Tuesday, July 26, 2016

7/22/2016, Mt. Adams

The homie Muller hit me up and wanted to climb Mt. Adams.  Spending my days on the arduous job search, I definitely could use a little mountain time.  We were expecting the snow to be sun cupped and runnelled down low but were ambitious of smooth snow on the upper mountain.  

Fresh bear scat on the morning trail, still soft. 

Mountain dew on the Lupine.

We got a late start, and watched a variety of folks descending the mountain via "butt surfing".  This dude was rad, I wish would have taken a portrait of him.  Long beard and a big pack.  "Dropping"….

There was a solid cloud band hovering around 9000' making for some cool views.  Portal to Mt. Hood.

Summit views.  Rainier to the north.

Muller stoked to be on top of Adams for the first time.

After some debate, we decided to ride the SW chutes, and to our delight they held perfect corn.
Very fun day, and awesome shredding for the middle of summer.  Oregon rules.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

6/27/2016, Wy East Face, Mt. Hood

It is interesting that Mt. Hood is the closest Volcano to my house, and I generally don't give it the attention it deserves.  It is the tallest Mountain in Oregon, and offers some of the most aggressive terrain of any Oregon volcano.  I had been itching to ride the Wy East face, and after bailing on it twice all ready this spring, I was motivated to make it happen.  I slept at meadows on 6/26 and got an early start the next morning leaving the car at 4:30am.  

The Wy East face getting first light in the morning. 

This route up the mountain is efficient.  Ridge walking…

Gaining the summit ridge, I got to peak into the crater at the hoards of South Side climbers.
I was alone.

Beautiful views to the South.  Mt. Jefferson, the Three Sisters, and Broken Top.

The snow did not get a good refreeze overnight, and I was concerned about stability.  I wasted no time and dropped ASAP, at 8:45am.  The snow rode well; deep, fast, corn.  I triggered a small wet sluff on the angle change halfway down the line, going onto the glacier.  I was not concerned on that slope, but I also would not have ridden the Newton-Clark headwall.  On a slope of steeper grade, I believe conditions would have been unstable and dangerous.  Mt. Hood needs to experience some solid overnight freezes to solidify the recent snow, and return to a true corn cycle.

Really fun morning!

Sunday, June 26, 2016

6/19/2016, Mt. Adams, SW Chutes

In mid June, a cold front passed through the Cascades, bringing freezing levels down to 6000 - 7000'.  Normally this time of year, I write-off powder, because I consider the likelihood of getting good snow just as likely as finding dangerous transitional conditions.  On 6/19/2016, it appeared there would be a brief opportunity to find winter snow before temperatures heated up.  With the Drew, Stratton, and Juan as the crew, we got an alpine start and climbed Mt. Adams under the moonlight. 

Full moon hikes are my favorite.  What a beautiful morning.  The boys...

By sunrise we were nearing Pikers Peak.  Colorful sunrise, Mt. Hood, the Mountain Shadow.

We reached the summit by 7am.  Summit pano to the North.

The snow was looking good.  Wintery pow.  We waited for our SW facing run to get early sunlight, and dropped around 8am.  Stratton slashing a winter wave at 11,600'.

Getting onto our slope, we were stoking….
Drew shredding.

Strat with the toeside rooster tail.

Drew throwing buckets.

And in the whiteroom…

Our tracks, faintly seen from a distance. Wow, what a great day.  Easily the best day of June snowboarding I have ever had.  What a awesome experience. Yeeeee…

Thursday, June 16, 2016

6/12/2016, South Sister

 On TFJ, Strat and I were brainstorming objectives for the upcoming high pressure and corn cycle.  Strat had some lines he wanted to check out on the westside of South Sister and we decided to give it a go.  We climbed Southy, dropped the westside chutes, reclimbed, and then dropped the south side.  It was a great day climbing and riding 7500'.

Summit chillin, round 1.

Shred-master, engage. 

Westside chute'rs.  The entrance was spicy but we worked it.

Glacier turns lower down.

After a sluggish second climb, we were back on the top soaking in the views.  Pano to the south.

Strat schralping some evening corn.  Fun day. 

Thursday, May 26, 2016

5/03/2016, Mt. Emerson, North Couloir

On 5/03, Brooks and I linked up again to get out on a tour.  Brooks being the crusher he is, we decided to go for a big day from Buttermilk Road outside of Bishop.  Our objective was the North Couloir on Mt. Emerson. We started early and even though there was a good snowpack up high, Brooks mentioned this was the least amount of snow he had seen down low in this area.  

Brooks on the rocky approach.  Good views…

We chose this objective because of its due north aspect and large protective rock walls.  Getting into the couloir, we were stoked to find perfect pow.  Going up… 

From the top, the view south was impressive to say the least.  The Eastern Sierra is a large and expansive range. 

And the drop down the couloir was easily the best of the trip.  Brooks had ridden the line 4 times before, and was kind enough to let me drop first.  After ripping it up, I found a nice spot in the basin and snapped some pics of Brooks ripping it up….

After a fun run, we marinated in stoke for 30 minutes, and then continued up to our exit chute.  On the commute to the exit chute, we got a great look back at the North Couloir.  Brooks hiking in splitboarding glory…

And, shredding the exit chute (kindergarten chute).  What an awesome day!

5/01/2016, Wineglass Couloir

After 2 consecutive days of touring with Tanner, we were beat.  Tanner had to work over the weekend, and was not available as a partner.  Jim set me up with his friend Ray, and we decided to head up McGee creek to see what conditions were like.  After going back and forth between, the "Wineglass" couloir and the "North Face" of Esha Peak, we decided to go for the "Wineglass" couloir. 

Signs are cool…

This was our objective the prominent snow finger displaying a wineglass like shape.  Not much snow in the apron, but the 3000' couloir itself held both perfect corn, and wind affected pow. 

After what felt like an eternity of booting, we were finally approaching the top of the upper snowfield.
Looking down, Ray was feeling it.

Pow in the upper snowfield and corn through the extended choke.  What an awesome run.
Ray shredding…

After an awesome run, we tackled the creek crossing, and headed back to the rig.  We bullshitted in the parking lot, and then heading to the hot spring to complete another solid day on the Eastside. 

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

4/29/2016, Matterhorn, West Couloir

Mass posting continued….

After a long, fun, and exhausting day on Bloody Mountain, Tanner and I headed North to go for the Matterhorn West Couloir.  Tanner said it had been on his list for sometime, and with promising conditions, it was time to check it off!

Standard Eastside approach:  Are we backpacking or splitboarding?

Oh, there is the snow we came for.  It actually is winter up here!  Tanner slogging along.

And hours of effort later, we were booting up our objective couloir.  Powder again, I love using my verts in late April!

No good riding shots, but I did get this shot looking down the couloir.  Water on the lens... ;)

And we capped off another great day, with a trip to a new hot springs…  I sure love the Eastern Sierra.