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Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help?
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brokesomeribs


Jun 22, 2010, 2:13 AM
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Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help?
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It looks like I'm going to be able to take about 12-14 days off later this summer. Late July or pretty much any time in August. My partner and I are itching to start cutting our teeth on bigger and prouder lines than are available to us out on the East Coast.

We spent all winter leading up to WI4 all over the Catskills, Daks, and Smuggs. I'm the stronger crag climber.... a 5.8-5.9 Gunks leader and I usually push into the .10's when I'm out west where the grades *seem* softer to me. I'm solid on .11 sport climbs and have my eye on .12's this season. My partner has more experience on bigger routes... he's summited Rainier, Grand Teton, and some other bigger (but less technical) routes.

Are there technical routes in the lower 48 that have a decent chance of still requiring crampons and tools to climb during the above-mentioned time period? Ideally we'd like to keep the climbing to around AI3 and 5.7 and lower until we get comfortable moving fast over big terrain. We're open to pretty much any area... Cascades, RMP, GTNP, any of the Colorado 14'ers, etc.

Searching has left me with the following routes, but I know very little beyond their names, and it also appears that they're mostly likely going to be completely dried/sublimated out by August.

Bell Cord Couloir on the Maroon Bells
Dreamweaver on Mt. Meeker

Any thoughts, suggestions, or beta would be welcome and appreciated. Standard RC trolling is expected.


(This post was edited by brokesomeribs on Jun 22, 2010, 9:22 AM)


bergbryce


Jun 23, 2010, 12:18 PM
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Re: [brokesomeribs] Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help? [In reply to]
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you should try yose or jtree to see how soft the grades are there.
so you seem to be mixing some grades, A3 and 5.7 but you want ice? Do you mean AI3 and maybe like M3?
from what I know most everything melts out by that time of year, even things like Shasta are crappy.

the high sierra has some late summer ice options but i hear they are getting funkier (read less ice, more choss) every year. and you have to deal with lots of californio's and soft western grades.


mr_rogers


Jun 23, 2010, 1:07 PM
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Re: [brokesomeribs] Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help? [In reply to]
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Do you guys not have passports or something? (it seems you've got a car)

If you want summer alpine ice then...

(1) Go get the book of lies (http://www.amazon.com/...imbing/dp/0921102143)

(2) Go drive up to icefields parkway in canada

(3) Go nuts.


clews


Jun 23, 2010, 2:09 PM
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Re: [mr_rogers] Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help? [In reply to]
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mr_rogers wrote:
Do you guys not have passports or something? (it seems you've got a car)

If you want summer alpine ice then...

(1) Go get the book of lies and gross inaccuracies (http://www.amazon.com/...imbing/dp/0921102143)

(2) Go drive up to icefields parkway in canada

(3) Go nuts.

fixed


brokesomeribs


Jun 23, 2010, 4:54 PM
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Re: [bergbryce] Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help? [In reply to]
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I've never climbed at yose or jtree. But a couple summers ago I spent 2-3 weeks around Boulder climbing in Eldo and Boulder Canyon, I was easily leading 10's on trad when I could barely scrape my way up 8+/9- routes in the Gunks. Hence, the routes I've actually climbed out west *seem* softer. I'm doing my best to describe my level of climbing ability so I don't wind up over my head and die, I'm not trying to spray about sandbags and weak grades.

Reread my post. I said AI3, not A3. The inclusion of the 5.7 was because I'm sure that in August, there will most certainly be pitches of pure rock with no ice.


Lazlo


Jun 23, 2010, 6:58 PM
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Re: [brokesomeribs] Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help? [In reply to]
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The Eastern Sierras might still have some worthy culiours (spelling?). Look into u notch and v notch near Whitney.


petsfed


Jun 23, 2010, 7:16 PM
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Re: [brokesomeribs] Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help? [In reply to]
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Try the northern Wind Rivers. Be prepared to do first ascents.


brokesomeribs


Jun 23, 2010, 7:27 PM
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Re: [petsfed] Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help? [In reply to]
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I've thought of that. Not sure if I've got the cojones. Or the skills.

It's enticing, but probably a bit more than I (we?) are ready to handle.


jnrose5


Jun 24, 2010, 1:21 PM
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Re: [brokesomeribs] Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help? [In reply to]
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The volcanoes of the North Cascades should still have some of what you're looking for by that time of year. The Kautz Glacier on Mt. Rainier or the Coleman Headwall on the north side of Mt. Baker are the two options that immediately come to mind. Both of those will provide retreat options as well.


builttospill


Jul 6, 2010, 1:10 AM
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Re: [brokesomeribs] Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help? [In reply to]
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Yes, there are such routes. Here are some good ones that are at or below that grade range. Unfortunately, a lot of them aren't in season that time of year. Summitpost has info on lots of these too.

Late Spring (May/June):
-Dreamweaver
-Martha in the same area

July/August:
-Black Ice Couloir, Grand Teton
-NW Ice Couloir, Middle Teton
-Glacier Route, Middle Teton
-Enclosure ice Couloir, The Enclosure (near the Grand Teton)
-Tower 1 Gully, Mt. Helen, Wind Rivers
-Thor Peak, Hidden Couloir (Tetons)

There are lots of other ones in the Tetons that are much less reliable (Stettner Couloir used to be a good spring one until rockfall made it sketchy, and some others on the north side of the Grand). These ones are fairly reliable (Black ice less so now, but Enclosure Ice, NW Ice and the Glacier Route are doable every year for awhile).

Lots of stuff in the Cascades that I've never climbed.

I'd recommend the Tetons. There are at least a couple of ice/snow routes that are reliable, and there are lots of alpine rock routes in your grade range that are classic (5.5-5.9 or whatever). I've never climbed anything in the Cascades, however, so others may feel differently. I've really enjoyed my time spent in the Tetons and it sounds like our interests are similar.


chris


Jul 9, 2010, 10:55 PM
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Re: [builttospill] Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help? [In reply to]
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The alpine ice is starting to get good in the Sierra this year, especially after such a good winter. The couloirs are great!

As of today (confirmed):
U-Notch
V-Notch
North Couloir on Gilbert
All Couloirs on Thompson (4)
Ice Nein
North Couloir on North Peak


EvilMonkey


Jul 26, 2010, 12:11 PM
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Re: [brokesomeribs] Summer alpine ice? July - August? Help? [In reply to]
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built to spill put together a pretty good list. he mentioned a lot of what i had in mind. things to consider:
mt. helen, in the winds, is a 15 mile hike in. however, i believe there is also a summertime ice route or two on jackson peak, which is nearby. the black ice couloir hasn't been coming in very well in recent years you'll have to check conditions, but expect it thin with rock climbing in areas. there are a few other routes in the enclosure besides the enclosure ice couloir. visionquest couloir is one. i just dont know if the ice is exposed that early in the season. same goes for the middle teton climbs. once again, check conditions online.


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