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Mountain Conditions July 18th, 2012

Posted Jul 18 2012 9:00am


Torment - Forbidden - We followed the Selected Climbs beta, utilizing the South Ridge to gain Torment. The Taboo Glacier is filled in and provided quick travel to the approach couloir. The couloir itself it still mostly snow, but moving left onto loose rock at mid-height avoided a poorly supported section of snow near the top. There are still a couple snow patches on the SE face of Torment that seem precariously perched and we minimized the time we spent under them. The rappel onto the pocket glacier on the NE side of Torment sported a 15' wide moat that required serious shenanigans to get over. Easy travel led down and across this glacier onto the next rock rib, but will get more challenging as the moat grows. We then avoided the classic steep snow traverse by climbing up and over the next rock tower (easy, vastly more protectable, but time consuming). Our bivy was located near the prominent, pyramid-shaped gendarme at mid-traverse on a perfect bench of snow. We found running water on the south side of the crest about 50' from camp. Easier travel led to the West Ridge notch.

The West Ridge of Forbidden is in great condition, although there are some snow patches on the north side of the ridge. The West Ridge Couloir is starting to get broken up, but remains quite passable. The last pitch to the notch is rock. Lowers and belayed down climbing off a mix of rock and snow anchors got us down the couloir reasonably quickly. Most of the rock anchors are quite difficult/impossible to reach given the gaping moats. At the bottom of the couloir, we descended to the southwest (climber's left) of the lowest rock outcrop as the east side is a jumbled mess of snow blocks that had a series of wandering bootprints in them.

Other conditions:
The Quien Sabe has a nice boot pack up it and looks to be in good condition. Word is that the Sharkfin Gully is still all snow. The NF of Buckner's bergshrund isn't completely open yet, although its NF Couloir looks to be impassable.

Ingalls Peak: Trip Report with beta.

Mt Baker Coleman/Deming: The trail is dry to the cabin. Hogsback has dry camping and running water. The Eagle's Nest does not have running water. There are some larger crevasses that have opened up but no sketchy snow bridges yet. Cool nights but not freezing temperatures have led to really good snow travel conditions. We had minimal boot penetration in the morning and were penetrating up to our ankles at the most while plunge stepping on the way down. Overall conditions were really good. 

Road Closures: 

-Talupus Lake Road/Talupus Creek Trailhead closed weekdays through mid August for logging. 

-Mason Lake Road/Ira Spring Trailhead closed weekdays through mid August for Helicopter logging. 

-Repair work is closing the lower section of Suiattle River Road 26 about eight miles north of Darrington, Wash., at Highway 530 to Boundry Bridge July 9 - Aug. 6.

Falcon Closures:

Index: Beach Ledge in the Cheeks area closed for Peregrine's until July 7th.

Leavenworth: Midnight and Noontime Rocks closed April 1 - July 31 for raptor nesting.
I-90 Corridor
Statewide Updates compiled by Alasdair Turner:  (Thanks Alasdair!)

Gold Bar Climbing Access: As of Winter 2012 the Washington Climbers Coalition (WCC) has secured access to the gate on the road which leads up to the Gold Bar boulders and the approach to Zeke’s Wall. Climbers who are members of the WCC are welcome to climb at the Gold Bar Boulders and to park there for access to Zeke’s Wall, as guests of the Manke Timber Company. Please note: all climbers using this road must be members of the WCC and have a WCC sticker as well as a valid Discover Pass.

Climbing Access and Other Beta:   Washington Climbers Coalition  Route and Conditions from Mt. Baker Rangers:  Mount Baker Climbing Blog . Northwest Weather and Avalanche Center Mountain Specific  Weather  Forecasting. Forecast for  Mount Rainier.
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             Mount McKinley Recreational Forecast

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             Denali from Wonder Lake


Lead guide Ian McEleney recently looked down U-notch and ascertained that the ice will likely be gone by the end of the month. It is questionable whether it would be climbable now. 

Sierra Trail Conditions Report

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Red Rock Canyon Campground will close May 29th, 2012 and will re-open Labor Day Weekend.

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Red Rock Canyon

-- Webcam -- Red Rock Webcam
-- The Red Rock Campground is currently closed and will re-open Labor Day weekend 2012.
-- The late exit and overnight permit number for Red Rock Canyon is 702-515-5050. If there is any chance that you will be inside the park after closing, be sure to call this number so that you don't get a ticket.

--The scenic drive currently opens its gates at 6 in the morning.


--Webcam Joshua Tree Webcam


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