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| | |-+  December 27, 2012, Source Lake Valley
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Author Topic: December 27, 2012, Source Lake Valley  (Read 1915 times)

Posts: 45

December 27, 2012, Source Lake Valley
« on: 12/27/12, 04:51 PM »

Erik, Alex and I were going to do the Chair Peak circumnavigation but got up to the first pass heading down to Snow Lake and visibility was poor and there was some concern about wind loading on the other side.  While we were skinning up Martin Volken and partner came down the skin track, deciding not to drop in on the other side.  Another good sign that we should change plans...

We skied down to Source lake through good powder in light trees and decided to go up and check out Bryant Couloir.  Skinning through the three or so big trees near the top was a little spicy with cliffs below so we booted a short section.  Upon arriving at the top of the couloir, viz was really low.  We pulled skins in silence awaiting the unknown stability of the slope and the decision of who would go first and do a ski cut.  Alex saddled up and found great powder that was only marginally sluffing but manageable.  He stopped below the choke to give Erik (the guy with the airbag pack Wink a chance for fresh tracks.  We all experienced great, stable snow and had a great time skiing all the way to the lake.

Good day in the mountains!  I didn't have a camera so hopefully Erik and Alex will add photos.
Alex Ford

Posts: 10

Re: December 27, 2012, Source Lake Valley
« Reply #1 on: 12/29/12, 08:15 AM »

Definitely a great day in the hills, it was a treat to land first tracks in the Bryant with you guys.

(Edit, defeated by upload, posting a flickr link.)
« Last Edit: 12/30/12, 11:23 AM by Alex Ford » Logged

Posts: 93

Re: December 27, 2012, Source Lake Valley
« Reply #2 on: 12/30/12, 07:51 AM »

Three of us followed you guys up on Friday (the 28th).  Was a stellar day out - The full moon and stars, and then the sun was out and shining from the start.  We carried on beyond the notch in the East Ridge of Chair and stomped on some steep slopes to test stability and dug a pit under the North Face of Chair.  The storm layer 6" - 12" down was very well bonded so we skied first tracks down to Snow Lakes.  There is now a "min" glacier forming at the West end of Snow Lakes, which is super cool -- definitely blue ice as it's been there a couple of years now and it is forming at cave where it meets the lake!

Given the sunshine and good snow, we decided to do the circumnav and carried on around to climb up and over to Melakwa Lake and then climbed up and through the Bryant Couloir where we met up with your tracks partway down.  On slopes steeper than 45 degrees, the storm snow had released in several spots along the tour, but never stepped down. 

Oddly, folks skiing at Alpental and Snoqualmie Pass were largely in fog and cloud all day.  The Alpental Valley fog was flowing over the Snow Lake Divide all day long, but we stayed in the sun until half way down Bryant.  Car to car in about 7:30, which is faster than I was expecting.

Looks like we wont see any new snow for about a week.
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