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2011 Backcountry Trip Reports => April 2011 Backcountry Trip Reports => Topic started by: Kyle Miller on 04/26/11, 05:32 PM



Title: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Kyle Miller on 04/26/11, 05:32 PM
Jason Hummel and myself went out to Holden for 5 days where we were able to make some rather fun descents.

The first was Fernows NW apron via a summit ridge couloir we aptly named the "Infernow Couloir" and were treated to shin deep pow for 4500 feet.

There was a little bit of climbing
(http://i565.photobucket.com/albums/ss95/Kylemiller411/Fernow1.jpg)

and a whole lot of snowboarding
(http://i565.photobucket.com/albums/ss95/Kylemiller411/Fernow2.jpg)

Two days later we focused our attention on Bonanzas East face and true summit headwall. With a four A.M. start time we skinned up to the base of the headwall under partly cloudy skies. From there we bootpacked up waist deep pow to the summit ridge. It was a tad bit intense.

More climbing
(http://i565.photobucket.com/albums/ss95/Kylemiller411/Bonanza1.jpg)

and even more snowboarding
(http://i565.photobucket.com/albums/ss95/Kylemiller411/Bonanza2.jpg)

Here's a link to the full story (http://blog.firstascent.com/2011/04/26/kyle-miller-reaches-new-lines-on-mt-fernow-and-bonanza-peak-copes-with-personal-loss/)

Thanks Jason I had a great time!


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Salal on 04/26/11, 05:42 PM
Very nice work guys! Sorry to hear of your loss Kyle...the mountains are a good place to heal.


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: swaterfall on 04/26/11, 05:50 PM
Nice work dudes!


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Marcus on 04/26/11, 07:14 PM
So sorry for your loss Kyle -- I hope Bonanza was good for your head and I'm impressed you rallied to do it after news like that.  Thanks for sharing the story.


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: glenn_b on 04/26/11, 09:19 PM
I'm so sorry for your loss, Kyle.  Condolences to all. 

Three 9k peaks in a week, are you guys on some sort of mission?  Having scrambled the route on Bonanza dry, it's amazing to see how it is now.  Congratulations!  Y'all be carefull out there.  Nice pics, Jason!


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Lowell_Skoog on 04/26/11, 09:27 PM
Condolences on the loss of your father, Kyle. I still miss my dad, and it's been 34 years.

I thought you and Jason might appreciate this picture of your route. I took it during a ski trip in 2000.

(http://alpenglow.org/misc/2011/0918-179-Bonanza-Peak.jpg)

For a while after I took this picture, I thought I wanted to ski the summit pyramid of Bonanza. But I lost interest in that kind of skiing after my brother Carl died. I've been holding onto this picture until somebody else did it. Now's the time...


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Zap on 04/26/11, 10:11 PM
Kyle, sorry for your loss.

All my ski trips to Holden have been a mixture of weather.  The village is a perfect location for ski touring adventures. I remember touring into lower Copper Creek basin and crossing numerous avy debris paths.  I still remember looking at the upper terrain where you and Jason ventured. WOW.

Jason's images are beautiful.  Lowell's photo provides a nice perspective of the objective.



Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Lowell_Skoog on 04/27/11, 08:11 AM
For the record it should be noted that Phil Fortier (accompanied by Dave Coleman) skied the North Face of Mt Fernow in July 2007. Phil's descent started at the top of the apron (below the final couloir) and he didn't tag the summit, so it wasn't as complete as your descent. It was reported in NWMJ #5 here:

http://mountaineers.org/NWMJ/08/081_Shorts3.html#r3

Did you tag the summit on Bonanza? How far from the summit did you start your descent? I did a winter ascent of Bonanza Peak with Mark Bebie and my brother Gordy in December 1979. We topped the face at a little notch (or shoulder) that is visible in my picture. From there we belayed a pitch over some rocks (also visible in the picture) and scrambled to the top. We made one rappel during the descent, then downclimbed the face.


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: jwplotz on 04/27/11, 08:50 AM
Outstanding on all levels!


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Jason_H. on 04/27/11, 09:34 AM
Quote from: Lowell_Skoog on 04/27/11, 08:11 AM
For the record it should be noted that Phil Fortier (accompanied by Dave Coleman) skied the North Face of Mt Fernow in July 2007. Phil's descent started at the top of the apron (below the final couloir) and he didn't tag the summit, so it wasn't as complete as your descent. It was reported in NWMJ #5 here:

http://mountaineers.org/NWMJ/08/081_Shorts3.html#r3

Did you tag the summit on Bonanza? How far from the summit did you start your descent? I did a winter ascent of Bonanza Peak with Mark Bebie and my brother Gordy in December 1979. We topped the face at a little notch (or shoulder) that is visible in my picture. From there we belayed a pitch over some rocks (also visible in the picture) and scrambled to the top. We made one rappel during the descent, then downclimbed the face.



Thanks Lowell.

Here's the route on a Scurlock image.

(http://cascadecrusades.org/SkiMountaineering/bonanza/eastfacebonanzaapril2011/scurlockimagebonanzaneface.jpg)

...although I was able to bend around the corner, up the ridge next to rock. Here's an image a few turns below my high point...looking down at the notch.

[img width=532 height=800]http://cascadecrusades.org/SkiMountaineering/bonanza/eastfacebonanzaapril2011/_JLH7705.jpg[/img]


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Marcus on 04/27/11, 09:36 AM
Wow Jason -- that last shot... Gorgeous.  Was that a pretty wide angle lens, or is that ridge really that narrow?


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Snow Bell on 04/27/11, 09:39 AM
Top shelf stuff gentlemen.

Great write up Kyle and fantastic photos as always Jason.

Here's to many more big adventures and safe returns.


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: ryanl on 04/27/11, 09:49 AM
Great trip Kyle and Jason.

Kyle, I hope you find peace with your loss. I feel for you...



Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: gregL on 04/27/11, 10:36 AM
Sorry for you loss, Kyle, but thanks for the great write up.
Quote from: Marcus on 04/27/11, 09:36 AM
Wow Jason -- that last shot... Gorgeous.


2nd on that, Jason!


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Gregg_C on 04/27/11, 11:24 AM
Stunning....and not just the pictures.


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: trees4me on 04/27/11, 03:17 PM
Wow, that's an incredible trip!  The report and pics are amazing.

Kyle, I wish you all the best vibes in dealing with your loss. 


So any more pics or details about the top of Fernow?  I'm trying to figure out which couloir is Inferno on the map...  That's sooo far to get into.  Way to go!


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: philfort on 04/27/11, 06:38 PM
I'm guessing it's the one at the top of this picture:
http://www.pbase.com/nolock/image/35673114
that connects the apron with the summit ridge?


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Kyle Miller on 04/28/11, 05:08 AM
Thank you for the kind responses they are truly appreciated.

Lowell that photo is amazing.


Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: kath on 04/28/11, 08:06 AM
not exactly news to me now .. having already read your's and jace's great reports and drooled over all of j's awesome photos .. but this trip still blows me away dude ... you know how i feel about your loss .. and not exactly stellar weather either .. way to get out there guys and get er done in spite of all the hardships! can't wait for the next edition .. be safe as always



Title: Re: Bonanza and Fernow April 13- 18
Post by: Mtraslin on 04/28/11, 08:49 PM
Good one!

Thanks for sharing....Looks awesome out there!


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