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| | |-+  March 22-April 5 2014, The Neacola Range- AK
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Author Topic: March 22-April 5 2014, The Neacola Range- AK  (Read 44599 times)
jtrue
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Re: March 22-April 5 2014, The Neacola Range- AK
« Reply #25 on: 05/14/14, 01:40 PM »

That photo of John hucking the cliff against a huge Alaskan backdrop is so money!
Also, I know from scientific testing that glacial ice cocktails are in fact the best.

Thanks!  My buddy Adam captured that. We got video too from John's POV and mine.  Will take a while to put together an edit though.
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jtrue
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Re: March 22-April 5 2014, The Neacola Range- AK
« Reply #26 on: 05/15/14, 01:39 PM »

DAY NINE:

This weather is unbelieveable, another day of waking up to blue skies!  Is it a dream, are we going to pay for the high pressure that's been lingering?  I was hoping this weather would last until our pickup day, but Matt texted us on our Delorme Inreach to let us know we would see a weak disturbance hit over the next couple days.  Adam decided to take a rest day, John and I decided go on a small tour up to the cirque that held the Twin Towers Couloir and Beelzebub.  Thinking back we should of probably taken a rest day as well.  We had been going for 8 days straight ascending between 3000-6000 vertical feet and walking 5-15 miles each day depending on the objective.  We didn't take any pics on day nine.

DAY TEN:
We woke to light winds but clear skies, we could tell something was moving in, how soon we didn't know.  Weather in a big city is an educated guess, but when it comes to forecasting weather in remote parts of Alaska there isn't much data to support a forecast one way or the other.  It looks like Matt was correct that we might see deteriorating conditions.

That being said, we wanted to take advantage of the time we had left with good weather.  We ate a cold breakfast and got an early start.  This was one of the coldest days so far, it took us all a couple hours to warm up.  John had lost some feeling in his toes, but it didn't seem to be too serious.  No discoloration or anything of that nature.

The plan was to head west then ascend another glacier and get on the backside of the zone we had skied the two previous days.  All being told it ended up being 5500 feet of ascending and 14.5 miles.  We had planned to ski a bigger line, but John and I were both a bit tired, so we just took some mellow pow laps and toured up and over to the zone we were familiar with.  That rest day would've come in handy.  Even though we didn't get to ski a big couloir like the days past the views were worth it and wet our appetite for other objectives in the area.

A NW facing zone I was salivating over


Touring up to our high point to take some mellow pow laps, icefall as a backdrop


On the way back we were in the shade and it got unbelievably cold, my skins didn't agree with that so they protested.  I walked right out of them both at the same time.  Couldn't help but laugh at the situation.


To Be Continued...
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jtrue
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Re: March 22-April 5 2014, The Neacola Range- AK
« Reply #27 on: 05/28/14, 03:11 PM »

DAY ELEVEN:
John and I decided to take a rest day, we were beat from touring the last 10 days in a row.  Adam was a bit fresher from his rest day on day 9, so he decided to do a long circumnavigation of the glacier we were camping on.  It ended up being a  17 mile day with 2300 feet of vert for him, nice effort!  John and I made a dinner of Chicken Alfredo and threw some in Adam's insulated mug, I'm sure he was happy to have dinner made when he rolled into camp.

We had been in contact with Joe via our Delorme Inreach and set a pickup day for the next day as it looked like it might be our last chance to get out before a low energy storm came in.

DAY TWELVE:
Woke to low cloud cover and realized we probably wouldn't get out.  Hopped in the igloo to cook some pancakes and sent Joe a text letting him know that the flying conditions weren't good.  Spent most of the day reading and peering out the tent to see if the clouds had cleared.

Best time for a selfie!


Later in the day the clouds burnt off, but it was too late for a pickup.  We ended up going on a short mellow tour.  My skins glopped something horrible because of the couple inches of snow and cloud cover keeping heat in.


Waxing skins didn't help




Descending into the Abyss


And heading back to camp


DAY THIRTEEN:
Again we woke to clouds, but they were a bit higher than the day before with some blue patches. 


It looked like we might have a weather window to get out if we were lucky.  I texted Joe but didn't hear back, weird.  We resigned ourselves to our tents wondering if we would be stuck on the glacier for the weekend.  All of a sudden we heard the familiar drone of a Beaver flying low, it was Joe!  We quickly packed up camp, threw our wet gear in the plane and got out of there.  We couldn't have asked for a better weather window.  People say this is a trip of a lifetime, but I know we'll be back!
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jtrue
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Re: March 22-April 5 2014, The Neacola Range- AK
« Reply #28 on: 05/28/14, 03:12 PM »

That about raps it up, can't wait for next year!
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Jonn-E
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Re: March 22-April 5 2014, The Neacola Range- AK
« Reply #29 on: 05/28/14, 05:20 PM »

That is some heinous glop.
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jtrue
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Re: March 22-April 5 2014, The Neacola Range- AK
« Reply #30 on: 05/28/14, 08:50 PM »

That is some heinous glop.

Yeah, I was the only one with issues.  My skins are 3 years old, think it's time for a new pair.
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Jonn-E
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Re: March 22-April 5 2014, The Neacola Range- AK
« Reply #31 on: 05/28/14, 10:09 PM »

Nikwax makes a waterproofer for climbing skins that may help, I think wetness is the root cause.
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jtrue
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Re: March 22-April 5 2014, The Neacola Range- AK
« Reply #32 on: 06/21/14, 01:00 PM »

First try at putting an edit together, enjoy.

2014 Skiing the Neacolas
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Jonn-E
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Re: March 22-April 5 2014, The Neacola Range- AK
« Reply #33 on: 06/21/14, 01:22 PM »

Fantastic
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