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Author Topic: December 2,2011 Rock Mountain  (Read 3110 times)
jtack
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December 2,2011 Rock Mountain
« on: 12/03/11, 05:33 PM »

We three would not believe the very reliable reports that the snow conditions on Rock Mountain were not all that great, so 04:30 found us at the park and ride for the drive from Wenatchee to the trail head. The plan; to make a grand loop to include Rock, Howard, and Mastiff and ski out via the Merritt Lake trail.  The warm conditions of last weekend had made a crusted boot tracked, ski cut, snowshoed mess out of the skin track.  We started out on skins for the first 600, switched to booting for the next 1500 or so, and from there on up the skin track was not too bad.  We were on the summit of Rock in about four hours.  The view over to Howard with it's thin snow made us rethink our plan A, and decide to stick around Rock and try some of the skiing there.  Clouds were rolling across the crest, piling up on the south east side limiting visibility so, our first sample was the NW slope of Rock. We made 1300 feet of turns or so, and decided that was all the sampling we needed.  The west wind had buffed most of the loose snow off, and deposited it windrows, which if you could find were good, if not it was wind pressed and un champagne like.   By the time we were back on the summit of Rock the SE side had cleared of clouds, and we made for some of that side.  The upper reaches of the bowl were a little wind crusted, but the lower down we skied, the better it got until it was very nice.  It was so nice we decided to make another lap, and it was just as good as the first.  There was some talk of another but it was getting later in the day and while we were trying to wish the last 2000 feet into blower, it was not to be.  We made a quick stop to refuel before the terror started, and plunged in.  It was truly a miserable 2000 feet of sun crusted breakable drudgery.  Even my partners, both powerful skiers were given to long sighs at every regroup, me I was given to whimpering.   But of course we made it out just at dark, we happened to bump into a TAY crew, one of which had broken a binding, and was doing a masterful job hacking through the crud with only the toe piece of his Dynafit for support. We managed over 6000 of skiing, some of it was good, but the price of admission was high.


* IMG_3338.JPG (44.57 KB, 800x600 - viewed 1011 times.)

* IMG_3339.JPG (85.08 KB, 600x800 - viewed 1048 times.)

* RockMtn1211-38.JPG (66.59 KB, 800x597 - viewed 1027 times.)
« Last Edit: 12/03/11, 05:39 PM by jtack » Logged
mikerolfs
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Re: December 2,2011 Rock Mountain
« Reply #1 on: 12/03/11, 05:45 PM »

I would suggest that the skiing on the north side was good, and the skiing on the south was great.   The exit... strenuous.   Hightlights:

http://vimeo.com/33075902
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jtack
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Re: December 2,2011 Rock Mountain
« Reply #2 on: 12/04/11, 10:25 AM »

Mike, thanks for posting the video, it's great.
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jwplotz
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Re: December 2,2011 Rock Mountain
« Reply #3 on: 12/04/11, 12:04 PM »

What?!  You didn't return on Saturday for another lap? 

Those were some great looking turns up high.  Wish Scott and I had time to get up there.  Nice video Mike!
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mikerolfs
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Re: December 2,2011 Rock Mountain
« Reply #4 on: 12/04/11, 02:09 PM »

You didn't return on Saturday for another lap? 

My group is 1000' into the crap descent with 1000' of it left and we're talking about whether it would be more efficient to take off our skis and wallow downhill and here comes John with a busted binding.  Before he recognizes any of us, and with a big smile, he says "I'm thinking about another lap".  Grin
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alecapone
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Re: December 2,2011 Rock Mountain
« Reply #5 on: 12/05/11, 07:31 AM »

Neat bumping into you guys up there... or should I say down there?

The last of our group eventually made it out in good spirits. Although he did make the historic first splitbooting decent of Chenney creek.

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scott
jwplotz
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Re: December 2,2011 Rock Mountain
« Reply #6 on: 12/05/11, 11:00 AM »

Neat bumping into you guys up there... or should I say down there?

The last of our group eventually made it out in good spirits. Although he did make the historic first splitbooting decent of Chenney creek.



I just knew it would be a busy day of making history.
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