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Author Topic: Veterans/Remembrance day at Heliotrope  (Read 3171 times)
kamtron
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Veterans/Remembrance day at Heliotrope
« on: 11/11/15, 08:36 PM »

Found quite the crowd at helio today. We and about 20 other shredders enjoyed 4" fresh wind buff of varying stiffness. Saw one or two close calls with holes/crevasses that usually aren't there. Visibility was actually quite good all day and the road has little snow. Skiing starts and stops at the hog's back.

https://instagram.com/p/999nROxJCs/
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dberdinka
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Re: Veterans/Remembrance day at Heliotrope
« Reply #1 on: 11/12/15, 09:16 AM »

Those holes are always there or at least will be from now on with what feels like several years of rapid climate change.  It's shocking how increasingly broken up the entire permanent icefield above the hogsback has become.   Last fall I made some turns up there  in mid-october after 6" of snow had fallen.  That 6" had fully bridged 2'  wide crevasses.   Extrapolate that to the typical 12"-18" of snow that seems to launch the season and you have a dangerous situation, particularly when the popularity of skiing up there continues to shoot through the roof.  IMO it's only a matter of time before someone takes the plunge.  I guess I've become old and cautious but I've been skiing heather meadows and bowls on the north side of the highway and will save glacier skiing for the spring.
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Mike Cheney
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Re: Veterans/Remembrance day at Heliotrope
« Reply #2 on: 11/12/15, 07:16 PM »

I think last year it snowed then rained then refroze then the powder came down last year. I was on it 10.27.14 and 11.4.15. Before we went up last year I watched videos posted that people where riding mainly ice refreeze that was closed up before the snow came down. It is way more opened up right now than in the past. I thought the weather and wind direction had to do with it being more closed up? I guess we will see where it's in the next non el nino cycle. I passed on riding yesterday - one reason was it's opened up enough that if something went wrong who has a rope and pulleys?
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A determined soul will do more with a rusty monkey wrench than a loafer will accomplish with all the tools in a machine shop.
kamtron
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Re: Veterans/Remembrance day at Heliotrope
« Reply #3 on: 11/13/15, 09:11 AM »

Some Canadian friends we made had brought crevasse gear, actually. I don't think it was necessary, but you did have to pay attention to where you were skiing, and some of the more "sidecountry" crowd certainly was not. I saw ski tracks that aired a ~10' crevasse (totally flat!) and I'm not sure it was on purpose.

Stellar day, however.
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Mike Cheney
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Re: Veterans/Remembrance day at Heliotrope
« Reply #4 on: 11/13/15, 03:10 PM »

I talked to my buddy that was up there both on the 4th and 11th; he said more snow bridges now and great conditions. Dosn't that area usually get closed up by the combo of snow/rain/refreeze/windchill repeat?
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A determined soul will do more with a rusty monkey wrench than a loafer will accomplish with all the tools in a machine shop.
kamtron
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Re: Veterans/Remembrance day at Heliotrope
« Reply #5 on: 11/14/15, 04:00 PM »

That is certainly the process by which bridges form, but I would still consider any bridges that new to be suspect even with a good refreeze, wouldn't you?
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Charlie Hagedorn
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Re: Veterans/Remembrance day at Heliotrope
« Reply #6 on: 11/14/15, 04:26 PM »

Whenever I think about glacier travel immediately after new snowfall, particularly in early season, I think of this January 8-9, 2002 trip report from JasonH and Ben Manfredi:

http://www.cascadeclassics.org/MountRainier/IngrahamDirect/Winter02/IngrahamDirect,Winter02.htm

In particular, I think about this photograph:



Caption: "Jason sitting next to the crevasse that nearly killed him. Our skin track leading up to it is behind him. That is pretty much where we climbed out. You can see some of the snow that held us on a constriction. You don't want to know what's below that. You can also see that this crevasse was impossible to spot without a probe."
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T. Eastman
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Re: Veterans/Remembrance day at Heliotrope
« Reply #7 on: 11/14/15, 05:47 PM »

^^^

Upside is Ben and Jason got a nifty snow profile...
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kamtron
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Re: Veterans/Remembrance day at Heliotrope
« Reply #8 on: 11/14/15, 05:57 PM »

Moral of the story is... Don't be a dope, use a rope!
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peteyboy
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Re: Veterans/Remembrance day at Heliotrope
« Reply #9 on: 11/14/15, 06:10 PM »

I use the same logic/caution displayed here about that place early season; this is a site many folks reference and the "public service announcement" factor of this thread cannot be overstated.
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