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Bullion & Beatout Traverses

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Bullion & Beatout Traverses

Postby rmjwinters » Mon May 17, 2010 9:35 pm

For those of you who have done the Bullion or Beatout Traverse in the Wasatch Range in Utah, I have a couple of questions:

1) How long did either or both take you?
2) In your opinion what was the most difficult section?
3) Would you do anything differently if you were to do it again.


Randy
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Postby Ammon Hatch » Mon May 17, 2010 10:03 pm

Bullion Divide (Sugarloaf to Red Top, down White Pine from Red Top/Red Baldy saddle) - July 2005
1: About 7 hours
2: Technically, the scramble up AF Twins from Hidden Peak. Coming out White Pine was an adventure as I didn't have much experience at that point.
3: I carried too much crap and started late (like noon)

Beatout - June 2007
1: 13 hours?
2: The best scrambling was getting up to the lightning ridge/Chipman saddle. Descending Bells was taxing physically as I was already tired and beat up a little (see 3a)
3: a) Not fall down the west side of South Thunder and break my radio... in all seriousness, I slipped on some wet granite. This made me buy new shoes with better rubber. And led me to watch my step a little more carefully.
b)Don't go to the upper reservoir. It's hard to get past on the shore, traverse above it on the west.
c)Listen to Matt when he says not to go to the reservoir...

An interesting anecdote: Passing the lower Reservoir on the way to the car I saw Super Dell open carrying a large revolver. Couldn't help but laugh.
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Postby Matthew Van Horn » Mon May 17, 2010 10:52 pm

For Beatout, go late May or early June, especially on a heavy snow year. With abundant snow cover in Bells, the Beatin' out will be much easier and enjoyable. Last year the exit through Bells was fantastically easy because snow still covered the large boudler fall under the reservoir.

Don't go to the reservoir is a general rule, but some have folks have been able to traverse over the reservoir itself while it was still frozen. (See "Gristles Revenge" trip report.)

For Bullion, no real technically challenging spots. Push it all the way to White Baldy, you'll be glad you did. But the hard part is going to be climbing White Baldy from Red Baldy. I would like to do a Spring traverse of the entire ridge from Alta and out Bells canyon.

Always bring edible underwear. You never know when you may need it.
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Postby Joseph Bullough » Mon May 17, 2010 11:15 pm

Bullion Divide -

10:57 roundtrip
Started from Albion Basin and began by summiting the east ridge of Devils Castle. Finished with a summit of White Baldy and a descent down Red Pine Canyon. Involved quite a bit of waiting for partners, so I probably could have shaved at least an hour off the total time. I also summited all three "twins" (including the bastard twin). None of it was difficult. The traverse of Devils Castle might be difficult if it's your first time, otherwise it's just fun. The east ridge of White Baldy is tedious (lots of boulder hopping) but not difficult.

Beatout -

10:52 roundtrip
I was solo so I did all my own trailbreaking, which was particularly slow from Chipman to South Thunder. I imagine total time could vary considerably depending on conditions. The scramble up the ridge prior to Chipman is exposed in a few spots, but not difficult. The most difficult part of the hike is probably getting down Bells Canyon. Easy if you know the way, but potentially a real beast if you don't.
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Postby rmjwinters » Wed May 19, 2010 3:05 am

Ammon, Matt, & Joe,
Thanks for your info. I've done both traverses a few times, but I never logged my individual times on them. Once Albion Basin opens I am thinking of launching from there and exiting Bells. Of course, any hike that begins or ends in Bells will be challenging!

I am curious how much time you guys think that traverse would take based upon what you know and your experience. I am also toying with whether or not to attempt N. Thunder on that traverse and am curious about your thoughts there as well.


Super Dell in Bells wielding a weapon... :D
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Postby Joseph Bullough » Wed May 19, 2010 1:26 pm

For some reason it always takes me a long time to get to/from the Pfeifferhorn from White Baldy. For this reason I'd say the complete traverse would take somewhere around 12-13 hours. Again, a lot would depend on snow conditions and if you had to break trail the whole way, versus traveling with a partner. This would also assume that you travel pretty continuosly and don't spend much time hanging out on each summit.

edit: The traverse from South to North Thunder usually takes me around an hour. I think you would recover some of this time on the descent, since you'd be further north (i.e. down) Bells Canyon. I think the more challenging and time consuming option would be to head west to Bighorn and Lone Peak. Then you'd have the option of descending one of the Lone Peak routes rather than have to deal with Bells Canyon.
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Re: Bullion & Beatout Traverses

Postby rmjwinters » Sun Jul 17, 2011 5:11 pm

So, I attempted this in 2010 and bailed out via Red Pine.

I returned last Thursday and completed the traverses. I parked at Alta, walked up Albion and hiked Sugarloaf as my starting peak. I ended on South Thunder and exited Bells Canyon 13 hurs after beginning. The snow definitely helped my descent out of Bells for the most part. Below the reservoir it got nasty for a bit.

Overall, it was a great day!
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