A buddy and I decided to go after Quandary Peak on 12.30.17 after a third party backed out (rightfully) of our initial Mt. Lady Washington plans. The weather forecast called for clear, unseasonably warm (at that altitude) temperature with a moderate 35 MPH breeze at the summit. With sustained winds over 60 MPH, and wide-spread gusts around 100 MPH, they were a little off on their wind estimates.
Below is a video I took from a somewhat sheltered area right above treeline after we decided to retreat at about 13,100 Ft
The lessons learned:
- Snow is hard, even easier 14ers are hard, so still need to start early and hydrate, get calories. The wind played a huge factor in our ascent speed, but we were ascending at 1/3 -1/4 my summer ascent speed
- Wind is hard, and head-wind is even harder (especially above 60 MPH) … see above
- Snowshoes are easier than post-holing, even if you only post-hole every 50th step or so
- Attach gloves and other stuff that can fly away to something
- I left my dam anemometer at home. I knew I wanted to bring it, and now I am pissed that I do not have an actual reading of the wind speeds we dealt with, just a rough estimate of 70-85 MPH on a couple of the stronger gusts
- Start early, even when you do not think you need to start early. Others summited simply because the started earlier and the wind really picked up beginning around 1 PM.
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