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2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

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

Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby SeanReedy » Mon Aug 19, 2013 11:25 pm

^^^I nearly checked that area out myself a couple of times last summer. It looks worthwhile.

3Deserts, it is just too darn far from the glitz of Hollywood with the 13ers, 14ers, Eastern Sierra, Yosemite, Tioga, Virginia Lakes, Green Creek, Sawtooth/Twin Lakes, Sonora Pass, Leavitt Meadows, and Tahoe drawing the crowds before they ever bother going down dusty dirt roads to find dry, dusty, warm, mostly lakeless terrain. I've been to the trailhead and hiked from several surrounding trailheads. It's a nice area for fishing and hiking/scrambling in solitude. I met some llamas, cattle, and horses nearby.
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby WyomingSummits » Tue Aug 20, 2013 12:13 am

SeanReedy wrote:^^^I nearly checked that area out myself a couple of times last summer. It looks worthwhile.

3Deserts, it is just too darn far from the glitz of Hollywood with the 13ers, 14ers, Eastern Sierra, Yosemite, Tioga, Virginia Lakes, Green Creek, Sawtooth/Twin Lakes, Sonora Pass, Leavitt Meadows, and Tahoe drawing the crowds before they ever bother going down dusty dirt roads to find dry, dusty, warm, mostly lakeless terrain. I've been to the trailhead and hiked from several surrounding trailheads. It's a nice area for fishing and hiking/scrambling in solitude. I met some llamas, cattle, and horses nearby.

Agreed. The Bighorn range in WY gets the same treatment. Sick alpine rock but no one wants to make 30 mile round trips to climb a 2,000ft face on a 12k peak. They want the 14ers, which is fine......I get solitude here. :)
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby seano » Tue Aug 20, 2013 12:17 am

Bob Burd wrote:Sean might have dislocated or broken a finger in the effort. It wasn't looking too good when we saw it back at the TH.

Peak bagging will continue, but blogging will be limited.
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby Bob Burd » Tue Aug 20, 2013 12:32 am

Today's easy day was actually easy. Nice to get a break before things get tough again tomorrow. I'll try to summarize the past three days.

Day 2 - Twelve Flag / Adamson
These 13ers are located in the same area as Mt. Morgan South. Twelve Flags is immediately NE of Morgan and most participants climbed these two. Adamson is located several miles to the southeast of Twelve Flags along a brutal ridgeline that includes Broken Finger. I had been on Broken Finger before and thought the ridgeline from Twelve Flags to Broken Finger to be class 3. It turned out to be class 4-5. Eric and Sean blew threw like it was nothing. Jonathan took one look and dropped off a chute on the north side of the ridge, then up to Broken Finger. Pat and Luke did similarly on the south side of the ridge, bypassed Broken Finger and climbed the old mining road up to Adamson. Most everyone else called it a day after Morgan and Twelve Flags and went home. Luca and I spent almost three hours negotiating the ridgeline. By the time we got to the saddle with Broken Finger we were too tired to continue on the ridge. We then dropped down the south side and followed Pat and Luke up the old road several hours behind them. Troubles were not quite done - the descent route I had drawn on the map to get down to Tamarack Lake turned out to be harder than I expected. Again, poor memory. The better route, loose class 3, was closer to Broken Finger. The others figured this out, but I went down the crappy class 4 chute I had thought would be easier. Ugh. 7 folks made it to the two Challenge peaks.
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby Bob Burd » Tue Aug 20, 2013 12:48 am

Day 3 - Black Divide
Between McDuffie and Black Giant on the Black Divide is an unnamed 13er we simply called Black Divide. It is way out there. Of the eight participants that made it to the summit, they took anywhere from 15 to 18.5hrs. We were 4hrs in getting to Echo Col by 8am, after which we split up. We all dropped down to the JMT, then Sean and Eric went north towards Muir Pass to climb Black Giant and then follow it to Black Divide. The rest of us went south and took a horrible boulder field 1.5miles-long on the east side of Black Divide to climb the peak from the east. Everyone decided that dropping west off the summit was better than going back that awful boulder field. Somewhere around Black Giant Pass we had some hail and rain for about 20 minutes, but then it subsided and was quite nice until about 7pm. Sean managed to exit first, followed by Jonathan, Pat and myself on either side of 7pm. Eric's map had blown away while he was near the JMT and got confused as to where Echo Col was. He struggled some, but manage to get back around 7:30pm. Daria, Michael G and Tom G were several hours later and got rained on for hours. A very tiring day...
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby Bob Burd » Tue Aug 20, 2013 12:56 am

Day 4 - Keyhole Plateau
Keyhole Plateau is located between Mt Lamarck and Piute Pass, another unnamed 13er, but this one fairly easy. Most of the 20 participants made it to the summit and back before the afternoon thunderstorms are set to begin. There are several ways to approach Keyhole Plateau. Most folks hiked up to Piute Pass and approached from the NW. Three of us went up to Lower Lamarck Lake and then through Wonder Lakes to climb it from the east. This turned out to be the faster route (several miles shorter), but not by a whole lot. Another route goes to Upper Lamarck Lake and the to Sky High Lake to also climb it from the east. 6 or 7 of us used this latter route for descent since it had a nice sand/scree descent to Sky High Lake. Unfortunately between Sky High Lake and Upper Lamarck Lake is a mile-long boulder field that made it a poor choice.

Tomorrow we are heading to the Red Lake TH to climb another 13er (unofficially named Twin Peaks) near Mt. Prater. Weather is supposed to continue to be poor tomorrow. 5am start should help us get up and down before the worst of it.
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby seano » Tue Aug 20, 2013 4:46 am

Bob Burd wrote:then Sean and Eric went north towards Muir Pass to climb Black Giant and then follow it to Black Divide.

Tom G. did as well.

Also, given more information about my 5th metacarpal, peaks will probably not be bagged for a little while. Sorry, folks...
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby Daria » Tue Aug 20, 2013 4:54 am

So bummed I have to work the next 2 days (Tuesday, Wednesday.)

Going to miss you guys a lot!
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby Daria » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:12 am

seano wrote:
Bob Burd wrote:then Sean and Eric went north towards Muir Pass to climb Black Giant and then follow it to Black Divide.

Tom G. did as well.

Also, given more information about my 5th metacarpal, peaks will probably not be bagged for a little while. Sorry, folks...


that's terrible! You can bum around at my place if you need a place to recover. There's the Keough hot springs you can soak in too, 10 min away.

What info did you get about your pinky?
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby Vitaliy M. » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:52 am

seano wrote:
Bob Burd wrote:Sean might have dislocated or broken a finger in the effort. It wasn't looking too good when we saw it back at the TH.

Peak bagging will continue, but blogging will be limited.



Get well! Catching up on blogging is tiring :)
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby Vitaliy M. » Tue Aug 20, 2013 6:09 am

Bob Burd wrote:
3Deserts wrote:Hey, whoa, stop the presses: what the hell is THAT and why haven't I heard of it and why is there like zero information on this?


We wondered the same thing, but the register had half a dozen enties from from folks doing technical climbs. The most prominent appears to be: NE Ridge 5.8 II, FA Dingus Milktoast & Brutus of Wyde.


Were there any people who entered about climbing that face?
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby artrock23 » Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:04 am

seano wrote:Also, given more information about my 5th metacarpal, peaks will probably not be bagged for a little while.


Did you break your 5th metacarpal?

I broke mine in '09 mountain biking, and was in a cast for 6 weeks. No fun, especially after the cast comes off and all the joints are stiff as hell.
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby seano » Tue Aug 20, 2013 2:42 pm

artrock23 wrote:Did you break your 5th metacarpal?

I broke mine in '09 mountain biking, and was in a cast for 6 weeks. No fun, especially after the cast comes off and all the joints are stiff as hell.

Yep. I'm in a splint rather than a cast, but it will still be 6 frustrating weeks.
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby orbitor » Tue Aug 20, 2013 4:50 pm

Bob,
We climbed University Peak by way of University Pass on Saturday, August 17. Since you all are planning on going this way on Day 8, I wanted to share a few observations/give heads-up. That pass is the most forsaken climb I have done so far. Steep and incredibly loose, especially the last 500' of slope. Between four people, spread out, we sent tons of rocks, sand, gravel down the east side. I almost got nailed when one above me released a medium sized rock which gathered speed and was going to make a direct hit. I leaned left at the last moment and it missed me by inches. Another guy below witnessed the whole thing and got so unnerved, he gave up on the summit attempt, dropped down into Center Basin and hiked out by way of Kearsarge Pass - an extra 13 miles and 3000' gain just so he wouldn't have to go back the same way. The rest of us descended via the pass after summiting. Now, going up is bad, but down is a total nightmare. Inevitably you will end up surfing on top of increasingly large and unstable piles of rocks. I slipped and fell a few times, finding myself riding on the pile like on an avalanche. It was terrifying.
Hope everyone in SC makes it through safely. There is no snow or ice on these slopes, just lots of dirt, rocks and dust. No more than 4 people should go up or down the slope at the same time. Distance between individuals should be at least 50 ft, particularly in a vertical direction. Good luck!
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Re: 2013 Sierra Challenge Aug 16-25

Postby seano » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:04 pm

revolvingscimitar wrote:That pass is the most forsaken climb I have done so far.

:lol: Since I first experienced it, I have used the "University Pass Unit" as a measure for crappy scree. Armstrong Canyon is one of the few places I have measured as more than 1.0 UPU.
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