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 Post subject: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 2:54 pm 
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Location: Bishop, Ca
On Tuesday I headed out from the Whitney Portal with the intention of doing the north couloir of Mt Muir. I knew the southern portions of the range hadn't been getting nearly as much snow as the Mammoth area this year, but was hoping the higher elevations would be filled in.

Right now, the Whitney Portal Road is melted out for about three miles past the 'road closed' sign, though I'm not sure about the legality of driving it.

From there, a nice gentle climb brought me to a bench above Consultation Lake, where I set up camp.

Nightfall (Mt Muir is the highpoint in the center):
Image

Moonrise:
Image

Image

Sunrise:
Image

some product placement:
Image

From camp, I still couldn't see the couloir. It's tucked away behind the east buttress. After breakfast I headed out to get a better look at it.

First view:
Image

closer:
Image

Yeah.
Not one, but two cliffs still in there. The lower one could probably be negotiated, but not the upper. This one will have to wait for another day.

So I decided to at least try to summit still, from the backside. I followed the Whitney trail along the ridge, and up towards Mt Muir.

Views:
Image

The summit block:
Image

As I got closer to it, I found big ledges and easy climbing. Then, about 20 feet from the top ran into a section that I wasn't willing to do in mountaineering boots.
I'm beginning to realize the downside of having a hard sole. While it may be nice for climbing snow, they don't do too well on rock. And I found myself wishing I had my regular snowboard boots.

So I climbed down, around the corner, and back up again. Still couldn't find a comfortable way to the summit. Now I'm 0 for 2 for the day. Figured it would be best to get out of there.

Next time.

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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 3:04 pm 
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I was just thinking of sending you a PM titled, "so whadya hit?". :)

Would the couloir have been a go with a partner and raps? Looks really nice otherwise.

Great pics too! :thumbsup: I foresee some BD catalog submissions in the works! :thatrocks:

ps. need to chat on the phone soon about a couple things.


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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 3:20 pm 
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Sweet pics BCD...are permits required to hit that in winter?

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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 4:10 pm 
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bcd wrote:
As I got closer to it, I found big ledges and easy climbing. Then, about 20 feet from the top ran into a section that I wasn't willing to do in mountaineering boots.
I'm beginning to realize the downside of having a hard sole. While it may be nice for climbing snow, they don't do too well on rock. And I found myself wishing I had my regular snowboard boots.


Can you elaborate on your selected summit block route(s)? I was under the impression that there were several Class 3 variations to the top (although quickly becoming Class 4 without proper routefinding). So I am really wondering what type of terrain you encountered where a snowboard boot would have been more advantageous than a mountaineering boot? What type of boot did you use?

I personally wouldn't want a snowboard boot for class 3 such as...
Image
this, on the way back from summit of Tyndall (my first splitboard descent).

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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 4:53 pm 
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bcd wrote:
some product placement:
Image


Let me get this straight. You lugged that tripod all the way up there to TAKE a picture of it?

j/k :thumpsup:

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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 5:49 pm 
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Location: Bishop, Ca
mtnrider wrote:
Sweet pics BCD...are permits required to hit that in winter?


You do need a permit, but they're easy to get in the winter. The advance reservation/lottery process doesn't start until May or June.


96avs01 wrote:
Can you elaborate on your selected summit block route(s)? I was under the impression that there were several Class 3 variations to the top (although quickly becoming Class 4 without proper routefinding). So I am really wondering what type of terrain you encountered where a snowboard boot would have been more advantageous than a mountaineering boot? What type of boot did you use?


It is class three. There's a slabby traverse near the top, and I just couldn't trust my feet.
In tennis shoes, I wouldn't have even thought twice about it. But I haven't spent enough time climbing in my boots to have figured out the balance.

Most of the time it's not a big deal, but it becomes problematic on slick, slabby rock.
With a soft sole, as your heel rises up the front of the foot can stay flat. That leaves more surface touching the rock, and better traction. With a hard sole, as your heel rises up the boot just tilts and you get less and less traction as you step forward.

When I started across the slab, the only thing touching the rock was just the edge of the sole. So I chickened out.

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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 7:05 pm 
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glad you were sensible (not chickening out!) not climbing that section considering you were alone (?)

im noticing two things....looks like the tripod legs are poles? nice! and it also looks like to the left of the main line if it was filled in enough that would go also.

anyway nice work. hope you git er done one of these days!


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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 8:04 pm 
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bcd wrote:
There's a slabby traverse near the top, and I just couldn't trust my feet.


bcd wrote:
When I started across the slab, the only thing touching the rock was just the edge of the sole. So I chickened out.


So u were already on summit plateau?

Not meaning to critique, likely over-analyzing conditions/boots fueled by hard boot contemplation thread, and weight of my setup.

One must always listen to the 'internal voice',it has self-preservation in mind! :drinks:

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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 8:19 pm 
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Nice. I expect to see some of those pics in a BD catalog soon! Also like the ski pole tripod idea.

Um... where's this? :)

Image


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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 10:11 pm 
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This is an amazing picture!
Image

and of course I had the same thought as everybody else! Black Diamond Catalog!

I have to say you are a great photographer and you know what I would love!?

A slideshow of some of your gems at the Splitboard party!

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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2009 10:33 am 
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that mt muir line looks so good!......if it had snow :(

seriously, have you submittted any of your sweet tent shots to BD?


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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Sat Mar 14, 2009 1:21 am 
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Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 4:42 am
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Location: Girdwood, AK!!!
Awesome photos.

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 Post subject: Re: 3.11.09 - (not much of) An attempt on Mt Muir
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 2009 8:37 am 
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Joined: Thu Feb 17, 2005 10:03 am
Posts: 33
Location: Bishop
I guess the rock in that area is so jaw dropping you got no questions on riding. So I will ask (since you haven't gotten enough questions yet :wink: ), how much were you able to ride (upper, lower, whatever)? Looks as bony as expected. Glad you played it safe.


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