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NWAC Avalanche
+  Turns All Year Trip Reports
|-+  2014 Backcountry Trip Reports
| |-+  April 2014 Backcountry Trip Reports
| | |-+  April 09, 2014, Mt. Hood, White River Canyon
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Author Topic: April 09, 2014, Mt. Hood, White River Canyon  (Read 2699 times)

Posts: 91

April 09, 2014, Mt. Hood, White River Canyon
« on: 04/17/14, 02:15 AM »

Nothing epic, just a quick afternoon tour into White River Canyon on Mt. Hood. Wednesday, 4-09 was another incredible warm, sunny day and after dealing with some in town business, I met up with 4 other partners at Government Camp and we shuttled a car to the White River Snow Park on Highway 35 then drove up to Timberline. The day promised to be spring corn down low and wind packed powder up top. Avalanche concerns were mainly cornice falls triggering wet slabs and indeed, we saw plenty of natural releases on the west wall of the canyon.

We skinned up to the top of Palmer and were a little disappointed that the rain crust was persistent even up here and due to the late start, were not able to to go up to Devils Kitchen as hoped. We had hard packed powder with exposed ice globules up here in the wind and cold temperatures so we dropped into the canyon just above the Palmer traverse.

Due to avalanche conditions, we elected to avoid the canyon bottoms and rode the center ridge; keeping to the high ground. Shortly after the initial drop in, we got into more spring like corn snow but there was a breakable crust with sticky snow under so edge transitions were work. All in all, it was a super fun ride with some great weather and gorgeous scenery. Other than one spot which required a short 50 yard hike to gain a ridge line, we rode all of the way to the car and had a blast!

Silcox Hut at the top of Mile:

Head of White River Canyon where we dropped in:

The drop in:

Really nice snow and fantastic view:

Nice view of our route to the highway way down below:

Well defined crown and large cornices on west rim:

Getting into the rain crust looking at slide debris that were the size of minivans:

Everybody was enjoying the ride:

Lighting was getting good:

The traverse from hell to try to make ridge line as high as possible:

Almost there:

On top of the center ridge; all downhill from here:

Keeping an eye on our other party members:

We really wanted to drop the west canyon wall but didn't for obvious reasons:

Smooth sailing on the ridge top:

Lots of these on the west canyon wall:

The entire face went here and to ground in spots:

This was a fun little stretch:

Looking back from where we came, over too fast:

Obligatory group photo:

While not a super epic, super gnarly day in the back country, it was a super fun trip with incredible weather and scenery, moderately good riding conditions with an awesome crew and fun was had by all!


Posts: 85

Re: April 09, 2014, Mt. Hood, White River Canyon
« Reply #1 on: 04/17/14, 10:51 PM »

Nice work and report.  Getting to be that season...resorts are about done, but not much uphill required.



Stupid Hurts...Ask Me How I Know...

Posts: 288

Re: April 09, 2014, Mt. Hood, White River Canyon
« Reply #2 on: 04/18/14, 09:23 AM »

Thanks for the report!  Did you guys see any crevasses opening up?

Posts: 91

Re: April 09, 2014, Mt. Hood, White River Canyon
« Reply #3 on: 04/19/14, 01:45 AM »

No, everything on the White River Glacier still seemed pretty well filled in with only some minor depressions. While we never got close, the Bergshrund also looked still closed up. There were some minor glide cracks but nothing more than an inch or two wide.
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