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04/24/14, 06:37 AM

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| | |-+  June 26, 2008 Sauk Mountain, not!
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Author Topic: June 26, 2008 Sauk Mountain, not!  (Read 1105 times)
Alan Brunelle
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June 26, 2008 Sauk Mountain, not!
« on: 06/26/08, 08:35 PM »

Well this didn't go....

I didn't get any recent info from TAY'ers regarding conditions for this trip, but the NFS stated that the road was driveable to within 1/4 mile of the parking lot as of last week and I figured things would be more advanced today.  I was looking for little or no snow on the exposed southwest slope switchbacks.  Well the road is not passable from roughly 1/2 mile.

Nick and I made a go of it, but after doing the lower trail switchback traverses I decided that there was enough snow above, that the "hiking" was going to be too exposed for he and I. 

Slope behind Nick


This especially since the trail steepens up high.  Nick has not had any real self arrest practice and the snow conditions, while good for kicking steps, was such that any arrest would be a challenge.  However, once the rockfall started coming down the slope my decision was finalized and it was time to head back down.

We made the best of the situation by having a nice lunch near the parking lot and then yo-yo-ing the slopes above the lot area.  Nice corn, relaxed day.  Because there was good coverage from the slide area covering the last part of the road, we got a decent descent and were able to ski almost to the car.

Nick above the parking lot


Our tracks below Sauk


I hope that these photos illustrate the conditions.  There is a lot of snow covering the road still to within 1/3rd to 1/4 mile of the lot.  There is especially a lot of snow at the lot.

The trail however has only occasional snow patches on it up high and I believe that the upcoming week of warm weather will bring this hike/ski into form.  Burgdorfer describes skiing the approach slope as a technical ski, not recommended.  I think that if it was fully snow covered I would have been more comfortable skiing it than trying to hike it.  There is something about the security of steel edges vs plastic boots.

Once the snow melts on the approach, I believe that the rock fall will be reduced and the hike up will be fine.  We will try to return to this short trip in a week or so.

Alan

« Last Edit: 06/26/08, 08:51 PM by BigSnow » Logged
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