also some of the routes around Source lake seemed formed up, but the avalanche danger is quite high for those now.

 

I'll probably go and give it a try to Chockstone on Saturday, I'll keep you posted 😃.

 

IMG_20121224_114919.jpgIMG_20121224_114342.jpgIMG_20121224_114340.jpgIMG_20121224_114917.jpg

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Was skiing up at Alpental yesterday. The line within bounds of the ski area, off Armstrong Express, is in but thin, might be fun to scratch around on. If you are interested, please only climb there when the Alpental area is closed for skiing (eg, skin up to the base with skis, and then climb). In years past the patrol has kicked people out during business hours.

 

IMG_2171_1_.JPG

 

The lower Alpental valley climbs, eg Alpental Falls, Alpental 2, 3, and 4 were not in.

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Haireball's Icicle & Tumwater Canyons Ass Clammin' Report; 12/26: still way too warm for most flows - we need a strong melt/freeze cycle. Best News: the PENCIL appears to be FAT! Examination through binoculars from Highway #2 (open again!) suggests it may be worth the walk. However, that same examination shows ZERO AVALANCHE ACTIVITY, which, with all the recent snow, suggests a certain reserve....

 

The Funnel, perennially "first in - last out" in Icicle Canyon has ice, but is also choked with snow, and shows no evidence of avalanche activity yet, so hold off...

 

Some intriguing looking mixed lines through the Candlestein Cliffs (between Rainbow Gully & Careno Crag) might ease the suffering of the truly desperate.

 

Patrick Hennessy and I wallowed and scratched our way up the Central Gully on Icicle Butt-rest last week, thinking the heavy snow load might at least offer entertaining step kicking, but no such luck. The snow might have made teriffic skiing (10% or drier!), but it certainly didn't support steps, and was underlain by dry rock. Many times we found ourselves grinding helplessly down some slab on picks and points, finally stopping in the next substantial snow patch. We did, however, complete the honestly adventurous four pitches to the top of the Butt-rest...

 

Something new and different: hints of ice on Goat Dome that, with a good melt/freeze cycle, might fatten into something climbable -- worth monitoring.

 

-Haireball

 

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Up at snoqualmies chock stone today. ice at the bottom peeling off under weight. huge chunks. not safe. after the first 10 ft ice step, which is much smaller now, there is steep snow. there was no ice for screaws on snow slope. not enough snow for a picket and half the time punching through to running water.

I quickly found some small trees and rapped off.

not ready for climbing yet. to much running water.

someone could try skip the first pitch by hiking further around to the left and then traversing over. maybe just an idea.

good luck finding ice

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http://www.everytrail.com/guide/herman-saddle-ski-tour

 

There is a little bit of top ropeable or even climbable ice on mount baker. On the way to Herman saddle along the creak bed there is a bit of ice on the right hand side. Last year I managed to get above it and set up a top rope. It is climbable on lead I think if one can get sticks as when get above the ice. It is a short single pitch of about 20ft max of ice, a couple of lines possible. As I remember it is before the very first lake on map , in the creek bed narrow gulley. I may go there again this year.

 

Dan

Edited by DanO

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Here are some pictures from Strobach yesterday. It looks like things have been building since Colin and Bryan were in there but not enough. At the current pace it looks like we could be several more weeks from good climbing as there is still rock showing underneath the ice, very little ice formed on the slabs above pillars and mostly nonexistent top-outs. We saw one or two sets of recent tracks in the area. Obviously somebody didn't want the karma and will probably be reincarnated again as a PNW ice climber, which is presumably the least desirable station.

 

Observations:

Maybe: SCB, SCP, Ice Dreams, Bleeder, FOR

Forming: Unholy, Dropline, Unnamed A, Ponderosa

 

dropline.JPG

SCB->Dropline

unholy.JPG

Unholy

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Haireball's Ass Clammin update - Pencil fell down yesterday or day before --- which leaves pretty much no ice around der worth.. temps too warm for flows here or in the basin... pray for cold!

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Nice updates. I'm bummed about Der Worth, usually around this time of year at least you can count on something to scratch around on over there. The snow sure has been epic this year so far but the ice, meh.

 

In one of the earlier Strobach pics that was posted, there was a shot of Primus Sucks - which *typically* is the left-most route of the entire area. However, in that shot there was an obvious thing forming to it's immediate left. If by some weird twist of fate that thing actually stays around and gets climbable (which it should, as it gets no sun until late Feb), it would be one of the few remaining FAs at Strobach.

 

This one:

http://www.cascadeclimbers.com/plab/data/500/medium/20121215-PC150211.JPG

 

Another thought: It seems the "hydrology" has moved favorably climbers left this year: Unholy Baptism in rare shape already and some heretofor unformed things coming, with other stuff only half good.

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went for a quick jaunt up to dragontail to have a go at triple couloirs. the snow is great for skiing, not so much for climbing. we wallowed for a bit then decided our time was better wasted skiing. but theres lots of ice up around colchuck, a few pitches at least for whoevers desperate

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John A and I went up to Strobach on Monday and climbed Primus Sucks and Ice Dreams. I agree with Farrgo... unholy baptism, bleeder, and tower of power need a week or two to touch down solidly. Dropline needs time to fill in, right now it looks like really technical vertical icicles. Ponderosa looks doable but dang thin at the top.

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OK, Who was climbing on Source Lake Line today? Could hear you but couldn't see you due to the cloud cover. TR please.

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Multiple multi-pitch lines (I don't think the ones from the guidebook) look good across from Alpental today. Also, NYG and PE are looking icy. There is easy snow travel with floats to the climbs as well.

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Hey DRep, That was me and Rob S on the source lake line today. I left my camera with photos in Robs car so no photos till tommorow. It's in but it's thinner than I've ever seen it, and this is the 5th or 6th time I've climbed it. Kind of seems like WI 4 but thin, hollow, and poor protection... I'm calling it a 4++ right now ;) ...pretty spicy. And it's absolutely dry, no water dripping at all, so it's condition isn't going to change till we get some serious melt freeze cycles.

Edited by jstreet

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Hey Fargo, which lines across from alpental caught your eye? We saw a few interesting things over that way that we considered attacking before deciding to head to the Source Lake Line today. I'd kind of like to explore some of these soon.

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the columbia river gorge is NOT in, least the western part :)

 

crux of me n' the hund's journey just now were slipping down icy slopes in strap-less crocks, big chunks of mist falls trying to smush us in the darkness n' not crashing and burning on an iiiiiiicy 84 :rawk:

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I can't point to any specific lune in particular but there seemed to be several couple pitch Scottish style climbs and some pillars higher up that might prove in shape. My camera dies in the wind and cold so unfortunately no pics.

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Hey DRep, That was me and Rob S on the source lake line today. I left my camera with photos in Robs car so no photos till tommorow. It's in but it's thinner than I've ever seen it, and this is the 5th or 6th time I've climbed it. Kind of seems like WI 4 but thin, hollow, and poor protection... I'm calling it a 4++ right now ;) ...pretty spicy. And it's absolutely dry, no water dripping at all, so it's condition isn't going to change till we get some serious melt freeze cycles.

 

Here's what it looked like on thursday...

 

DSC031381.JPG

 

DSC03143.JPG

 

DSC03144.JPG

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Thanks Alex. BTW, got a glimpse of Chock Stone Falls on Thursday as we headed into Source Lake. The upper pillar looked real nice. Some of my climbing partners went and climbed it today and said they had fun on the upper pillar after they got the the first couple of pitches of snow plowing out of the way. Another group was just finishing it off when they arrived so that made alot easier for my friends.

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Here are some photos my friends took yesterday when they climbed chockstone falls. Photos by Alex Bendetov.

 

The upper pillar looks sweet

chockstone-falls2.jpg

 

Here's the start of the climb... you can see a glimpse of the upper pillar up high. Two rope lengths of mostly snow plowing to get to the upper pillar.

chockstone-falls1.jpg

 

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top-rope gorge-wanking in high-winds n' warmish-wedder, just under the 14 at cape horn :)

ice71.jpg

 

ice61.jpg

 

ice51.jpg

 

ice41.jpg

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Another group was just finishing it off when they arrived so that made alot easier for my friends.

 

That would be Justin Busch and myself who did the uphill swim to the pillar. Ice was good quality with a few mixed moves to top out. Felt like 3++ climbing with 5- skiing later in the day (due to the heinous rain crust).

 

justin_2.jpg

 

The High P was fun while it lasted but this week looks great for skiing again.

 

Hiya Ben. Gorge looking a little thin...

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