Post subject: July 16, 2006 - Paradise Glacier, Mt Rainier
Posted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 11:33 am
Joined: Mon Nov 15, 2004 6:48 am Posts: 206 Location: WA
Sunday I found myself back on Rainier's south side taking a tour with the Turns-All-Year locals. There were the usually suspects Ronj, Maddog, JW, Sag, Darryl along with Zap, Jill and Scottsman. Today was to be the mellow day but it turned out to be the opposite.
I woke to a deer foraging 4 feet from my face. For a few minutes it was close enough to touch. Eventually I had to move and when I did the deer took off. I made my way up to the parking lot proper to snag a spot pre-tourist. I basked in the early morning sun, strumming my six-string and worked on hydration while I waited for the others. One by one they rolled in.
But not before watching these guys.
Sometime between 9-9:30am the gang was hiking from the lot at 5,400ft. Instead of going the usual scenic, tourist free route we opted for the traditional tourist approach up Panaroma Pt. After many breaks and chats with inquiring minds the gang made it to Pebble Creek (7,200ft). We started skinning about 50ft above and continued to our usual crossover at 7,600ft.
The snow on Paradise Glacier was in great shape.
Minimal suncups and the first few inches already corned to perfection. Here's the gang skinning up.
Everyone looks dressed the same except for Scottsman in the front.
We stopped at 8,400ft at a nice bench. We had already passed what I thought was the best snow and as we continued it just got dirty, cut up and variable. From here we marinated under the sun with a panoramic of the Tatoosh, Goat Rocks, Adams, Hood and St Helens to stare at in between jokes. The hut style experience included some cheese and wine that was very very gouda. After a little indulgence of my own I too was feeling kinda gouda.
It was nearing 2pm and it was time to start our descent. Our line took us down a different route weaving thru some crevasses and sniffing out the steepest portions to descend.
Our tracks so farÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
Do I need say anythingÃ¢â‚¬Â¦?
The guy that got me into splitboarding is skiing with still a long ways to goÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
Looking back up at our tracks before we have to skin back upÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
We ended up on the edge of the Cowlitz Glacier around 6,300ft. Now you see that saddle way up there about a 1,000ft or so? Yup we have to make it over that. So the gang proceeded to skin up the 30-35 degree slope. Eventually the slope became steep enough that booting was more efficient for the last 40ft. With no crampons it was sure nice having two skiers kick in steps. If I would have known that Sag was going to short rope the rest of them I would have waited. After a short carry through the saddle it was time to break out the poles for some flats that eventually led to a mellow pitch. Now there was a long traverse on uneven, rock cratered snow underneath some cliffs followed by a scramble across a steep dirt and rock field. All to get to the next snow patch. This type of behavior continued for a bit longer but eventually everyone just shouldered their gear and hiked the last mile or so out.
Joined: Wed Jun 07, 2006 3:06 pm Posts: 155 Location: Kings Beach, Ca
Nice, climbed rainier last Sunday/Monday....was really wishing I would have lugged the board to Muir as glissading just isn't the same. I was kind of surprised how few people were up there with skis/snowboards, the snow was looking really good.
_________________ f$ck you and those two weird planks you rode in on!