*
 
 
Whitney Portal Store Message Board
Mount Whitney Reports
                 
Page 16 of 18 < 1 2 14 15 16 17 18 >
Topic Options
#102042 - 07/13/17 03:05 PM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: Kurt Wedberg]
Robert C2 Offline
Member

Registered: 08/08/09
Posts: 5
Loc: Danville, CA
Looking for a conditions update on the Mountaineer's Route.
Permit is July 21-23.

Top
#102043 - 07/13/17 03:08 PM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: Robert C2]
hightinerary Offline
Member

Registered: 01/02/03
Posts: 751
Loc: Maryland
Jim F. kindly posted this yesterday:

"For those interested, on the Mountaineers Route Final 400, the bottom half is clear of snow. There is a wide dry route up the left side next to the wall. Iceberg Lake is still mostly frozen, and there is a lot of snow around it."

Top
#102067 - 07/23/17 02:04 PM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: Kurt Wedberg]
Kurt Wedberg Offline


Member

Registered: 06/21/05
Posts: 994
Loc: Bishop, CA
I was on the MR on July 14 & 22. Conditions were virtually identical both times except snow had melted a bit around Iceberg Lake.

Creek Crossings
Creeks are all swollen. Here are some pictures from some of the crossings:


1st Creek Crossing. The rocks you can normally hop on are completely submerged. Just below them is a small log.


2nd Creek Crossing, first half: Rocks are mostly covered but careful feet placements will keep your feet from getting submerged. Trekking poles are helpful and the rocks aren't slippery.


2nd Creek Crossing, second half: It's harder to keep feet above water. It's possible but difficult smile


Waterfall at 2nd Creek Crossing. Plan on getting sprayed but not soaked smile


Creek Crossing above Lower Boy Scout Lake: Water doesn't quite submerge the biggest rocks. Plan on getting a pleasant gentle shower smile

Mountaineers Route

View from Iceberg Lake on July 22. The main chute (right chute) has snow until about 3/4 of the way up. It has lots of sun cups. Snow is wall to wall. Ice axe & crampons are very helpful. Snow is soft with firm patches dotted throughout. The MR Direct (left chute) is mostly snow.

Final 400 on July 22

The snow patch near the top can be completely avoided. As it melts the water is running down the middle. It makes part of the bottom wet. This doesn't pose a problem unless the freezing level drops and it creates ice, which it hasn't done lately.
_________________________
Kurt Wedberg
info@sierramountaineering.com
http://www.sierramountaineering.com

Top
#102076 - 07/31/17 09:03 AM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: Kurt Wedberg]
RenoFrank Offline
Member

Registered: 08/06/11
Posts: 7
Loc: Nevada
Can I refill my water at Iceberg Lake?

Top
#102077 - 07/31/17 01:32 PM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: RenoFrank]
Jim F Offline
Member

Registered: 12/22/02
Posts: 361
Loc: California
Frank,

From my view from the Mt Whitney summit yesterday morning (Sun July 30), it was evident that the surface of Iceberg Lake was still mostly frozen. But there appeared to be much of the shore that was free of ice. In contrast, Girl Scout Lake was appeared completely clear of ice.

Jim

Top
#102084 - 08/01/17 02:31 PM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: RenoFrank]
So.BayMark Online   content
Member

Registered: 05/13/04
Posts: 533
Loc: Torrance Ca.
iceberg lake
7-29-17

Top
#102085 - 08/01/17 02:36 PM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: So.BayMark]
So.BayMark Online   content
Member

Registered: 05/13/04
Posts: 533
Loc: Torrance Ca.

Top
#102091 - 08/03/17 07:49 AM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: So.BayMark]
RenoFrank Offline
Member

Registered: 08/06/11
Posts: 7
Loc: Nevada
Where is Girl Scout Lake?

Top
#102092 - 08/03/17 08:31 AM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: RenoFrank]
Doug Sr Offline


Member

Registered: 12/16/02
Posts: 2421
Loc: Whitney
Just west of Thor Peak/South of Upper Boyscout Lake in a slight canyon, you will not see the lake unless you travel a few hundred feet south of the route on the way to Iceberg Lake. AKA Barney Lake in the old days like East Face Lake for Iceberg Lake.


Edited by Doug Sr (08/03/17 08:32 AM)
Edit Reason: added Barney...

Top
#102093 - 08/03/17 08:45 AM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: Doug Sr]
BFR Offline
Member

Registered: 07/31/17
Posts: 5
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Here's the snow section of the chute, first from Iceberg and then from directly below. I took these pictures on Sunday 7/30/17. The snow in the chute was pretty soft at around 10:15am. We scrambled up the rocks on the left side of the chute until we had to take the snow section at 13.5k' ft. We then climbed up the snow to about 13.9k' in my estimation.





Edited by BFR (08/03/17 08:47 AM)

Top
#102100 - 08/04/17 07:57 AM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: BFR]
steve thompson Offline
Member

Registered: 07/27/09
Posts: 3
Loc: New York
What equipment did you take? Crampons...ice axe...microspikes? I am considering an SoSHR trek early September and need to decide what equipment to plan.

Top
#102136 - 08/12/17 07:30 AM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: steve thompson]
Kurt Wedberg Offline


Member

Registered: 06/21/05
Posts: 994
Loc: Bishop, CA
Originally Posted By: steve thompson
What equipment did you take? Crampons...ice axe...microspikes? I am considering an SoSHR trek early September and need to decide what equipment to plan.

It's too early to tell what it'll be like in early September. The snow is melting fast. It's probable that enough snow will have melted by early September to no longer need crampons or an ice axe. Keep watching for conditions updates.
_________________________
Kurt Wedberg
info@sierramountaineering.com
http://www.sierramountaineering.com

Top
#102141 - 08/14/17 08:58 AM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: Kurt Wedberg]
graham Online   content
Member

Registered: 10/03/05
Posts: 344
Loc: Irvine, CA
I did the MR on Sun (8/13) under beautiful t-shirt weather conditions (there’s still a bit of smoke from the Sequoia fires in the air). cool

Water crossings are tougher than normal and I got my feet wet on the water-fall crossing. cry

No snow until you get about mid-way up the MR main gully. There’s a ~300’ snow slope that you have to climb thru, luckily, for me, there was a good boot-track. If not it would require some metal to safely ascend in the early morning before the sun soften it up. The final-400 is dry on the left and right (Walt’s Chimney), but there’s still a big snow field in the middle on the upper section.

Photos and detail at:
https://grahamcracker.smugmug.com/2017/Whitney-Muir-Aug-13-2017/

Top
#102142 - 08/14/17 09:26 PM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: graham]
Jeff M Offline
Member

Registered: 03/23/05
Posts: 736
Loc: Rattlesnake Hill, CA
Ha, I was wondering why I didn't see you come down yesterday, but looking at the time stamp of the last pic, you passed Betsy & me on the south side while we were heading up the Elephant Ear. (You could've kept your feet dry on the north side---only at the expense of a little birch bushwhacking...)

Top
#102173 - 08/27/17 04:52 PM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: Jeff M]
amax Offline
Member

Registered: 04/05/10
Posts: 55
Loc: Cali
Bumping it up. Can someone post an update on MR condition? Can the remaining snow in the gully be bypassed or climbed without an ice axe and crampons during a day? Is there any snow left on the traverse section above the notch and if so, can it be navigated safely? I will need to quickly get up in the afternoon of Sep 1 with a heavy pack.

Top
#102180 - 08/29/17 09:57 AM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: amax]
Kurt Wedberg Offline


Member

Registered: 06/21/05
Posts: 994
Loc: Bishop, CA
Originally Posted By: amax
Bumping it up. Can someone post an update on MR condition? Can the remaining snow in the gully be bypassed or climbed without an ice axe and crampons during a day? Is there any snow left on the traverse section above the notch and if so, can it be navigated safely? I will need to quickly get up in the afternoon of Sep 1 with a heavy pack.

I guided two summits of the MR on Aug 22 and 25. On the 22nd we got an early start and were on the snow at sunrise. The 25th was a leisurely climb leaving our camp at Iceberg Lake at 8am so we got to the snow when it was soft. Both times ascending and descending we were happy we had crampons and ice axe.

On the 22nd there was an accident with another party. They were descending in the afternoon when the snow is supposedly softer. They had trekking poles. One person slipped and slid into another member of his party and his trekking pole almost tore his partner's nose off. They self rescued and descended to the Bishop hospital where he got some stitches.

With no ice axe there's no way to stop a slip from turning into a fall. Crampons add much needed traction.

The snow is wall to wall in the gully so there's no way around it. It is softening during the day then freezing at night. These constant freeze/thaw cycles are making that route increasingly slick. The section is only about 100 yards but again there's no way around it. If you take the main chute above Iceberg Lake you'll have a lot longer section of snow. If you take the climber's left variation many call the "Mountaineers Route Direct" which is the approach to the East Face & East Buttress routes you can traverse into the main chute higher up and only be on snow for 100 yards.
Here are a couple pictures and links to the entire photo galleries:

Whitney Aug 20-23
Whitney Aug 24-26

August 25 looking up the MR at the traverse from the Direct into the Main Chute


August 22 just after we removed our crampons on the descent. The 2 people next to the snow were part of a party of 3 who turned around at this spot because they didn't have crampons. The 3rd person in their party is out of view but he went higher along the climbers left side to see if he could get around it but was unsuccessful.


August 22 on the descent traversing back into the MR Direct.


August 22 looking up from Iceberg Lake after we descended. Clouds rolled in but you can see how much snow is in the Main Chute.


August 25: The traverse above the notch. There are a couple of big patches of firm north facing snow. If you go left up the final 400 there's one snow patch but it's off the normal route.


_________________________
Kurt Wedberg
info@sierramountaineering.com
http://www.sierramountaineering.com

Top
#102181 - 08/29/17 11:37 AM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: Kurt Wedberg]
amax Offline
Member

Registered: 04/05/10
Posts: 55
Loc: Cali
Kurt,

Thank you for such a detailed report! Looks like there is plenty of dry rock in the gully to traverse on (I have used this option before), but the part above the notch does look a bit sketchy on the picture. I will be fast packing to the Valley thus no snow equipment. Was hopping to sleep on the summit and get some night time-lapse footage before hitting the JMT proper, but the rolling T-storms may also prompt changes in the initial plan.

Top
#102207 - 09/07/17 01:21 PM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: Kurt Wedberg]
pc Offline
Member

Registered: 03/25/09
Posts: 5
Loc: ca
Anyone have updated condition info? We're going on Sep 16, to descend MR after east buttress. Will hope to not bring snow gear, pending beta.


Edited by pc (09/07/17 01:21 PM)

Top
#102209 - 09/07/17 05:46 PM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: pc]
Kurt Wedberg Offline


Member

Registered: 06/21/05
Posts: 994
Loc: Bishop, CA
I just descended the MR on Sept 5 after climbing the East Face. Crampons were still needed however it's melting out enough now that someday soon there will be enough of a moat on the skiers right side (climber's left side) that it'll be possible to scoot through it on dirt.

Here are pictures. Look to hear the end of this gallery for several pictures of the snow section on the MR: Whitney East Face September 5, 2017
_________________________
Kurt Wedberg
info@sierramountaineering.com
http://www.sierramountaineering.com

Top
#102222 - 09/12/17 12:56 PM Re: Mountaineer's Route Conditions [Re: Kurt Wedberg]
pc Offline
Member

Registered: 03/25/09
Posts: 5
Loc: ca
Thanks Kurt!
Anyone have updated beta since the 5th, from last weekend or during this week?
Hoping for a no-snow descent path.

Top
Page 16 of 18 < 1 2 14 15 16 17 18 >

Moderator:  Bob R, Doug Sr