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| |-+  August 2007 Backcountry Trip Reports
| | |-+  8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
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Author Topic: 8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP  (Read 5422 times)
skierlyles
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8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
« on: 08/13/07, 05:59 PM »

Mad Dog and Ron J were kind enough to allow a newbie to ski with them on one of their favorite late season patches- I happily followed! Upon arriving and making a few runs we bumped into Scottsman and Tangerine (Sydney) who were of the same mind and came up to get in some August turns.

Sunday morning brought us to the Paradise lot trailhead and on our way at 9:20 am. We were welcomed to Rainier by the usual shroud of fog/ low lying rainclouds with visibility at about 50-75 yds- nothing bad  enough to stop us from skiing in August. A few raindrops and a bit of dew forming on our brows and we were on the "patch" and skiing 300-400 ft. of vert off of a nice headwall by 11am. If you actually know where we are talking about you may want to know that far skiers right of the patch there are two big holes growing and will eventually connect to form one big nasty crack. Don't fall in and stay away from the big boulder on the skier's right (below it are the two holes). It is a tasty steep shot but isn't worth falling in.

After yo-yoing the minimally sun-cupped surface and satisfying our need for turns we turned to skills development for the remainder of our time on the "patch". Ron J thought it would be a good idea to lower the newbie over the vertical headwall in his castrator harness, and after some flailing about and readjustment of the jewels I successfully completed my first rapel in skis (pic below thanks to Ron J).

 Thanks to Ron for the newly attained skill and to Mad Dog for  allowing Ron to divulge the secret  of "Jeanette's Slot". Special thanks to both for showing me the endless potential on Rainier and for a great time. I am looking forward to the winter snows and  further exploration with the Veterans (keep showing me the stashes and I will show you the beers).

Good luck Scottie with the new job. Good luck Tangerine with the new boots ( you just had an off day). Good luck Ron J and Mad Dog finding those ever dwindling patches of snow to keep that streak going. And congrats to TAY and Jeanette (aka- Mad Dog) and Charles E. for their NPR article and story.

http://news.opb.org/article/backcountry-skiers-pursue-turns-all-year/

Ron- feel free to post some of your pics (I cannot figure out how to make them small enough).

And as to the TAY family- I am happy to be a part of the "family" and don't ever want out!

Chris (skierlyles)
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Mad_Dog
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Re: 8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
« Reply #1 on: 08/13/07, 08:01 PM »

It was nice meeting you Chris and sharing some of our "secrets", but then again, we talked and pointed all day long and with the visibility like it was, did we really give up many "secrets"  Wink  Cool.

Playing in the soup photos here

Thanks for showing up on time and being such a good sport with the rope trick Smiley.
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There is nothing worse than refusing to learn: this is where old age begins.

Jeanette
blitz
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Re: 8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
« Reply #2 on: 08/13/07, 09:02 PM »

wow - you are die hards! Cool
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alisa
skip
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Re: 8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
« Reply #3 on: 08/14/07, 12:47 AM »

I, too, made my way to the south side of the mountain this weekend.  Rather than Sunday fog, however, I chose Saturday sun.  We delicate types prefer fairer weather given the opportunity. 

My paltry effort to round up partners this week was duly rewarded with no partners this week.  No matter, though, as there were no fewer than 2700 park guests on the Muir snowfield.  Consistent with expectations, I hit snow somewhere in the Pebble Creek vicinity and continuous snow shortly thereafter.  Through a series of unspecific maneuvers, I was able to overcome the herd, making good time [for me] to the desired latitude and elevation.  Here I stopped to eat another carrot cake Clif bar, which I did not enjoy. 

The first leg of the descent offered relatively rough terrain.  Anything below 8,400', however, was fast and smooth, albeit dirty--at least where I found myself.  In any event, it was surely worth the hike.
-s


I should add that I ran into three other TAYers at the takeout - real nice fellas, though names escape me at the moment.   From the sounds of things, they found unfavorable conditions on the uppermost reaches of the Snowfield near Camp Muir.  Given Snowfield suncups are visible from the Paradise parking lot, I'm inclined to believe them.
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Plinko
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Muir 8/13
« Reply #4 on: 08/14/07, 10:10 AM »

I also found myself in the Pardise area in search of August turns. 

Nice day out, not so nice skiing.  Weather was great, mostly clear, typical winds above 8000'. 

I was up there about 4 weeks ago and things were pretty good, nice corn snow, few exposed crevasses.  Now the route is sun cupped in most sections and heavily crevassed above Muir.  The DC route is so meandering (going UNDER and around the cleaver) this late in the year that it adds an hour to your trip. 

Snow conditions were a bit unusual for me, there was about 10" of new at Ingraham Flats, and slightly less at Muir. It got blown around and settled into the hollows of the sun cups, making it very inconsistent (as if sun cups aren't bad enough on their own).  I zigzagged all over trying to find a section that wasn't all cupped out, but to no avail. 

Nisqually chute is out of the question. 

The best strategy for the day seemed to be skiing in other climbers' tracks (not the main up-path). 

August snow is dirty and I have a nice new base grind on my skis all at no charge. Smiley

If I were to do it again, I'd leave the skis, or ski somewhere else.  What a silly addiction.  Roll Eyes
« Last Edit: 08/14/07, 10:20 AM by Plinko » Logged
Snow Bell
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Re: 8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
« Reply #5 on: 08/14/07, 10:53 AM »

I should add that I ran into three other TAYers at the takeout - real nice fellas, though names escape me at the moment.   From the sounds of things, they found unfavorable conditions on the uppermost reaches of the Snowfield near Camp Muir.  Given Snowfield suncups are visible from the Paradise parking lot, I'm inclined to believe them.

Guilty as charged (nice guy) Wink  My buddys Don, Jeff and I meet up with the illustrious Skierlyles for a trip to Muir in the Saturday sun.  It was a beautiful day and I was very happy to be skiing regardless of the quality.  Chris (Skierlyles) is a swell guy and ski partner,  highly recommended.  Thanks for joining us and I hope that we can get together for September turns as I think that my buddies were put off by the conditions that we found below Muir.

It was also nice meeting you Skip.  We talked about Mt. Stone and Mt. Skokomish and how we had each skied one but not both.  Keep me in mind if pairing these is on your agenda.

I sure do enjoy running into TAYers in the hills and look forward to the opportunity to thank many of you for sharing your thoughts, routs and experience.  It has certainly helped me to make the transition from skiing the frontside to the dark... I mean backside.

Thanks to all!
Joe

Also...  any suggestions for September turns are welcome.  (Is it better to get them early in the month or to wait and hope that it snows somewhere?  Where can I find turns that will regester on the joyometer?  Will Lindsy Lohan be o.k.? I am starting to worry.)
« Last Edit: 08/14/07, 11:07 AM by Snow Bell » Logged

Life is going to slide by you one way or another
Teleskichica
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Re: Muir 8/13
« Reply #6 on: 08/14/07, 11:58 AM »



August snow is dirty and I have a nice new base grind on my skis all at no charge. Smiley

If I were to do it again, I'd leave the skis, or ski somewhere else.  What a silly addiction.  Roll Eyes

I, not finding any ski partners for Saturday, went solo backpacking instead--but given the warnings, I am still undeterred and determined to get something in for August.  Me=Silly Addict
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Livin' high on the cold smoke!
skierlyles
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Re: 8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
« Reply #7 on: 08/14/07, 07:41 PM »

Yes- Joe (snow bell), Don, Jeff and I skied the Muir Snowfield on Sat 8/11/07 and were greeted with the deepest suncups I had ever skied. The views were outstanding- Adams to the Southeastish and Helen's to the South made for a great backdrop and temps were perfectly warm for the descent and not too bad on the ascent. We did find that it was continuous snow to pebble creek and as long as you enjoy the suncup rodeo you would've had a good time. No complaints as snow is nowhere else to be found in such a continuous stretch as there on the snowfield.

As good as August can be and good company was had. I would ski with Snow Bell and crew anytime. Wish I were going to hit some Sept turns with you all but seems I will be unable to until snows fall again. I guess I don't have the time and addiction you all do... yet. Joe- hope you find someone to ski with next month.

Looking forward to more postings to keep my mind and soul happy. Hey, if I can't be out there doing it someone else should.

Chris
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Tangerine
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Re: 8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
« Reply #8 on: 08/15/07, 09:30 AM »

I liked your name for me so much I decided to become an official TAY'er. Thanks, everyone, for great company and a fun day to get August turns done!
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korup
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Posts: 320


Re: 8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
« Reply #9 on: 08/15/07, 01:30 PM »

I also ran some shorts laps on the Muir on Sun, 8/12. Visibility was marginal (low cloud deck, short clearing around 8K, then another band of higher level clouds). The suncups weren't as bad as other years, but the snow was dirty, inconsistent and not at all ideal. Well, Aug is in the bag, and the mantra for the day was "It doesn't have to be fun, to be fun."  I suspect Sept will be challenging! Last year, there were huge (2' diameter) suncup-craters, with blue meltwater in the bottom of each one....
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Snow Bell
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Re: 8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
« Reply #10 on: 08/15/07, 11:14 PM »

So it gets worse you say?   Great.  The turns just below Muir reminded me of skiing mogul fields on a pair of 205 race planks.  That is an excellent example of it not having to be fun to be fun but I have always felt that it tends to be more fun when it is.

There must be better options for September!                                 ...right Huh
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Mad_Dog
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Posts: 617


Re: 8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
« Reply #11 on: 08/16/07, 07:25 AM »

There must be better options for September!                                 ...right Huh

"A clever skier will often find an oasis of good snow while the rest of the party - within a few yards of him - are struggling with crust." (Sir Arnold Lunn)
Maybe in this case we should say struggling with sun cups.

Sometimes some of the better summer snow is often not that far.  It might not be the longest patch, but with a few laps it seems to make the fun meter go way up.
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There is nothing worse than refusing to learn: this is where old age begins.

Jeanette
ron j
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Re: 8/12/07, Paradise "Patch", MRNP
« Reply #12 on: 08/16/07, 09:32 PM »

"A clever skier will often find an oasis of good snow while the rest of the party - within a few yards of him - are struggling with crust." (Sir Arnold Lunn)
Maybe in this case we should say struggling with sun cups.



No sun cup action there.

Skierlyles with jewel arranger



and free at last




More Photos HERE



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"When I stop having fun I'm turnin' around"
"Prediction is very difficult, especially if it's about the future." - Niels Bohr
"If a given person makes it a priority not to die in an avalanche, he or she stands a very good chance of living a long, happy life in the mountains." - Jill Fredston
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