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| | |-+  July 12, 2004, Nisqually chute
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Author Topic: July 12, 2004, Nisqually chute  (Read 3371 times)
GregSimon
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Posts: 133


July 12, 2004, Nisqually chute
« on: 07/12/04, 03:24 AM »

My boy Zach had other plans, but friend Dave and I headed up Sunday for one more run at the main Nisqually chute.  We left Paradise parking lot at about 9:20.  Some low clouds and refreshingly cool.  The melt-out was remarkable compared to 3 weeks ago - almost no snow visible from the parking lot.  We headed up the main highway and didn't reach continuous snow til Pebble Creek.  The Muir Snowfield proper was pretty suncupped and nearly covered with boot tracks - not the most attractive skiing.  We topped out at about 9000' at about 1:15, a nice leisurely pace.  Ran in to a couple of other TAY posters on the way up.  The entry to the main chute was badly suncupped and lumpy.  Dave managed it smoothly, but it was survival skiing for me.  About 100' down, though, it turned very nice.  Surface was smooth (due to frequent sloughing) and conditions were just right (2 to 3 in of soft, but not so soft as to be unstable).  The cooler morning weather kept things from getting too sloppy.  It was "hootin and hollerin" skiing down into the basin.  Some of the low chutes looked nice, but most were not continuous.  They'd be better for booting up from the bottom than for down-climbing from the top.  We toured out through the flats and booted up about 200 feet to reach trail.  But (end of the day bonus) we were able to find various gullies and patches to get continuous snow almost back to the parking lot.  Sure beats walking at the end of the day.  Given the ugly surface conditions on the main snowfield, this route would definitely be my preference.  
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skip
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Re: July 12, 2004, Nisqually chute
« Reply #1 on: 07/12/04, 03:57 AM »

Greg,

Good to meet you yesterday - I have to concur that the upper chute was the best skiing I found yesterday. I caught you and Dave at the base of it:



As for skiing the snowfield, I actually had a great ski down from Camp Muir, save the top 700'.  At Muir, I cut skiers right to the SW edge of the snowfield and found myself quite alone coming down the mountain.  As I say, the top 700' were too cupped out to enjoy, but--on that side of the snowfield--everything below 9250' offered good, virtually untouched turns (I saw just one set of new tracks ahead of me - and those disappeared after some time).  The cups all but disappeared below 8750', offering a long and smooth cruiser to the top of the upper Nisqually chute.  

The key for me was getting away from the herd and following the lower edge of the snowfield.  That's where the fun was hiding.
-s
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GregSimon
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Posts: 133


Re: July 12, 2004, Nisqually chute
« Reply #2 on: 07/12/04, 04:55 AM »

Thanks for the photo!  Most fun we had was below the little cornice to the left - very smooth and baked to perfection.
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TonyM
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Re: July 12, 2004, Nisqually chute
« Reply #3 on: 07/12/04, 04:58 PM »

Greg-  Nice meeting you and Dave yesterday.  It was such a nice day to be out. By any chance did someone drop a velcro ski strap?  Found one just after you guys left, near the top of that small grade.  
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mountains will add years to your life, and life to your years
atacomite
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Re: July 12, 2004, Nisqually chute
« Reply #4 on: 07/13/04, 01:44 AM »

Skip, Greg, and Tony, It was a great day!  Nice to have meet you all.  Skip, the photo is exceptional. Especially those turns mid left!  Thanks  Grin  
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GregSimon
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Re: July 12, 2004, Nisqually chute
« Reply #5 on: 07/13/04, 03:11 AM »

Tony - Good to meet you.  That was me who dropped the ski strap.  Maybe we'll meet up again and I'll get it back.  As the post said, we did find a way to ski most of the way back down - following Skip's tracks.  Greg
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GregSimon
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Re: July 12, 2004, Nisqually chute
« Reply #6 on: 07/29/04, 02:45 AM »

Tony - I got the ski strap you mailed.  Thanks!  Greg
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TonyM
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Posts: 228


Re: July 12, 2004, Nisqually chute
« Reply #7 on: 07/30/04, 12:41 PM »

Greg-  Sitting in hot/humid Singapore in my brothers apartment reading TAY trip reports, trying to think cool.  Glad you got it and see you again someday.
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mountains will add years to your life, and life to your years
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