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| | |-+  January 19-20, 2014 - Monte Cristo
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Author Topic: January 19-20, 2014 - Monte Cristo  (Read 5645 times)
Bryan_B
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Posts: 17


January 19-20, 2014 - Monte Cristo
« on: 01/21/14, 09:45 PM »

On Sunday my brother I skied the north col of Monte Cristo. We left Barlow Pass early Sunday morning. It was our first time to Monte Cristo, and we managed to muck up the crossing the S. Fork of the Sauk in the dark. After finding the road again, we skied all the way to Monte Cristo with three short carries.

On Dumas Street, we stopped to make coffee and poke around the townsite. One sign warned against tampering with the historic buildings, another warned of arsenic in the creek. After a coffee break, we followed the trail up Glacier Creek. Re-frozen wet slide debris choked the basin above Glacier Falls. In Glacier Basin we stopped for lunch and transitioned from skis to crampons.

The climb to the north col of Monte Cristo pleasant if variable. We encountered breakable crust, supportive crust, white ice, and some cross-loaded in gullies. Minimal rock and icefall. At the col, we sat on our backpacks enjoying the late afternoon sun and calm winds. As the sun dipped behind Wilmans we skied down, then climbed up below the Glacier / Columbia divide. There we put on skis and headlamps, and started a long traversing glide to the western edge of the Wilmans Glacier.

Our original plan was to cross Wilmans Glacier, gain the Wilman Gap, bivy, then consider climbing Columbia in the morning, but two-thirds of the way across the Wilmans we started running into wind slab. Two ECTs (@6000) produced similar results: a fracture about 16 down after three hits from the shoulder. Little propagation. The shear was Q2-3. We talked through possible scenarios: most likely, wed climb across it no problems. But wed have to re-ski it Monday. Objective hazard was high. Any avalanche that did occur was likely to be large. And it was dark. We bailed. One at a time we crossed back to a rib on the east edge of the Wilmans. From there, we skied down into Glacier Basin and put up our tent. We spent the rest of the evening drinking tea and nibbling chocolate.

A fresh breeze kept up all night. If I were to guess, Id say 20 to 30 mph, with occasional stronger puffs. We slept in Monday morning, then climbed to the shoulder between Mystery Hill (I think this is what Beckey calls it) and Wilmans Peaks. Survival skiing took us back down to Glacier Creek. The skin out was uneventful. One mile from Barlow Pass, we met a couple walking their pit bull. Both wore Seahawks jerseys (12th man and R. Wilson). We asked about the score of Sundays game. Were going to the Super Bowl! they said. Go Hawks.


* 2014.01.19.12.39.01.000.jpg (41.44 KB, 446x346 - viewed 1472 times.)
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mcyrus
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Posts: 9


Re: January 19-20, 2014 - Monte Cristo
« Reply #1 on: 01/21/14, 10:13 PM »

NICE!
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Jake the Brit
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Posts: 338


Re: January 19-20, 2014 - Monte Cristo
« Reply #2 on: 01/22/14, 09:35 AM »

Have you got any more pics?? Looks great.
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Bryan_B
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Posts: 17


Re: January 19-20, 2014 - Monte Cristo
« Reply #3 on: 01/22/14, 05:04 PM »

Have you got any more pics?? Looks great.

I only took a few iphone snapshots. My brother took some pictures. Perhaps he'll post later.
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alecapone
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Posts: 805


Re: January 19-20, 2014 - Monte Cristo
« Reply #4 on: 01/22/14, 05:46 PM »

Nice one boys!

Jake, there are some good photos of the whole area in this report on nwhikers...


http://www.nwhikers.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=8009180
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scott
JackB.
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Posts: 11


Re: January 19-20, 2014 - Monte Cristo
« Reply #5 on: 01/22/14, 09:08 PM »

Fun trip


* Skinning_in_Glacier_Basin.jpg (166.54 KB, 700x525 - viewed 875 times.)

* Climbing_Monte_Cristo.jpg (182.75 KB, 700x525 - viewed 899 times.)

* Wilmans_Peaks.jpg (162.43 KB, 700x525 - viewed 922 times.)
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Jake the Brit
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Posts: 338


Re: January 19-20, 2014 - Monte Cristo
« Reply #6 on: 01/22/14, 11:25 PM »

,great area, I never really remember it until it gets posted. A bit of a hidden gem, gold mines and all!
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