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The 2011-12 Colorado Ice Conditions Thread
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By Colorado Mountain School
Nov 22, 2011
One of our guides was up in the Park on Sunday.

He climbed Deep Freeze via the NW gully on Thatchtop. The first pitch of DF was filled with snow. The upper two piches were "in". His partner lead the crack/pillar crux, finding out that it was hard and kind of runout.

He was guessing that there was 8-12" of new snow up there as compared to Friday. Which meant deeper drifts, and isolated wind slabs. He said he had to do some serious wallowing to get up to the base of the ice this morning.

Several parties climbing in Loch Vale Gorge and presumably in Glacier Gorge as well.

With this snow and wind, seems as though the avy danger has started to turn the corner a bit into winter mode. Not just snow on talus anymore.

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By J. Fox
From Black Hawk, CO
Nov 22, 2011
Me too!
I tried to get into Glacier Gorge on Saturday, 11/19 during the storm....made it to Mills Lake before retreating. Here's a shot of AMU:
AMU (hidden in the clouds above the visible ridge)...
AMU (hidden in the clouds above the visible ridge) on 11/19/2011.

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By Kevin Landolt
From Fort Collins, Wyoming
Nov 22, 2011
Wow - Thanks for that very informative photo of AMU, you've done the community a tremendous service!

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By Kevin Craig
Nov 22, 2011
KC on Fields (medium).  Photo (c) Doug Shepherd
Kevin Landolt wrote:
Wow - Thanks for that very informative photo of AMU, you've done the community a tremendous service!


Dude, you're starting to sound like me! Must be the name! :oD

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By Tom Willard
From Avon, CO
Nov 23, 2011
Hitchhiking in Arches
Vail Ice Update

Fire House
Fire House

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By Colorado Mountain School
Nov 23, 2011
An update from one of our guides...
He went and did Deep Freeze yesterday in nuclear winds. He said it was hard to stand at times. Pretty much no wallowing at all to the base, seems like the winds have stripped lots of the snow.

They climbed a long mixed pitch to the left of the usual first pitch (which is not in) then some scrambling up to the catwalk. No snow really all the way to the Deep Freeze gully. Good easy snow/ice to the start of the 2nd pitch. Also, there is no longer a fixed #1 camalot on the crux pitch.

Looked like the routes in LV are coming in nicely as well.

Pitch 2.
Pitch 2.



Pitch 3.
Pitch 3.

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By Dave Cummings
From Grand Junction, CO
Nov 24, 2011
me on my redpoint
Climbed Campground Couloir in South Mineral Creek in Silverton today. The climb was in great shape and the road had a small amount of snow on it allowing us to park right under the climb. Great route!

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By funkyicemonkey
From Colorado
Nov 25, 2011
I was at Firehouse Vail, again yesterday afternoon and the warm temps have not helped. I did solo West Slabs, but the top was running with water and almost bare. The freestanding pillar to the right was looking very weak, chandeleery and pock-marked. However on the positive side the walls all had lots of new seepage lines I had not seen before from the snow melt. Im thinking that conditions currently favor the night or morning and a delicate touch.

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By Ross
From Pinewood Springs
Nov 26, 2011
Biker Fun
The trail going to Black Lake is blocked with downed trees from the wind storm they had on the 12NOV.

Steve and I tried to get past the downed trees today 26NOV to climb at West Gully & Stoneman but turned back after an hour of wandering thru the wreckage.

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By gravityneverrests
From Lakewood, CO
Nov 26, 2011
Climbed North Face Notchtop yesterday. Fairly typical ice conditions for the last few years. Attached is a photo of the face and a short slide show on the day. Was in Vail last week - Pumphouse and Spiral are already hacked out and stepped even as small as they are this early. Doesn't bode well for getting them to fully form up (yea, I know, I was climbing on them too). Two weeks ago I was at Black Lake and the West Gully and Stoneman were great - Stoneman is about as big as I have ever been on it. The slabs were in but slightly on the thin side from what I could see.
North Face.
North Face.

s173.photobucket.com/albums/w4...

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By Dave Cummings
From Grand Junction, CO
Nov 27, 2011
me on my redpoint
Direct North Face in South Mineral Creek was in great shape today. A lot of people were climbing in South Mineral Creek today. I heard that Stairway to Heaven had some big sluffs come down and hit some climbers. I heard everyone was ok but it was a scary day up there.

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By Noah8000
From Vail, CO
Nov 27, 2011
The transfer to ice...in this case a horizontal, w...
Definately be ready for a pretty spicy runout without the fixed #1 at the crux of Deep Freeze, that's for sure. Scary but wildly awesome. Some other things are in around that area but I'll leave the adventure up to you.

RMNP Ice/Mixed.
RMNP Ice/Mixed.

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By Sung
From Denver, CO
Nov 27, 2011
silverplume is not in, very wet and forming, climbed it yesterday 11/26

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By Mike Walley
From Louisville, CO
Nov 27, 2011
Mike on West Gully RMNP
We climbed All Mixed Up yesterday in great "Winter like" conditions. The ice offered many options. It was 6 degrees at the start of the day and didn't warmed up much with the wind. No avalanche conditions seen, but plenty of new snow. We broke trail for anyone lucky enough to follow in our footsteps before the wind covers them. First pitch is thin and dinner-plating, but takes short screws. The second pitch on the left required Alan to use some rock gear on mixed. The third pitch was thick WI 4.
All Mixed Up on November 26, 2011.
All Mixed Up on November 26, 2011.


Climbers on the first pitch of All Mixed Up in the...
Climbers on the first pitch of All Mixed Up in the wind.

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By ozman
From CO / NM
Nov 28, 2011
Thrill is Gone
Wolf Creek: Remus, Solo Romo and Sheeps clothing are all in. Alpha Male is FAT. Didn't see much climbable ice on the north side of the pass.

Vail: Rigid Designator climbed well. The fang fell out late last week but as of yesterday had about 25 ft gap that it was trying to close. Other climbs in the area looked pretty good too.

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By J. Fox
From Black Hawk, CO
Nov 28, 2011
Me too!
Kevin Landolt wrote:
Wow - Thanks for that very informative photo of AMU, you've done the community a tremendous service!


Yer welcome!

FLAG
 
By Jay Karst
From Golden
Nov 29, 2011
Me
DNF was really wet even though it was 17 degrees.

Mineral Creek DNF money pitch.
Mineral Creek DNF money pitch.


Rock gear and 2 stubbies if yer lucky on P1

P1 of the Ribbon 11/26 "TBI".
P1 of the Ribbon 11/26 "TBI".

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By Tony T.
From Denver, CO
Nov 30, 2011
Getting up the Great Dihedral on Hallet Peak, RMNP...
Not sure if anyone is interested, but the falls above Peacock Lake on Long's look very blue and very in. I took my partner up for her first view of the Diamond about a week ago (11/23) and was salivating at the ice. Incidentally, the ice flow below my chin started to form up. Please only use passive pro on me. =p

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By Dave Cummings
From Grand Junction, CO
Dec 1, 2011
me on my redpoint
Can you TR the Rigid Designator in Vail with a 70M? I know a 60M won't reach

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By Buff Johnson
Dec 1, 2011
smiley face
yes, in the sense that if you led on a 70, you'll be able to lower back down.

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By Dave Cummings
From Grand Junction, CO
Dec 1, 2011
me on my redpoint
Thanks buddy

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By AndyMac
From Center, CO
Dec 1, 2011
ozman wrote:
Wolf Creek: Remus, Solo Romo and Sheeps clothing are all in. Alpha Male is FAT. Didn't see much climbable ice on the north side of the pass.

Thanks ozman! It was over 50 degrees in the San Luis Valley yesterday. Glad to hear there is some stuff that's solid around here.

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By Brian Stefanovic
From Fort Collins, CO
Dec 2, 2011
Just checking if any one knows conditions in RMNP, specifically Martha and Alexander's. Thanks.

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By tharlow
Dec 2, 2011
looking for any info on avacado gully

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By Captain Choss Sauce
From Durango, CO
Dec 2, 2011
Does anyone know if anything has formed in the Hallett Chimney?

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