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| |-+  May 2009 Backcountry Trip Reports
| | |-+  May 24, 2009, Steamboat Prow
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Author Topic: May 24, 2009, Steamboat Prow  (Read 2190 times)

Posts: 7

May 24, 2009, Steamboat Prow
« on: 05/25/09, 12:55 PM »

Seven of us headed out of the White River campground around 8:30am, five on skis and 2 on snowshoes.  We skinned from the parking lot but then soon realized that it wasn't going to be so easy.  Many sections of the trail have been washed out by the creek and snow coverage was spotty.  Skis came off, then back on, then off, back on, etc... for about 2miles to about 5400', where we put the skis back on and were on our way.  It's always amazing to see the power of these "little" creeks.

Hit glacier basin about 10:30am and stopped for a bite.  We spotted a skin track heading towards Mt. Ruth.  A few of commented how that would be a good destination, but the others quickly reminded us that we were heading to Steamboat Prow.  Up the basin we went making the left turn on to Interglacier and straight up.

After a few liters of water later we arrived at our destination around 4:30pm.  We admired the view at the top for about 20 minutes then gathered our things for the ride down as we noticed the surface firming on the way up and not all had headlamps. 

It was semi-breakable crust down to about 8300' where the real sweet corn began.  From the looks of the tracks already there we may have had corn from the top had we been earlier.  Got mushy around 6700', but still good skiing.  We slithered our way back down to about 5400', put the skis on the pack booted our way out.  Arrived at the parking lot about 9pm just before we need to pull out the headlamps.

* Trail_washed_out_by_creek.JPG (145.64 KB, 800x600 - viewed 693 times.)

* St_Elmo_Pass.JPG (113.8 KB, 800x600 - viewed 688 times.)

* Corn_Turn.JPG (125.98 KB, 800x600 - viewed 697 times.)

Posts: 926

Re: May 24, 2009, Steamboat Prow
« Reply #1 on: 05/25/09, 03:16 PM »

Nice slog. looks like a lot of point releases on those E aspects in your picture of the ridge by St. Elmos...did those release while you guys were up there or had they already gone.

"The mountains are not stadiums where I satisfy my ambition to achieve, they are the cathedrals; the houses where I practice my religion." - Anatoli Boukreev

Posts: 7

Re: May 24, 2009, Steamboat Prow
« Reply #2 on: 05/25/09, 04:10 PM »

Some had already gone.  We didn't see anything slide directly, but we had our backs to that view for most of the time.  I might have noticed a few more slides there on the way down than I remember on the approach.  There we a couple point releases off the N-NE slopes of Mt. Ruth.  Could also hear some rocks falling on Mt Ruth, which makes sense with some of the fist size rocks embedded in the snow near there.

Posts: 54

Re: May 24, 2009, Steamboat Prow / Mt Ruth sidebar
« Reply #3 on: 05/27/09, 11:02 PM »

Mt Ruth side bar.  Piggy backing on your post.

We also got a late start out of the White River lot and then got off route about where the river starts to run down the trail.  Our goal was Mt Ruth.  The tracks you saw were probably three skiers ahead us that we didn't over take.  We saw them at the summit and then nothing.  We ascended via a gully further back on the ridge and when we got to the summit we saw they had skied down the broad ledge between rock bands and we suspected down the broad chute in the lower band to the river.  Confirmed by tracks later.  Next time maybe.

We spent too much time basking in the sun and the views on the top watching the hordes on the IG and the top crusted up and the bottom got slushy, so the only decent turns we had were the 1200' in the middle.  But the views were spectacular and the solitude on a busy day was priceless.  Worth a few survival turns and muscling through the mush.

Saw tracks on the Emmons above Camp Schurman, but couldn't track them higher up.
Some pics on Rick's site.
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