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  1. #51
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    3,470
    To hell with it. I'm just going to periodically put my Eastern Sierra TRs here so that I can find them without having to search through various threads.

    January 2018

    Let's start by comparing January 2017 . . .


    . . . with January 2018.


    It felt like November.


    Knowing that conditions weren't great, I got impatient and made an ill-fated attempt to bag Feather as a solo overnighter.


    Still, I got some much needed tent time.


    Sadly, I didn't make it to Feather or even Royce Lakes. Around 10,800, everything was whomping and fracturing no matter which way I went. It was unnerving. There was a facet layer about 12-16" below surprisingly decent powder. So, I cut my losses and turned tail. My campsite is below.


    March 2018

    After borderline despair, March delivered a prodigious amount of snow to the Sierra. It went from abjectly terrible to okay and almost average.

    whatsupdoc and I made our first trip down and settled on the north side of Basin Mountain. (I don't know why the Buttermilks area is not a national park, although I'm grateful for the easy access.)


    Our almost random choice ended up being a stunning, sustainedly steep 2,000'+ couloir with a cool choke about a 2/3rds of the way down.


    It was firm but edgeable. Not a place to fall though.



  2. #52
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    NH
    Posts
    212
    Quote Originally Posted by AKbruin View Post
    Our almost random choice ended up being a stunning, sustainedly steep 2,000'+ couloir with a cool choke about a 2/3rds of the way down.
    Fantastic.

  3. #53
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    3,470
    April 2018

    The day after Basin, whatsupdoc and I did Mt. Williamson as an overnighter. Wikipedia informs me that Williamson is both the second tallest mountain in California (after Mt. Whitney) and the second biggest mountain (after Mt. Shasta).

    The approach, however, was humbling. I thought I had a fairly high tolerance for sufferfests. Williamson, however, left me a little broken.

    This was actually the easy part.

    Photo: whatsupdoc

    This is the view from "the notch," which one gains after a 90 minute uphill scramble. There is no trail anywhere. It was followed by a 45-minute traverse toward the creek and then another 4 or 5 hours of scrambling to the snow at about 9,000'.


    So, we did about 6 hours of this the first day and maybe 4 hours the second day. I do not exaggerate when I say that there was literally no level ground. At best, there was maybe a half a mile of walking in the creek itself, which merely involved boulder skipping and the occasional 3rd class move. But the rest of the time one was either walking up, down, or across 30-degree slopes with varying degrees of loose dirt, small boulders, big boulders, schwacky foliage, etc.


    . . . like this.

    Photo: whatsupdoc

    Backcountry skiing is so much fun.

    Photo: whatsupdoc

    Enough bitching about the approach though. The views from the summit (14,370') were stunning.


    Well, maybe a little more bitching.


    Whatsupdoc more than 10,000 feet above the valley floor.


    Langley, Russell, and Whitney.






    #gladididit #butneveragain

  4. #54
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    3,470
    On Friday, Franz Klammer flew into Reno from Connecticut at midnight, arrived in a Topaz Lake motel at 2 a.m., and was picked up by yours truly at 5:30 a.m.

    After years of staring at Gibbs from 395, we finally skied its east face. The 2-mile dry hike from the car to snow included a trail for 80% of the way, which felt blissfully luxurious after Williamson.


    Franz makes some friends on the boot up to the summit.




    We got fun transitional powder to corn for 3,500' to 3,800' of the descent.


    This is a great line.





    On Sunday, whatsupdoc and another friend joined us for my second attempt at Feather this year, and third since last year.

    Telescoping poles: Bad.
    Voile straps: Good.
    (This happened about 4 miles into a 18.5 mile day.)


    Unfortunately, the weather turned to flat light and wind just as we started booting the couloir. So enjoy the skinning photos.




    Does flat light look better in black and white?


    Here's a photo of our couloir from Dade last June.


    whatsupdoc.


    Franz Klammer.


    After post-ski beers and chips, franzklammer drove straight to Reno, where he had a midnight flight (middle seat) back to Connecticut. He texted me mid-morning the following Monday to let me know that he had finally taken a shower. He couldn't have smelled good on his redeye:

  5. #55
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    NH
    Posts
    212
    A+

  6. #56
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    429
    JESUS FUCKING CHRIST...this thread is so good.

    Rekindled how bummed I was to have injured myself right before xmas last year
    TLDR; Ski faster. Quit breathing. Don't crash.

  7. #57
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Vanity Fair
    Posts
    2,654
    so great. will make it back there someday hopefully
    Ich bitte dich nur, weck mich nicht.

  8. #58
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Bottom feeding
    Posts
    5,261
    Yes, A+. Great stuff.
    Ski straps are great for poles and all, but I had no idea they weighed so much.
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    Well maybe I'm the faggot America
    I'm not a part of a redneck agenda

  9. #59
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    3,470
    Quote Originally Posted by klar View Post
    so great. will make it back there someday hopefully
    Please do and bring freak and CM as well! Otherwise, I've told the missus and Florian of my general desire to go Tirol.

    Quote Originally Posted by plugboots View Post
    Yes, A+. Great stuff.
    Ski straps are great for poles and all, but I had no idea they weighed so much.
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Views: 80
Size:  606.9 KB
    Ha. I remember that being a steeper and a harder move than it looks like in that photo, although it certainly captures the mode well.

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