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+  Turns All Year Trip Reports
|-+  2004 Backcountry Trip Reports
| |-+  Sept.-Oct. 2004 Backcountry Trip Reports
| | |-+  September 4, 2004, Muir
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Author Topic: September 4, 2004, Muir  (Read 4544 times)

Posts: 634

September 4, 2004, Muir
« on: 09/04/04, 04:58 PM »

Wow. The Muir snowfield between 10 and 8K was amazing today. 2-4 inches of late harvest corn nearly completely rehabilitated the nightmare dirty snow beneath. And it was even pretty smooth.
I started early (7 am) and was glad I did for a variety of reasons. Paradise was socked in but early in the morning the mist was light. When I started the fog was starting to look a little blue. And sure enough there was a cloud ceiling that I broke out of briefly at 6.7 and for good at around 7K. Great view of the mountain and nice warm temps once out of the fog.I had most of the trail and climb to myself. And, the snow was at just about perfect softness when I started down at 10:45. There was still skiable snow (w 2 shrt carries) to about 7300, maybe a couple hundred feet above the pebble ck crossing. Saw quite a few other people hauling skis up, including a lot of the twin tip crowd †Grin And on taking skis off above Pebble Ck. the visibility socked right in again, and the mist had become darn close to a rain as I chugged down the hill w goal of returning to the lot by noon.
Go if you can in next couple days before that fresh stuff melts off.
Oh, and BTW saw one of the most amazingly huge bear turds I have ever seen, smack dab in middle of the Alta Vista trail, redolent and bright blue from berries. As if to say, yo tourists, this my turf.
« Last Edit: 09/04/04, 05:32 PM by wolfs » Logged
Jeff Huber

Posts: 771

Re: September 4, 2004, Muir
« Reply #1 on: 09/04/04, 06:00 PM »


Oh, and BTW saw one of the most amazingly huge bear turds I have ever seen, smack dab in middle of the Alta Vista trail, redolent and bright blue from berries.

Sure it wasn't bright blue from say a hikers blue goretex?


Posts: 625

Re: September 4, 2004, Muir
« Reply #2 on: 09/04/04, 06:09 PM »

Hey Wolfs, I saw you skiing down around 11:00 just before I got to the windy zone on the way up. †You definitely timed it right. †Leaving Camp Muir around noon, I hit a solid wall of fog around 8200 ft. and had to pick my way carefully down after that. †That first 1900 feet was probably the nicest September skiing I've seen in four or five years. †Definitely worth dropping whatever you're doing and heading up there.

But...if you were the one headed down early, what happened to prgsmall? †His van was parked at the trailhead (or, at least, one was which fit the description) when I headed out at 8:15; it was still there when I returned at 2:00. †There was also a group of skiers who left the parking lot at 7:30 or so, but I overtook them pretty quickly even with a late start, and none admitted to being prgsmall. †They were the ones you saw headed laboriously uphill carrying twin tips.

I agree that time is of the essence for anyone wanting to take advantage of the recent snowfalls. †Up high on the Muir, the fresh snow is six or eight inches deep and pretty dense, so for the most part it'll probably last a couple of days. †Lower down, say below 9000 feet, there's really just a couple of inches of fresh barely covering old nevť and glacial ice. †It's not going to last long.

Aside from the stupendously fat and roly-poly pikas and squirrels, the most notable natural phenomenon of my day was an albino rainbow which appeared just as I broke out into the sun around 6700 feet. It appeared on the face of the fogbank just behind me: a full arch, only about a hundred yards across at the base by maybe 50 yards high. †The very strange thing was that it was perfectly formed and very bright, although it was tiny and had not a hint of color. †

Since I'd just emerged from the murky light into the morning sun, with all the colors suddenly vibrant and alive, I felt like I'd passed under this shimmering archway into another, more vivid world. †The rainbow got bigger as I walked away from it; I'll leave the geometry to someone else. I've never seen or heard of such a thing, but who knows? †Maybe they're commonplace. †

On the other hand, I missed the giant bear turd completely.  This saddens me terribly, but I'll probably learn to live with it.†
« Last Edit: 09/04/04, 06:10 PM by markharf » Logged

Posts: 1

Re: September 4, 2004, Muir
« Reply #3 on: 09/05/04, 03:40 AM »

Greetings All:

I'm a first time caller, longtime listener. However, yesterday's turns at Muir prompted an awakening from my heretofore mute state. The turns were, in short, PRIMO.  Not in the September please God I'm jonesing- let it be winter soon I'll take any turns sense.  In the real sense. As in, it was the real deal, no shi**, nice turns and "smooth like butta..."  

So we enjoyed the cold mist on our faces on the way up, savoring it for what it was, refreshing, providing an enchanting veil of solitude- and a harbinger of things to come this winter.  We arrived at Muir in time and, despite several naysayers predictions of 40-60mph winds on the way up, broke out at around 9,000 to light winds, warm rocks, and some killa chili corn cheese Fritos.  We lounged like bears in the sun (my partner in crime bearing a striking resemblance to a grizzly, both in appearance and manner) and when the mood struck us- chased your fine rounded arcs down from Muir, added a few interpretations of our own, back into the sheltering arms of that fine cold mist.  

My only regret is that I waited until Sunday morning to write this, past the window of opportunity for other working stiffs to make the trip down to Muir to enjoy Nature's bounty. Cool

Re: September 4, 2004, Muir
« Reply #4 on: 09/05/04, 04:36 AM »

A friend and I had a later start. We saw our descending first skier at about 11:00.  Was that Wolfs in the yellow t-shirt?  We broke out of the cloud deck at about 8,000 feet.  Conditions were fine until the gusts kicked in at about 8,800 feet.  We were doing the four point stance for several of these blasts. I am sure that most of these were in the 40-50 mph range and one must have approached 70.  (It sure keeps the idlers away.)  The wind was quickly redepositing the corn.

We descended from still sunny Muir at about 3:00 p.m.  As we were regarding the summit routes, the blue sky over the summit shifted in minutes to a rippling, writhing cloud cap.  An impressive display that I may have captured on my fritzing camera. The frosting of new snow was great. This was a first outing for a new set of equipment and I could not have asked for better test conditions. 4-8 inches of pliable buttercream. By about 8,500 ft. the pumice sprinkled base was poking through on most aspects. The clouds closed in at about 8,200 and the murk kept us from moving very fast.

I am trying figure out where I can head next Sunday. If the snow level cooperates during the week, this would be worth it.

Posts: 634

Re: September 4, 2004, Muir
« Reply #5 on: 09/05/04, 03:46 PM »

Yeah that was me in yellow. The big turd was on the Alta Vista trail not the main Skyline, which I prefer as a descent at the very bottom because it sees about 10% of the traffic of Skyline.

Posts: 1750

Re: September 4, 2004, Muir
« Reply #6 on: 09/06/04, 03:39 PM »

Turd still not cleaned up by NPS, bear was seen in the basin below on Monday 330PM by ~200 spectators.
« Last Edit: 09/06/04, 03:40 PM by silaswild » Logged
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