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NWAC Avalanche
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| |-+  March 2005 Backcountry Trip Reports
| | |-+  March 13, 2005, Silver Basin,Crystal
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Author Topic: March 13, 2005, Silver Basin,Crystal  (Read 3491 times)

Posts: 2489

March 13, 2005, Silver Basin,Crystal
« on: 03/14/05, 05:53 AM »

Spent the weekend at Crystal in an avy instructor course and spent part of our field trip near Silver Basin.  The ski area is quite brown. Iceberg gulch is bare and most sun exposed slopes even near the top of Rex are brown.  Silver Basin/Three Way Basin have sufficient coverage for touring.  Consistent patches of snow can be linked about half way up chair 4 so you  can start skinning.  The coverage is adequate in the open areas but intermittent in the trees. By the time our field trip ended about 3pm the snow had already started to refreeze so we just skidded down the patches and hiked to the base.  

After spending the weekend at Crystal and reading the recent trip reports locally, we're leaving for the Sierras.


Posts: 386

Re: March 13, 2005, Silver Basin,Crystal
« Reply #1 on: 03/14/05, 06:17 AM »

we were there Sat, but it was too embarassing to post a TR. Glad you beat me to it. We climbed up to top of Silver Basin by way of quicksilver lift. I couldn't believe how hard the snow/ice patches were under the lift. Continuous snow just below the lift. Nasty crust and thigh deep frozen mush underneath on slope to top of Silver Basin. We spent a lot of time at the top complaining about the lack of snow and enjoying the sun before deciding what to do next. We had originally intended to traverse to Sheep Lake Basin and back, but the many brown patches of the good south facing slopes put a damper on our enthusiasm. I managed to talk Brenda and Frank to at least hike down the bare grass slope over to the low saddle to check out the run down to Placer Creek. We arrived to a patchy, unskiable slope. Took another extended break and headed back. The ski down the crusty Silver Basin was a bit of a challenge, but we traversed far skiers left to get decent turns where the sun had done its job. Call this trip a good workout.

Mike Metz
ron j
TAY Moderator

Posts: 2602

Re: March 13, 2005, Silver Basin,Crystal
« Reply #2 on: 03/14/05, 07:16 AM »

Thanks to you both, Zap and Mike.
It's good to know what's going on in that area, coverage wise.

"When I stop having fun I'm turnin' around"
"Prediction is very difficult, especially if it's about the future." - Niels Bohr
"If a given person makes it a priority not to die in an avalanche, he or she stands a very good chance of living a long, happy life in the mountains." - Jill Fredston

Posts: 617

Re: March 13, 2005, Silver Basin,Crystal
« Reply #3 on: 03/14/05, 10:54 AM »

From the TR information above, it certainly sounds like we will be have to postpone our "Annual Crystal BC SkiFest" until next year. Also looks like the "Sourdough Chute Fest" will be put to rest until next year too.  Angry  Angry Ron, Jerry, and I had talked about the Crystal SkiFest earlier in the season, but the snow has been so sketchy, that the idea this year hadn't gotten any further than just talking about it.  We'll see what happens next season, and might be able to pull both of those off again. Once the Steven's Canyon road at Paradise opens, we'll check out the "Slush Cup" spot and see what fun we can have there.   Cheesy

There is nothing worse than refusing to learn: this is where old age begins.

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