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| |-+  May 2009 Backcountry Trip Reports
| | |-+  May 24-26, 2009;Royal/Deception Basins(Olympic NP)
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Author Topic: May 24-26, 2009;Royal/Deception Basins(Olympic NP)  (Read 2146 times)
cascadesfreak
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Posts: 366


May 24-26, 2009;Royal/Deception Basins(Olympic NP)
« on: 05/27/09, 11:01 PM »

A long ski haul in was well worth the reward of stellar corn skiing off Hal Foss Peak and second ski run back to camp from the Royal Basin/Deception Basin divide! 

Drew, Cory and I carried skis for about 7 miles in, encountering patchy snow near 4,500-ft.  Mostly continuous snow was found above about 5,000-ft (where we started skinning), past the lower meadow with excellent coverage in upper Royal Basin.  Great views of The Needles and the imposing eastern wall of Mt. Deception from camp.

Awoke before sunrise on Monday morning and climbed to a ~6,600-ft gap to access Deception Basin (stunning vantage point of Mt. Mystery).  Down-hiked and traversed the south slopes beyond the gap into Deception Basin (crampons worked quite well on the shattered shale slope).  The heavily snow-clad northern slope of Hal Foss Peak was an immediate draw from our first glimpse of the mountain from the 6,600-ft gap.  Climbed up firm snow on mostly NE aspects to the top of Hal Foss, taking in the stunning scenery while waiting for the snow to soften.   Began skiing at 10:00, but the north slope was still too icy so stopped on a bench about 150-ft below the summit to give the sun more time to soften the surface.  Perfect corn at 10:30 and a stellar ski line down the north face of Hal Foss Peak!

A fairly quick skin and climb brought us back up to the 6,600-ft col and another fun ski line on a steep NW-facing slope back into Royal Basin and our campsite.  Spent a lazy afternoon basking in the sun at camp. 

Cumulus clouds began building around the peaks in the late afternoon (hmmm, had the forecast for dry weather changed?).  The clouds dissipated and the sky was clear at sunset.  Awoke at about 2:30 in the morning to rain drops pelting my face  Angry [quickly closed up the bivy sack].  Plans to ski in Royal Basin on Tuesday morning were quickly abandoned owing to the turn in the weather.  Soggy hike out of Royal Basin in the rain, but the hike went fast once we reached the melted-out trail.  Fun outing in spite of the unexpectedly rainy finish.


* DSC_2122Cory--HalFossPeak.jpg (88.31 KB, 800x532 - viewed 658 times.)

* DSC_2171Cory-at-col-MountMystery-background.jpg (98.11 KB, 800x532 - viewed 647 times.)

* DSC_2174Drew--dropping-into-RoyalBasin.jpg (73.83 KB, 800x532 - viewed 668 times.)
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telemack
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Re: May 24-26, 2009;Royal/Deception Basins(Olympic NP)
« Reply #1 on: 05/28/09, 11:27 AM »

That's the "dry" side of the Olympics for you!  We had a similar hump last May, but managed to lose the trail both ways.  It's quite a place and you bagged some fine runs. 
How 'bout that no-bridge drive?   Roll Eyes
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There is no cure for birth and death save to enjoy the interval.
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kath
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Re: May 24-26, 2009;Royal/Deception Basins(Olympic NP)
« Reply #2 on: 05/28/09, 04:16 PM »

cool  ... way to go .... i see where we camped last summer at the base of hal foss .. just as i imagined in the snow ... beautiful!!
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cascadesfreak
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Posts: 366


Re: May 24-26, 2009;Royal/Deception Basins(Olympic NP)
« Reply #3 on: 05/29/09, 12:10 PM »

How 'bout that no-bridge drive?   Roll Eyes
  yeah, the drive felt like the biggest "no fall zone" of the trip (some impressive drop-offs along the edge of that narrow forest road).
More trip photos are posted here:

http://picasaweb.google.com/chriscass1/RoyalBasinDeceptionBasinOlympicNationalParkMay24To262009?authkey=Gv1sRgCP-JgO_FwYb5oAE#
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ovrthhills
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Re: May 24-26, 2009;Royal/Deception Basins(Olympic NP)
« Reply #4 on: 05/30/09, 10:38 PM »

Nice trip. Nothing like Olympic corn.
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