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| | |-+  April 6, 2012, Whitehorse Mtn, "Whiteout Glacier"
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Author Topic: April 6, 2012, Whitehorse Mtn, "Whiteout Glacier"  (Read 3705 times)
Lowell_Skoog
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April 6, 2012, Whitehorse Mtn, "Whiteout Glacier"
« on: 04/08/12, 09:46 AM »

Initially I posted some pictures on Forest's thread, but decided I should start a different thread. Thanks for the trip report, Forest!

Our group skied the north glacier route on Friday and had a cloudier day, I think.  Weather during the descent made our run the "Whiteout Glacier" at times.

We descended the ascent route (climbers' left, skiers' right). This worked better than expected and we were able to go from the summit to the bottom of the Snow Gulch without taking our skis off. Some interesting traversing and side-slipping through the brush that bypasses the lower cliffs. That section probably won't be "skiable" for long. A few pictures:

Fifteen-foot wall-to-wall avalanche crown near High Pass:



Below the free-standing crown wall on the divide between the Snow Gulch and Wellman Basin. (Thinner than it was tall, the wall was formed when both the Snow Gulch and Wellman Basin slopes released simultaneously and slid in opposite directions):



In the Snow Gulch, at about the point where we took our skis off:



Old mine tunnel at the end of the abandoned road:



Cascade rainforest along the road:



As Forest said, the price of admission is high on this route. I suspect that it's always "wet and scrappy" getting up there.
« Last Edit: 04/08/12, 12:54 PM by Lowell_Skoog » Logged
cchapin
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Re: April 6, 2012, Whitehorse Mtn, "Whiteout Glacier"
« Reply #1 on: 04/08/12, 10:19 AM »

Did you go up and down east of Snow Gulch?  How did you cross it down low?

Sounds like Forest was west of the creek...

Appreciate the trip reports.  I've been wanting to do Whitehorse for a while but had only ever thought about the climbers route through Lone Tree Pass.

Edit: Just read Beckey and believe that you were east of Snow Gulch.
« Last Edit: 04/08/12, 10:34 AM by cchapin » Logged
Stugie
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Re: April 6, 2012, Whitehorse Mtn, "Whiteout Glacier"
« Reply #2 on: 04/08/12, 11:30 AM »

Nice trip report Lowell.  Great pics too!  I still can't believe that crown...that would have been an incredible sight to witness from afar.  We hit Mazama a few weekends ago and brought back some good times of touring! Wink  Whitehorse is still on the tick list, however, I'm guessing it'll be yet another year wait!  Way to nail it.
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"The mountains are not stadiums where I satisfy my ambition to achieve, they are the cathedrals; the houses where I practice my religion." - Anatoli Boukreev
Lowell_Skoog
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Re: April 6, 2012, Whitehorse Mtn, "Whiteout Glacier"
« Reply #3 on: 04/08/12, 12:49 PM »

Did you go up and down east of Snow Gulch?  How did you cross it down low?

Sounds like Forest was west of the creek...

Appreciate the trip reports.  I've been wanting to do Whitehorse for a while but had only ever thought about the climbers route through Lone Tree Pass.

Edit: Just read Beckey and believe that you were east of Snow Gulch.

Crossing the Snow Gulch was no problem because it was deeply filled with avalanche debris. I think that's typical.

We descended the east side of the basin (the ascent route for both parties) and Forest's group descended the west side.

Lone Tree Pass is the conventional route for skiing Whitehorse. It was listed in Rainer Burgdorfer's 1986 and 1999 guidebooks. The north glacier is an "adventure" route that's only suitable in cold, stable conditions. On a warm spring day it could get pretty spooky up there.
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kath
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Re: April 6, 2012, Whitehorse Mtn, "Whiteout Glacier"
« Reply #4 on: 04/08/12, 03:02 PM »

awesome .. your pix are stunning
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trees4me
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Re: April 6, 2012, Whitehorse Mtn, "Whiteout Glacier"
« Reply #5 on: 04/08/12, 04:45 PM »

Thanks for the TR.   I've been really curious about the snow gulch route as it appears to be a better ski route than high pass, but it's tough to find much intel on it that makes it sound very appealing.

cool trip.
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chill people, skiing is fun
bigeo
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Re: April 6, 2012, Whitehorse Mtn, "Whiteout Glacier"
« Reply #6 on: 04/09/12, 09:14 AM »

When we skied WH a few years ago, there didn't look to be any reasonable way to go up snow gulch, left, right or center. Instead, we ascended a gully climbers' right of the gulch. It was also filled with avy debris at the bottom. We were able to climb out of the gully (2,700' is what I remember) and do a level traverse on the rib/shoulder into the basin, above the cliffs.
Last Spring when we attempted, we were able to attain the basin by going up the main gulch trending climbers' right. Lots branch and root pulling and trying to get purchase on steep slopes with thin snow covering. When we got above the cliffs, we were turned back by multiple wet snow slides sending "rivers" down our way.
I'm one for four on WH ski attempts, but, when it works, its worth the effort.
« Last Edit: 04/19/12, 09:47 AM by bigeo » Logged
ebeam
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Re: April 6, 2012, Whitehorse Mtn, "Whiteout Glacier"
« Reply #7 on: 04/10/12, 08:04 AM »

Busy place last week. Nice pictures Lowell. Your tracks on Saturday were visible but quite filled in due to a bit of new and/or wind deposit.

Our strategy route-wise - ascend climber’s left (east side) and descend skier’s left (west side) to avoid being exposed to slopes heated by the sun as it moves from east to west throughout the day. Skiing was fun winter snow about 2/3rds the way down, then progressively more wet and mushy. A 200 vf bush belay ski/slide put us on the avy debris with skis still on. The bush belay section will totally suck with much less snow.
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