Snoq. Pass 02-28-01
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Climbing is dangerous! Every year many climbers are broken, maimed, and killed. Don't be so foolish as to trust your life to what you see here. I'm not a guide and neither is this web site. If you don't know what you are doing or where you are going, please take a course or hire a guide!

Alpental Lift-served Ice Part IV

February 28, 2001

Last day of February, last day on the water ice for the year? Hmmm, we'll see.

Jens and I met after work at the Alpental lot. I needed to work off some angst from a messy job situation. Shameless ad: I'm a computer networking person in the Seattle area. I'm looking for small businesses that need help with their systems. If you know anyone who is looking for a solid, reliable "geek", contact me at the email address below...

So we rode the empty lift up and skied down to the ice. We found it in about the same shape as January 28. I conned Jens into setting up the TR while I excavated a ledge and put a file to my points. He rapped down, I put him on belay, and he took a lap on the "main" line. The ice on the slab was Cascade munge, but it got pretty interesting up above. Thicker ice under the tree forced him to swing onto the large, incomplete pillar from the top ledge. It was fun watching.

I lowered him off and took a lap. The move from the ledge onto the pillar was stout, including a wild move where my feet swung in the air under me as I transitioned into it. Lots of fun...on a top rope.

We flipped one end of the rope over the mushroom and Jens launched up the right-hand side, which we hadn't completed this year. Our increased strength, skill, and sense of what is possible showed, as he moved through a section that we'd written off as "unclimable" just a short time ago.

I started up, moving on bad sticks that I would never trust on lead, and found a limit when both tools blew down low. I got back on and flashed up the pitch. A few mixed moves allowed me to get high enough to get sticks higher on the delicate pillar. From there I whooped and hollered as I made delicate, but strenuous moves on the thin, freestanding pillar.

It was so fun that we each took another lap on it, both finding it easier than the first time. It is remarkable to me how my sense of what is possible limits me on ice.

We then each took another lap on the left, main line, and then Jens graciously climbed it a third time to retrieve the gear.

By the way, the blue sling on the little tree at the top is mine. The locking biner on the sling is Jens'. I left them there inadvertently earlier this year and would like them back when they melt out.

Jens working the "right" line during an outing earlier in the year. We found the ice today in remarkably similar condition.

The "Main" line, also from an earlier outing.


This page was last edited on Wednesday, February 23, 2005
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