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Author Topic: June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier  (Read 10265 times)
Amar Andalkar
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June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier
« on: 06/07/08, 07:16 PM »

Following Friday's freshies for five at Chinook Pass, two of the crew were motivated enough to seek even more powder on Saturday. The chosen destination: Inter Glacier. We'd just been there a few days earlier and found excellent smooth corn snow conditions (see June 2, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier), but on this day it seemed like a repeat trip would offer the best chance in the whole state of getting both high enough and north-facing enough to ski fresh powder in sunshine.


The Mountain breaks out of the clouds.

After a totally cloudy drive through the lowlands, the first patches of blue sky were seen (as usual) just inside the northeast entrance of the park, and skies continued to clear as we approached White River campground. Trail conditions remained identical to the previous report, with discontinuous snow patches for the first 2 miles up to 5400 ft and continuous snow beyond, although now topped by a few inches of new snow above roughly 5000 ft. The Mountain finally broke through the clouds around 10:30am, and skies generally continued to clear after that.

   
Marmot beside the skin track in Glacier Basin. 
   
Closeup zoomed shot.
   
Marmot burrow in the snow.

Occasionally, clouds would pour into Glacier Basin and produce brief whiteout conditions, but overall the day stayed mostly sunny and fairly windy, with occasional gusts to about 30 mph. The fresh powder had been windblown into a fairly consistent, smooth, wind-packed surface above 7000 ft, with generally denser and wetter snow below that elevation. Winds increased in intensity above 8000 ft, and a large plume of snow was being blown off the summit dome by very strong winds.


Ski tracks in the fresh but wind-packed pow on the Inter Glacier, with the summit dome far above at top center.

By 3:30pm, a fine lenticular cloud had formed atop the Mountain. As we exited the park on SR 410, the sky was once again socked-in with solid clouds, and a few raindrops were soon sprinkling the windshield. Was the northeast-trending rain shadow of Rainier providing the only clear and sunny conditions in western WA today? It was so nice to get out in the blue sky and sunshine and fresh snow.


Mid-afternoon lenticular atop the Mountain, from the White River Road just below the campground.


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altasnob
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Re: June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier
« Reply #1 on: 06/07/08, 07:59 PM »

Definitely the place to be today. Chinook was socked in. Saw the sun up by Inter Glacier on the drive down and started kicking myself, hard.
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skierlyles
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Re: June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier
« Reply #2 on: 06/07/08, 09:35 PM »

Way to rub it in Amar- I believe that your report is going to be the only one with no pea soup on the menu. I cannot believe how nice a day you all had out there. I hope to get up there soon as the getting seems to be really good now. Any signs of crevasses poking thru?

Chris
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Amar Andalkar
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Re: June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier
« Reply #3 on: 06/07/08, 11:45 PM »

Not trying to rub it in, Chris, just give some useful info. Cheesy  Looks like Joedabaker also found blue skies from the same rain shadow at Crystal.

I saw no crevasses anywhere on the Inter Glacier, either Monday or Saturday.


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andyski
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Re: June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier
« Reply #4 on: 06/08/08, 09:09 AM »

Was sunny above 9k or so on Muir, but that still left about 4k of the descent in...well, you know Cry
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prestonf
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Re: June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier
« Reply #5 on: 06/08/08, 01:09 PM »

I saw no crevasses anywhere on the Inter Glacier, either Monday or Saturday.

FWIW there are some small ones poking through behind the shark fin in the picture of your ski tracks.  Can't miss 'em.


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Amar Andalkar
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Re: June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier
« Reply #6 on: 06/08/08, 01:49 PM »

FWIW there are some small ones poking through behind the shark fin in the picture of your ski tracks.  Can't miss 'em.

Thanks for the good info. But you can miss 'em, here's how: There was no way to see more than 20-50 ft off the bootpack in the whiteout on Monday, which was totally dense from 8000-9000 ft (with good visibility above and below that). On Saturday, my high point was beside the fin, at about 8200-8300 ft, so I never got high enough to see that crevasse. The crevasse is at about 8400 ft based on Stugie's trip report.

A good lesson on taking all info in trip reports with a grain of salt.


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Kyle Miller
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Re: June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier
« Reply #7 on: 06/08/08, 02:06 PM »

If im correct I think we talked to your teammate at the base of Mt Ruth while we were rehydrating. She mentioned the winds up there were rather strong so you guys had turned around. The winds were brutal near the top of steamboat prow almost knocking me over multiple times.
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In a perfect world, everybody would act with the correct etiquette and follow the rules. Human nature as it is= NOT GOING TO HAPPEN....no matter how many discussion on ski blogs/websites. Face reality............
skierlyles
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Re: June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier
« Reply #8 on: 06/08/08, 02:15 PM »

Not trying to rub it in, Chris, just give some useful info. Cheesy  Looks like Joedabaker also found blue skies from the same rain shadow at Crystal.

I saw no crevasses anywhere on the Inter Glacier, either Monday or Saturday.




I appreciate the usefulness of all of your posts, just giving you a hard time for getting it right! I have duly noted this "rain shadow" effect and hope to be able to actually take advantage of it soon.Being relatively new to the PNW I had heard of it, but thought there was no way anyone was escaping the system pushing thru. I guess they are right when they say, "the mountains make their own weather".

Chris
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a_clark
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Re: June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier
« Reply #9 on: 06/09/08, 08:32 AM »

Thanks for the post. It convinced me to give it a go on Sunday. Skiied from the top of Steamboat Prow with blue skies, little wind and nice snow.
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AndyMartin
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Re: June 7, 2008, Mt Rainier, Inter Glacier
« Reply #10 on: 06/09/08, 08:07 PM »

Nice to meet you up there Adam! Thanks for the great skin track to all the Saturday skiers too.
That was a super fun June outing.
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