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Featured Trip Reports

Old Dreams Die Hard: An Attempt to Climb the Highest Volcano on Earth by Scott

Ojos del Salado is a peak that I have wanted to climb for a long time. In fact, it became one of my top three "dream climbs" back in 1984, at age 10, which is when I first read about the mountain. The other two dream climbs at the time were Muztag Ata and Aconcagua. Unlike Aconcagua however, Ojos del Salado seemed so mysterious and unknown. Dreams however, change over time and over the years I focused on other mountains in the world and never got close to Ojos del Salado.

Old dreams are eventually either fulfilled, never die, or die hard, so Ojos del Salado was always in the back of my mind somewhere and for a later date. That later date finally came in January 2016. Because of work, I can only get time off in the Northern Hemisphere winter. My thirteen year old son and I wanted to attempt something higher than we ever have before. Aconcagua came to mind, but that mountain has gotten more expensive and crowded over the years. There was also a rule in place that you had to be 14 years of age to climb it and my son was not 14 yet. Ojos del Salado seemed like the logical choice for our climb in the winter of 2015-2016.

Panther Gorge-New Ice Route-By Tooth and Claw-2016 January 30 by MudRat

I needed my Panther Gorge fix—the last visit was in November. Warm temperatures in the valley prompted me to consider how much ice might be in the gorge. The low snowpack made it even more tempting given the 8.5 mile-long approach. Panther Gorge veteran Bill Schneider and Devin Farkas, assistant director of the Outdoor Program at St. Lawrence University, jumped on board. As usual we met at the Rooster Comb parking lot at 5:00 am to sort gear and drive a single car to the Garden. Temperatures hovered at 15F though they were forecast to rise to the mid-thirties in the valley.

Philmont, Itinerary 24 by Mark Doiron

A brief explanation of why this trip report is so late: It's been on my "Gotta Do It Someday" list for quite awhile now. However, during our trek I kept a journal each day and, upon return to Oklahoma, I put that journal where it wouldn't get lost. Trouble was, shortly after that I could not remember where that was! I genuinely looked all over the house. And, it wasn't until a couple weeks ago when I was searching through a file cabinet for papers to use at my son's Eagle ceremony that I finally found it. Aha! Thus, I'm now ready to write this trip report.

This is the Philmont adventure of Crew 612J-4 (2005) from the Last Frontier Council of the Boy Scouts of America. We all happen to be in Boy Scout Troop 275 of Choctaw, Oklahoma, but this was a "council contingent", which means that we could have been a mixed unit crew (in fact, we had another six folks attend from Troop 275 and they were place in a mixed unit crew). Because this was a council contingent, the folks in charge assumed that the participants (108 total on 9 crews) didn't have much backpacking experience. That was not the case with our crew (more on that in a moment), but it means that we participated in a variety of preparatory tasks. I'm going to describe that below because I think it might be useful for other folks who are preparing for a similar trip.

The Most Beautiful Mother In the World by EastKing

Sometime a good mountain trip is not an intense epic or life altering event. Sometime it is a trip that requires less than average effort that gives enjoyment to a scrambler or climber. In Washington State there are a number of excellent smaller summits that require comparatively little effort but absolutely amazing reward. Mother Mountain in the northwest part of Mount Rainier National Park is a clearly an example of this special type of summit. What the mountain lacks in difficulty, height and elevation gain, it gives back in views, wilderness and overall quality.

Featured Articles

Georges Livanos Georges Livanos "Le Grec" by ericvola

Georges Livanos Alias Le Grec, King of the Calanques, Emperor in the Dolomites, 500 first ascents beyond Verticality. One of the aphorisms he always was found of: "Better one more peg than one man less… especially if that man is me!” Pure amateur, he put 25.000 pegs, opened 500 routes in the Calanques of Marseille, 40 in the Dolomites, around 20 in the Alps and repeated quite a number of big routes in the Alps and the Dolomites. Many of the great names of Alpinism did rope with him, Jean Franco, Maurice Herzog, Lionel Terray, Gaston Rébuffat, Jean Couzy,Michel Vaucher, Claudio Barbier, not to mention his Italian friends such as Gino Soldà, Armando da Roit, Beppi de Franchesch, Marcello Bonafede, Menegus, Stenico and many others particularly when they came in the Calanques.

Chasing the Light Chasing the Light by Mark Doiron

Photography is all about light. That should be patently obvious to even the most casual observer.

Abalakov in history and in ice Abalakov in history and in ice by Liba Kopeckova

The Abalakov thread, or V-thread is ice protection named after Soviet climber Vitaly Abalakov. To know how to make a proper Abalakov (=v-thread) should be a requirement for anyone climbing multi-pitch ice routes. It is easy to create, it doesn’t require leaving expensive gear behind, e.g. rappeling on an ice screw, and it is very safe. I have used abalakov’s in anchors, even as an protection when running out of screws, and mostly it is used for rappel.

Featured Photos

Engelhörner Engelhörner by Andreas Fischer

A nice view of the Engelhörner group with a little lake in the foreground. The photo was taken near Grosse Scheidegg during my mountainbike tour Schwarzwaldalp - First and back at 14th October, 2006.

Nubbin or Nubble Face Nubbin or Nubble Face by JohnEly

Geoff Farrar, a local boulderer who perhaps has the record for number of ascents at Carderock since he started climbing there in 1975, on one of his last, picking his way up Nubbin Facea, a well known 60' moderate top rope problem on the Hades Heights crag, in Dec. 2013, a week before his death.

Photo of the Moment

Mt. Gardiner and University Peak
Feb 8, 2016 5:16 PM by Noondueler

Photo of the Day

Monte Ciosé
Feb 7, 2016 7:58 AM by Antonio Giani

Photo of the Week

Winter meets Autumn
Jan 31, 2016 4:06 PM by mills

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