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NWAC Avalanche
+  Turns All Year Trip Reports
|-+  2016 Backcountry Trip Reports
| |-+  April 2016 Backcountry Trip Reports
| | |-+  April 30-May 1, 2016, Ragged Loop
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Author Topic: April 30-May 1, 2016, Ragged Loop  (Read 1548 times)
Charlie Hagedorn

Posts: 1886

April 30-May 1, 2016, Ragged Loop
« on: 05/01/16, 08:56 PM »

With an unbeatable forecast and limited preparation, our group of four, no wait, five, settled on looping out of Easy Pass for a tour of the Mesachie Glacier.

The snow's response to the sun was the question of the hour every hour on Saturday, as we expected the south side of Ragged Ridge to be dangerously soft and easily cut. We stayed high to mitigate the risk, but encountered an entire spectrum from questionably edgy to soft breakable. Nary a sluff was cut, and the slide-for-life was of greater concern than any avalanche.

We reached the correct col in very late afternoon, and were pleasantly surprised to find a friendly entrance to the glacier. A further surprise awaited -- an inch of dry snow that would blend gracefully into corn as we descended into the cirque immersed in wonderful light. The travails of the day's traverse were easily forgotten in effortless moderate turns.

Not far from the base of our descent, we opted to camp quickly in order to savor the warm evening's view, a choice which would keep us in cool shadow the following morning, but was easily worth the trade. No moonlight meant plenty of starlight.

Limited side-trip options and a desire to reserve time for unknown deproach shenanigans led to a scenic morning stroll to the top of 6730, where we soaked in views as the corn soaked up sun.

Returning to the highway met expectations: fine turns up top, becoming tortuous treewell navigation, scratchy forest turns, then down-booting through an east-side forest, culminating in a mixed crossing of Granite Creek by logs and fords. S & K ran shuttle with pre-positioned running shoes.

Numbers: Snowline was ~4500-4700' both heading to Easy Pass and descending to the highway.  It took us about four hours to traverse from Easy Pass to the col, far longer than we anticipated; Ragged Ridge never disappoints.

Thank you, David, Kevin, Kristi, and Susan, for a memorable trip with kind and competent mountainpeople.

* TraversingRaggedRidgeTAY.jpg (193.15 KB, 1000x718 - viewed 644 times.)

* MesachiePassStarsTAY.jpg (192.41 KB, 1000x667 - viewed 636 times.)

* 20TurnsTAY.jpg (188.55 KB, 995x800 - viewed 674 times.)
« Last Edit: 05/02/16, 09:47 AM by Charlie Hagedorn » Logged


Posts: 3

Re: April 30-May 1, 2016, Ragged Loop
« Reply #1 on: 05/05/16, 02:08 PM »

Charlie, I am not sure if  I understand your statements about the deproach route.   Did you head out via the valley below the N. side of Ragged Ridge past Kitling Peak and Lake, but not all the way around to the Easy Pass trail, just straight out to the road?  I have wondered about cornice hazards on the back of the ridge in there.
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