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| | |-+  May 7, 2016, MRNP-Whitman and Ohanapecosh Glaciers
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Author Topic: May 7, 2016, MRNP-Whitman and Ohanapecosh Glaciers  (Read 1841 times)
iluka
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Posts: 179


May 7, 2016, MRNP-Whitman and Ohanapecosh Glaciers
« on: 05/07/16, 09:58 PM »

Mark, Scott, Wes and I headed up to the Whitman Glacier area today. We skied out via Mazama Ridge to the saddle between Cowlitz Rocks and the Paradise Glacier, making fast time on the consolidated snow despite the lack of freeze the previous night.  From there, we dropped down onto and crossed the lower Cowlitz Glacier. We climbed up the east side of the moraine, then took a rising traverse to our left before getting into a drainage system with continuous snow that led all the way up to the Whitman. After popping out on the Glacier at about 7800 feet, we continued ascending to the 8600 foot level on the ridge separating the Whitman and Frying Pan Glaciers, arriving just over 4 hours after departing the parking lot. After a bit of lunch, we opted to make a run down the Ohanapecosh Glacier to get some extra turns in. We dropped about 800 feet but easily could have gone down further in what was a nicely covered basin with good quality snow and nary a soul besides us. From there, it was back up to the ridge where we regained the Whitman and retraced our path back to the car, finding good quality turns on the way down to the lower Cowlitz. The 900 foot climb up from the lower Cowlitz back to the saddle was a bit of work at the end of the day but we were able to keep skis on the entire way.

Most aspects we descended through the day had several inches of soft snow on a firm base that skied well when steep enough but were plenty grabby and slow in the flatter sections. Overall, a great tour in a beautiful area with a lot of solitude.


* Climbing_Up_to_the_Whitman.jpg (247.08 KB, 1000x750 - viewed 581 times.)

* Climbing_the_Whitman.jpg (232.83 KB, 1000x750 - viewed 598 times.)
« Last Edit: 05/08/16, 08:21 AM by iluka » Logged

Yet another trip I've skied up something I can't ski down!
swaterfall
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Posts: 88


Re: May 7, 2016, MRNP-Whitman and Ohanapecosh Glaciers
« Reply #1 on: 05/08/16, 11:16 AM »

Cool tour! Thanks for posting.
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Scottk
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Posts: 146


Re: May 7, 2016, MRNP-Whitman and Ohanapecosh Glaciers
« Reply #2 on: 05/08/16, 11:36 AM »

Great tour.  I was looking at the map and realized we actually went a quarter of the way around the mountain and back.  I was also interested to see that the USGS map shows the Ingraham/Cowlitz descending to 5,200 ft, a full mile below where we crossed.  Has anyone looked down on the Cowlitz in late summer and noted where the ice ends?
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