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Author Topic: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'  (Read 2682 times)
John Morrow
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Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« on: 02/24/13, 06:02 PM »

Wow, what an incredible snow day!  But, whoa, what an incredibly reactive snowpack in the Arrowhead area this weekend.  More on that below.  On a variety of aspects, for a variety of snowpack circumstances, things were propagating significantly yesterday and today.  The Brothers C and I headed for some safer terrain in the Arrowhead Mountain vicinity and ended on the long NE Ridge of Pt 5909' that I'll call Arrowhead's "little sibling".  Always great when Justin can join Jake and I for a backcountry day.

First observation:  A couple of shallow crowned (12" or less) slides 100 feet across on a NW aspect at 4600 feet in the upper clearcut.  We could not tell the trigger: natural, tree bomb, or skier, from where we were in the flat light.  This slope sees some wind from across the logging unit.

Second:  Thanks to a couple of TAY'ers we got great info on a human triggered slide, Saturday, in one of the long glades of the west slope of Arrowhead.   At about an elevation of 5600, west aspect, it broke a couple hundred feet across (guestimatefrom across valley)  with up to a 24" crown on a older crust.  This slope gets pretty blasted by west winds from time to time.

Third:  This one blew us away.  While safely climbing on top of the NE ridge of Point 5909', at the 5600 foot level where the ridge flattens out we stopped. We peeked in to the steep east facing slopes below at a break in the cornicing.  Smooth, steep (~38 degree start), and beautiful but we knew we weren't even thinking it for today since it can be assumed that it was significantly windloaded.  Prior to that we did a couple pull tests in the skin track edge, similar altitude and aspect.  We got easy movement on two layers, one 18" down and another 6" below that.  It didn't seem like facets, or buried SH, just more like deformed fragments at a density interface (honestly, maybe they were very small, >1mm, facets or buried SH?).  Back on the ridge we were taking a break a few feet back off the edge of the several hundred foot long, level, corniced ridge. I looked back at Jake and Justin and heard them say, "Whoa, did you feel that?  Yeah, like the cornice just collapsed a bit" (the cornice did not break or crack, just a small, invisible settlement).  Then we incidentally looked back over the ridge edge and, wow, the entire slope gave at a 18" to 24" deep crown for many hundred feet across a few feet below the cornice.  All from the sympathetic release of a hardly perceptible settlement on the ridge top.  It was impressive.  We couldn't find a safe entry to see what it ran on. A bit lower down the ridge we dug again and it seemed to run on the 18" deep interface we observed before in the skin track.

The skiing:  Absolutely stellar, top to bottom!   To our pleasant surprise the slightly wind rolled and pillowy ridge skied fantastic in up to 18" of no-fault fluff.  I have never surfed, but I imagined it to be like riding and lifting off these wind roll waves effortlessly and safely!  Then the upper north facing clearcut skied as well in the really deep, un-wind affected, powder.  It was worth a second lap.  It became evident we were almost into March because the snow began to get a bit heavier toward the 4400 foot mark.  Then the lower new logging units (north/NW facing, 3800' to 3200')were fast and fun in consistent wet powder.

Our goal today was to find something safe in the Arrowhead area and this rib line was perfect, albeit, I doubt that it is in such condition all that often.  Pt 5909' is between Arrowhead and Jim Hill.

More pics of the slide and skiing:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/23557848@N03/sets/72157632847096743/


* IMG_1610_1024x768.JPG (85.68 KB, 1000x750 - viewed 1098 times.)

* IMG_1626_1024x768.JPG (149.48 KB, 1000x750 - viewed 1103 times.)

* IMG_1629_1024x768.JPG (120.98 KB, 1000x750 - viewed 1091 times.)
« Last Edit: 02/25/13, 04:09 AM by John Morrow » Logged
z-bo
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #1 on: 02/24/13, 07:17 PM »

Observation 1 and 2 were from me and a buddy yesterday, albeit the upper slide was about 50  feet across.  nothing unmanageable, but the upper mountain kicked us out to lower elevations in the afternoon.  We tickled her softly in the morning , then she gave us the boot.  We put a couple tracks where you Skied.  Amazed there was on evidence.
« Last Edit: 02/24/13, 07:23 PM by z-bo » Logged
all mtn
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #2 on: 02/24/13, 07:25 PM »

quite the avy chutes in the background of the third pic
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John Morrow
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #3 on: 02/24/13, 07:31 PM »

Observation 1 and 2 were from me and a buddy yesterday, albeit the upper slide was about 50  feet across.  nothing unmanageable, but the upper mountain kicked us out to lower elevations in the afternoon.  We tickled her softly in the morning , then she gave us the boot.  We put a couple tracks where you Skied.  Amazed there was on evidence.

Great to meet you two up there today.  Thanks again for the info and discussion.
John
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z-bo
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #4 on: 02/24/13, 07:41 PM »

I wasn't up there today.  Maybe my buddy was.  I can definitely say we were the only ones up there yesterday.
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silaswild
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #5 on: 02/24/13, 07:51 PM »

Pt 5909' that I'll call Arrowhead's "little sibling"
Some of us have called it "the bow"
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Jim Oker
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #6 on: 02/24/13, 11:15 PM »

A few years ago I watched a cornice break off and trigger a slide onto the east slope from a point on the ridge just a bit below the summit, with the cornice fracture a little too close to my ski tips for comfort (I was next to two trees which gave me perhaps too much comfort). Sure grabbed my attention!
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Animal
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #7 on: 02/24/13, 11:32 PM »

Nice TR John!  Yes, we were skiing a bit lower, and the snow on Sunday was thickening up!
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Free the heel free the mind free the soul!
John Morrow
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #8 on: 02/25/13, 06:23 AM »

I wasn't up there today.  Maybe my buddy was.  I can definitely say we were the only ones up there yesterday.

OK, we must have met and talked with your buddy then: splitboader, gets out a bunch.  I guess I didn't realize he had a different partner each day.
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alecapone
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #9 on: 02/25/13, 09:23 AM »

Z-bo's splitboarding buddy better be at home resting his knee!



nice work John. I like Sila's name ' the bow'.
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scott
John Morrow
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #10 on: 02/25/13, 09:43 AM »

Z-bo's splitboarding buddy better be at home resting his knee!



 I like Sila's name ' the bow'.

He sure seemed pretty content on that knee yesterday!
Henceforth, I shall refer to it as "the Bow".  I like that name, and shorter for TR titles, too!
Has anybody else found good conditions on that ridge before, or mostly ski the basin?
J
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carvitto
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #11 on: 02/25/13, 10:15 AM »

Worth noting. Be careful up there!


* Picture_1.png (34.78 KB, 792x206 - viewed 712 times.)
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John Morrow
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #12 on: 02/25/13, 10:37 AM »

Worth noting. Be careful up there!

Seems like those small grains on the planar failures were indeed buried SH, huh.... 
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z-bo
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #13 on: 02/25/13, 12:08 PM »

Z-bo's splitboarding buddy better be at home resting his knee!



nice work John. I like Sila's name ' the bow'.

i like the bow too.  my usual partner is at home resting.  I got out with the profound slut of snow in his absence.  From one ripping splitter to the next.
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John Morrow
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #14 on: 02/26/13, 06:03 AM »

Nice TR John!  Yes, we were skiing a bit lower, and the snow on Sunday was thickening up!

Sorry we didn't make it your way Kevin.  Something out of ventilator parking was the consensus of the day thinking a shorter more direct approach might be beneficial with all the new snow.
Sounds like folks had a good time up there yoyoing!
Next time...
John
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philfort
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Re: Feb 24, 2013 Arrowhead's Little Sibling, Pt.5909'
« Reply #15 on: 02/26/13, 02:35 PM »

Has anybody else found good conditions on that ridge before, or mostly ski the basin?
J

Been up the Bow a couple of times. We skied the ridge once because conditions were sketchy, and I remember it being pretty fun. I remember a pillow line below it somewhere. And one time we dropped to the Jim Hill valley from the summit of the Bow. Steep trees and some cliffs are what I recall.
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