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+  Turns All Year Trip Reports
|-+  2013 Backcountry Trip Reports
| |-+  April 2013 Backcountry Trip Reports
| | |-+  April 27, 2013, Bean Basin
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Author Topic: April 27, 2013, Bean Basin  (Read 1880 times)

Posts: 634

April 27, 2013, Bean Basin
« on: 04/28/13, 12:03 PM »

Acceptable weather, but unfortunately not the greatest snow.

It was possible to drive the spur about half way, just before the culvert and borrow pit. The patch on road there probably could have been punched (but there was also evidence end of day that someone had tried and had to dig to make it). Beyond that road was basically snow free to summer parking. From there to Bean turnoff half snow but shallow. Also not enough for skinning along creek. Crossing not rock hoppable (for me) but trivially wadeable even tho current swift. Still no skinnable snow on other side til nearly to second gully. That was disappointing.

Tacoma Mountaineers there camped in basin for field trip. Every year I seem to be there same weekend as them. Around this time the light rain turned to light snow (even below 5K, snow!), and wind picked up. Trying to predict best aspect, chose to go up gully and glades approx. where the summer trail over Earl shoulder to Standup goes. Wind definitely strong on saddle, didn't feel like being in that wind on the whole ridge run to Earl.

Tried brief run into Standup but WAY overcooked on that southish aspect, bailed on it.

On way up snow on the westish aspects back into Basin seemed like it would be about right (1-2 inch ski pen, 4 inch pole pen). But unfortunately the base under wasn't entirely frozen, leading to trapcrustlike tracking of skis and not ideal corn experience. Also, snow was much stickier than I would have figured. Just incomplete or interrupted corning? The slight trace wet new? Did one additional lap of same run this time deliberately staying off the more open areas and was slightly better, somehow treed areas had better support crust under.

Redeeming aspect was that could tell that the Basin was one of few areas in surroundings not getting much crappier weather. Visibility was always such could see most of basin. And while wind was strong, wasn't stinging, and the light snow in the air was really quite pretty. Comfortable shell-on temp.

Had some kind of Dynafail on the flat stretch through forest and toe would no longer engage boot, GRRRR. So even more walking to be done now. And the hourlong deproach with skis on back felt like it was premature in the season given that lifts are still turning and passes and volcanoes are 100% ski-from-bumper.

Net takeaway was have definitely had funner times in Bean but what the hell it was good exercise on a day when the weather must've clearly sucked on most west slope mountains. Have been in there maybe 8 times now and corn in Bean is not all that reliable, or I have picked days that were somehow off. Would be interested to hear from the other party I saw how the snow up toward Judys/Marys was and whether my W aspect was just a wrong call.
« Last Edit: 04/28/13, 07:22 PM by wolfs » Logged

Posts: 8

Re: April 27, 2013, Bean Basin
« Reply #1 on: 04/28/13, 08:35 PM »

I was just finishing my second lap down two different sw face lines when you were about to cross over the creek (assuming that was you in the orange boots). I had great snow on both runs. A little scratchy at the top due to the wind on the 1st run, but overall very good.

I chased my friends up into Bean basin after seeing you and can say the snow was considerably more cooked on the se lines we skied back.
Big Steve

Posts: 328

Re: April 27, 2013, Bean Basin
« Reply #2 on: 04/29/13, 10:30 AM »

Would be interested to hear from the other party I saw how the snow up toward Judys/Marys was and whether my W aspect was just a wrong call.
That was us.  Nice to meet ya.  After we left you we did the SE ridge of Judis; the ridge top has become my favorite mellow Bean Basin tour.  We stopped c. 150' verts from Judi summit due to wintery weather, limited viz and cornice issues.  Met up with shrub on shortly after starting our descent.  Descent was mushy, not so bad -- even kinda fun -- for those of us with rocker tips, but the guy with trad camber was not having fun.

Car camped at Beverly and did some lower yoyoing on Sunday on S and SE aspects.  Out S aspect line down low as well consolidated.  Got a bunch of extra turns in thanks to Voile fishscales.

Whenever we wandered on the N side of a ridge we found deep mush.

BB tours whould be in better shape this coming weekend after the sun cooks it this week.  Gonna be crowded up there, I think.  Also could be some hisser hazard up there.
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