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Author Topic: 6-16-09, columbia glacier area  (Read 2142 times)
alecapone
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6-16-09, columbia glacier area
« on: 06/17/09, 10:25 AM »

Had a great day spring day out on the Columbia. Waterfalls, wildflowers, and wildlife where everywhere. Left the Blanca lake TH at about 4 am. Hiked snow free until nearly the trails high point. Enjoyed a late sunrise, breakfast, and then descended to the lake. Some snow on the way down, but not worth putting on the ski boots until you get to the lake... or until after you cross the log jam(expect wet feet) The lake doesn't look safe to travel, but I could be wrong.



I was booting the whole way(solid board), but left the hiking shoes on until about 5000'.  Put them in my pack and carried them up for fear that they would be found and thought lost Wink...
Could have went further, but my feet where still wet from the crossing. Boot penetration was minimal for the entire climb, and never need crampons even in soft boots.

Part way up the glacier, I headed up the only continuous snow towards kyes. I thought I seen a sitting glissade path, but it was the belly marks from bears taking a ride. Topped out somewhere above 6'000. Could have went higher but I thought I heard some thunder rumbles coming from around the corner. Turns out it was just rock fall from Columbia.

up ramp..


Decsent was fun. a little bit of sun cups, but soft enough to carve through. Other then a short carry was able to make it back to the 4'000 foot level at the lake.



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scott
Kyle Miller
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Re: 6-16-09, columbia glacier area
« Reply #1 on: 06/17/09, 11:29 AM »

Nice work getting out there
You have to love bushwhacking in the dark.
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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............
Jason_H.
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Re: 6-16-09, columbia glacier area
« Reply #2 on: 06/17/09, 05:42 PM »

Such an awesome area, eh. I can't believe there's a glacier on a mountain like that.
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wolfs
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Re: 6-16-09, columbia glacier area
« Reply #3 on: 06/18/09, 12:16 PM »

Such an awesome area, eh. I can't believe there's a glacier on a mountain like that.
And, it's a glacier that runs north-to-south, facing south into the sun, with there being no glacier on the other, theoretically shadier side of the pass towards Monte Christo town. How weird is that?

Would love to check that area out sometime as a ski. For those that have been in there, question. Maybe getting there earlier (April/May, or maybe even as early as Beckler gate opens) is better, so that you can glide the lake, and get at least a few scratchy turns near Virgin Lake? Or is snow always too unconsolidated then?
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Marcus
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Re: 6-16-09, columbia glacier area
« Reply #4 on: 06/18/09, 01:37 PM »

Nice work bud -- cool area back there.
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ryanl
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Re: 6-16-09, columbia glacier area
« Reply #5 on: 06/18/09, 05:16 PM »

And, it's a glacier that runs north-to-south, facing south into the sun, with

Would love to check that area out sometime as a ski. For those that have been in there, question. Maybe getting there earlier (April/May, or maybe even as early as Beckler gate opens) is better, so that you can glide the lake, and get at least a few scratchy turns near Virgin Lake? Or is snow always too unconsolidated then?


It's way easier earlier in the year, although I bet the mixture of wildflowers and wildlife that ale_capone saw would make a little extra effort worth it. They plowed the beckler rd to within 3 miles of the trailhead for most of this past winter.
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