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California Ice Conditions

Regional discussion and conditions reports for the Golden State. Please post partners requests and trip plans in the California Climbing Partners forum.
 

California Ice Conditions

Postby PellucidWombat » Mon Jan 03, 2011 5:23 am

For shame SP'ers! There isn't already a thread up?!

Well, here's the beef from Lee Vining Canyon:

A lot of fresh snow is covering the ice, but Vitaliy and I did our part to clear a lot of it off.

Approach: Bring your snowshoes!

Bard-Harrington Wall - Looking sad
Image

Main Wall - PHAT
Image

Chouinard Wall & Right Flow - In, but parts are thin
Image

There is some ice forming on the north side of Lee Vining Canyon for those looking for more adventure.
Image

Image
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby The Chief » Mon Jan 03, 2011 5:45 am

Photo Shop & Photo Shop CS are indeed in and looking very healthy.

Did you get on either of them and confirm that?
Image


I would seriously stay off anything on the North West Walls. Once the sun hits em, they begin to explode....
Image
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby Deb » Mon Jan 03, 2011 6:03 am

Guess we made a smart choice to head to the desert for New Year's. Friggin' Turtle Mountains had the warmest temps we could find.
Hold on to that ice up there Chief! We'll be looking for another weekend to check it out.
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby PellucidWombat » Mon Jan 03, 2011 7:07 am

The Chief wrote:Photo Shop & Photo Shop CS are indeed in and looking very healthy.

Did you get on either of them and confirm that?
Image


I would seriously stay off anything on the North West Walls. Once the sun hits em, they begin to explode....
Image


Chief - negatory on the first one. Hence photos provided for those that might see what I can't! I'd love to someday. Frankly, with so much fresh snow over everything, you really couldn't tell if there was ice there until you scraped a fair amount off! Sometimes there was ice, and other times, only rock. For the record, we started clearing off snow from the right-side leftwards :( :oops: Climbers and guides were only going as far as the center of the Main Wall.

As for the north side, as of Dec 31 no direct sunlight was hitting that ice, but it did look scarily thin . . .
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby PellucidWombat » Mon Jan 03, 2011 9:36 am

After drawing route lines on my photos (matching as best as I could the lines on the SMG website to my shots), it appears that the Photoshop routes and the Chimney route are the only ones that look at all healthy for their entire length on this wall :-(

I haven't bothered labeling these photos, but for those who are interested:

Lines on Bard-Harrington:
Image

Lines on Main Wall:
Image

Mixed Lines in Heal Toe Area:
Image
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby rhyang » Mon Jan 03, 2011 5:12 pm

PellucidWombat wrote:
The Chief wrote:I would seriously stay off anything on the North West Walls. Once the sun hits em, they begin to explode....
Image


As for the north side, as of Dec 31 no direct sunlight was hitting that ice, but it did look scarily thin . . .


The north side of the canyon is south-facing. It isn't obvious on a cloudy, stormy day but when those walls get sun the ice has a habit of detaching and falling. On a sunny day the rock and ice fall on the opposite side of the canyon is pretty cool to watch, probably not so cool to be under :shock:

It can be fun to boulder on in the morning but beware ..
Taaaake !
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby Fire4x4 » Mon Jan 03, 2011 8:15 pm

Took a hike up Eagle Creek Canyon on the 1st. The snowshoe in was horrible! Breaking trail in 2-3 ft of powder, approach took about 2.5 hrs. The south side of the creek is very well in! Lots of TR available. Best I have seen it in the 3 years I've been climbing there. Sunny Falls was covered in snow pretty well. The ice looked good from a distance but up close it was pretty wet and soft. Water flowing between the ice and rock. I was able to get a couple laps in though.

If anybody is up to go, shoot me a PM.
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby rhyang » Mon Jan 03, 2011 8:27 pm

PellucidWombat wrote:For shame SP'ers! There isn't already a thread up?!


fyi Sierra Mountain Guides has been reporting on conditions since December. Some friends went after Thanksgiving (shitty approach) and again in early December. I think one of them posted on supertopo, which has several LVC-related threads already.

The approach should get better with the clear weather and no doubt a boot pack will develop with guided traffic. Another SP'er and his buds were there over New Year's -- maybe he will chime in later. It's nice to see pics, though it's too bad the Bard-Harrington isn't in as fat as past years (yet).

I am sure I will see some of you in the canyon this year. Also glad to hear V got his first taste of the dark evil sport :)
Taaaake !
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby PellucidWombat » Mon Jan 03, 2011 9:00 pm

rhyang wrote:I am sure I will see some of you in the canyon this year. Also glad to hear V got his first taste of the dark evil sport :)


I have plans to corrupt him this winter. He's taken to the cold and wetness well :twisted:
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby westhegimp » Tue Jan 04, 2011 12:32 am

Nice pics, thanks! Nice to meet all you SPers.

Awesome weekend!

Happy New Year!
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby The Chief » Tue Jan 04, 2011 1:10 am

PellucidWombat wrote:After drawing route lines on my photos (matching as best as I could the lines on the SMG website to my shots), it appears that the Photoshop routes and the Chimney route are the only ones that look at all healthy for their entire length on this wall :-(

Photoshop and Photoshop CS are in fact my two favorite lines on the wall. Will be on em the day after tomorrow.


Here is an Old Timers site for the routes.... Put your mouse on either of the three sections, go to that section and then do the same for each individual line and whalla!

N'Joy...

Lee Vining Ice
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby PellucidWombat » Tue Jan 04, 2011 3:54 am

The Chief wrote:
PellucidWombat wrote:After drawing route lines on my photos (matching as best as I could the lines on the SMG website to my shots), it appears that the Photoshop routes and the Chimney route are the only ones that look at all healthy for their entire length on this wall :-(

Photoshop and Photoshop CS are in fact my two favorite lines on the wall. Will be on em the day after tomorrow.


Here is an Old Timers site for the routes.... Put your mouse on either of the three sections, go to that section and then do the same for each individual line and whalla!

N'Joy...

Lee Vining Ice


Don't forget to click on some of the route names - those that are 'active' have a series of photos of climbing on the clicked route.
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby rhyang » Mon Jan 10, 2011 3:46 pm

Climbed in Eagle Creek Canyon on Friday. Sunny Falls had a nice pillar and after kovarpa led it, we toproped it into submission -

Image

Image

There were several lines on the south side of the canyon, west of the Eagle Lake inlet. Cutty Sark (WI4+) looked in, and kovarpa led something to the right of it I hadn't seen formed before, with a mixed finish, ending up at a tree above.

Image

We climbed in LVC over the weekend and saw SP'ers galore :) The right side of the Bard-Harrington Wall saw several ascents (including westhegimp, kovarpa / justing) -

Image
(rock gear mandatory, or so I hear :) )

On the Main Wall, Spiral Staircase on the left was in, and there were three nice fat lines of WI4-ish to the right.

Steve Larson on first pitch of Spiral Staircase (WI3+)
Image

Steve Larson leading on the left flow (WI4-), another party in the center, justing following the right
Image

Unfortunately it didn't look like Caveman or the upper part of Heel Toe were in. Saturday was a bit warm and the ice was wet -- Spiral Staircase's crux pitch was a hose-down :lol:

Sunday was windy and cooler, so the ice was harder and brittle in places, with lots of spindrift blasts. We took a couple cool-down laps on Chouinard Falls towards the end of our day and all the traffic had turned it into nice stairsteps :)

The approach was a nice bootpack both days. Enjoy !
Taaaake !
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby PellucidWombat » Mon Jan 10, 2011 7:17 pm

The ice at Eagle Creek was still pretty nice on Sunday. As of then you could make the approach without snowshoes.

The free-standing pillar is forming up, but still too thin to climb, but there is a smaller pillar further left that made for a nice TR. I'll put up pictures later.
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Re: California Ice Conditions

Postby kevin trieu » Mon Jan 10, 2011 9:11 pm

Good to see SPers out there enjoying the ice. Went leashless for the first time this weekend and found out that it wasn't so bad.
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