Joined: Wed Mar 09, 2005 4:15 pm Posts: 2455 Location: san diego CA
Warning: Long and Lots of pics. Thanks JimW for the invite and to the great crew. JimW., Fassnor, Chris I ,Steve, Frantz Ray,Larry,Rob,Shelly.
Tioga Pass Resort is a place I have wanted to get to make this a perfect season,but the place is booked up quick and I couldnt get a group together so it was looking like a bust. Then JimW sent me an email saying he might have a slot avalible in april. Checked the calendar and realized I was in. Soon I found myself turning left at the MOMart and soon I saw this
A couple of miles more and I was at the gate
I wated a while and JimW. and the Santa Cruz club arrived. About the same time stage one of our transportation to the lodge arrived
We loaded in and up Hwy 120 we went. I have driven this road in the summer going up to yosemite but this was a whole new world. We came to a stop at the edge of the snow line and loaded our gear into sleds
We started skinning up the highway with light packs as the TPR crew took of with our heavy stuff. the skin in was beautiful
After a couple of hours of easy skinning we arrived at the lodge
The place was unbelieveable. Built in 1914 it was rustic, but very comfortable .....um maybe boardering on plush.Here are some views of the inside
Our first view of the main lodge
The Dinning Room
JimW. rustles on up to the free flowing Hot Chocolate machine
I was eyeing tonights desert, apple berry cobbler
To bad we couldnt see what the outside looked like
After we unpacked in our cabins, which had double beds ,electricity and electric heaters we went for a quick skin up what the locals call the bread run. It was bad for me. It had a sun crust about 1/2 inch thick and I was riding the new voile, but I had my bindings too far up and couldnt float the nose. I laughed about it and vowed to adjust the gear back at the Lodge.
Saturday we ate a king breakfast at 8 am ,waited for the sandwhich bar and then got ready
Soon we were skinning up towards Dana Plateau with a foot of fresh on the ground. I had adjusted my bindings and was sure the nasty suncrust was hidden.
After about an hour Mt Dana came into view
The Dana Couloir was looking Good , but it was way too windy
Our plan for the day was to make it to Dana Plateau. JimW had suggested it because this looked like the only clear day and we had to see the plateau and all the good lines off it. He was correct. the place is amazing
Frantz had traveled all the way from Rome New York. I think he liked the place.
JimW at the top of 3rd pillar
And Me at the top of 3rd pillar as steve looks over the edge
This is what the view is like from where steve is
The 3rd pillar couloir looked doable to Chris I and ME, except for all the windloaded snow and we didnt bring a rope to rapell
We then headed over to Ellery Bowl . It looked so good fro far away, but after digging a pit close to the top we decided it was too dicey, and the cornices hanging up top were huge. If it did slide, it would be a big one. Better safe than sorry
The Ellery Bowl
We hung out up top untill the wind drove us off. We started back the way we came and dropped the "Bread Run" again. Nothing too step but the evil sun crust was gone and a foot of soft was in its place. So the crew charged
JimW on the way down . (Sorry, some of these are stills from video. im still working on that)
Larry seemed to be likeing the conditions
We went for a second run then returned to the warm lodge. We ate roast pork that night and took hot showers. This place is backcountry hilton. That night at Dinner the owner, Ron told us a storm was coming and it looked bad. He said we could leave first thing in the morning or we would be stranded untill wednesday. I had just gotten settled in so I chose to be stranded. We ate and disscussed the next days plans. Fassnor and Frantz had chose to leave so there plans were different from ours. Rob and Shelly had come in on Saturday so we all decided to hit up something steep off the plateau. This time we would take a rope. We talked it over and asked Ron what he thought. He told us no one had dropped the bowl all year and it was super wind loaded. On his advise we changed plans and headed to Mt Gaylor. Nice top bowl with good trees below. At breakfast, Ron checked the weather and told us the storm had gotten worse and we would all be leaving by this evening. He told us to check back in by 3 pm. We needed to pack up our stuff when we came in and after that we would skin down
We started our climb
It was sunny but the wind was starting to howl. You could see the snow moving around
We made short work of Gaylor and soon we were up as high as the good snow
Steve looks over into Tioga lake area off the back of Mt Gaylor
JimW drops from the ridge
Rob in the Trees
We took a break
Our first drop was excellent with great snow inthe trees. The woods were full of Hoots and Hollers.
We skinned up for our last run. Again great snow and long lines. The clouds were coming in and it was time to pack up. We made it back to the lodge and we were ready to leave by 3. We skinned out to more great views. You could feel the weather moving in.
Some of us rode out under our own power the whole way. However, I think the TPR crew knew the Cheif because him and his young brave got a different deal. Here is them arriving at the snow line
One last gear change over and we were gone
We said our goodbys , some went north while others went down to Mammoth. We rode the heaviest snow I have evry felt inbounds on Monday...but we had a great time. Cant wait to go back. And to everyone, save for next season. I got a feeling some little get together will be going on. Thanks JimW. for the invite and thanks to the rest of you Guys and Girls for making this another great trip. SPECIAL THANKS TO THE CREW OF TPR.
Joined: Mon Mar 07, 2005 8:37 pm Posts: 102 Location: Boulder, CO
Thanks for the TR P420! Really enjoyed everyone's company even though I couldn't keep up with you guys during evening festivities - I gotta work on that. I got so beat every day just keeping up on the climbs. Special thanks to JimW who really spent a lot of time on the organization side and even brought his guitar - which we all vastly enjoyed - and who will very soon post some of the 300 pics sitting in his laptop or risk a coating of peanut butter on his skins and/or in his sleeping bag -which remains in my possesion.
~~~ eagerly anticipating the next trip. SteveP
Great TR, p420! Looks like a fun time. Between hitting scrubfest, splitfest, and TPR, you must be in competition with Nomad as the most widely traveled splitter this year.
Too bad you got booted out early and also too bad that you couldn't hit up any of the Dana couloirs or Ellery Bowl. The guys at TPR said no one had dropped the bowl all year. Do you know if that is typical? Are those lines usually not safe until spring?