Tuesday, June 28, 2011

RMNP Conditions Report - 6/28/2011

Below are a few different recent reports our office has received from our guides.

Longs Peak
"I went up the North Face of Long's on Friday (6/24).  There is a lot of snow out there.  We were walking across patches of snow after the first mile on the trail.  There is plenty of water out there; the trail from Granite pass to the Boulderfield has a stream running in places.  The campsites in the Boulderfield are free of snow.  We walked up rocks to snow about 200 meters below the cables.  The snow was soft at 7am.  No major wet slides around but some pin wheeeling of rocks. Mostly snow through the cables with a touch of exposed rock.  I saw three bolts exposed and used two for anchors.  The very top one is still buried.  I would guess the snow is melting fast and we do not seem to be getting cold nights.  I bet the North Face is a safer choice until the Keyhole melts out some more." - R. Hunter

The Petit
"I climbed the Petit yesterday (6/26). The trail in is mostly dry until Loch Vale, after which it is almost all snow. At around 7am we found the snow slope below Lake of Glass to be frozen solid. There were descent steps but it was very slippery in approach shoes. A pair of aluminum crampons and some trekking poles would be nice. There is a bunch of avi debris spread across the trail there also, including some descent size trees which apparently came down from above the cliff higher up.

There is still a lot of snow at the base of the Petit. We ended up starting further to the left and higher up than I have in the past, and we had to traverse right across about 20ft of soft snow to get to the rock. The route and raps were completely dry. The hike out was very wet." - C. Burk

Dreamweaver and the Notch Couloir
"Climbed Dreamweaver and the Notch yesterday (6/26). Dreamweaver is in pretty good shape. Great bootpack to bottom of first constriction. First two are all rock, second two are snow/ice. Only one tool needed, no screws. I descended Lamb's Slide to get to Broadway, mostly snow. Notch was wet snow @ 6am. Good bootpack going up it, some ice @ dogleg. South ridge to summit was mostly dry. North Face is still snowy, echo Russell in that it's the easiest choice up Long's right now. Mostly kicking steps." - M. Soucy

Dreamweaver updated:
"Guided Dreamweaver today (6/28). The route is still in great shape. Things heating up there quickly, we left the Ships Prow Bivy at 4:30am and I would not have wanted to start any later. Lower snow slopes getting into the couloir proper were punchy, but got better the higher you went. Still good quick descending down the Loft.

Still enough snow to skirt the left side of Chasm lake. Looks like snow all the way up The Flying Dutchman still as well.

Heres a photo of one of the upper cruxes of Dreamweaver and one of Meeker/Loft." -E. Whewell

"A bunch of us climbed Notchtop yesterday (6/26) via Spiral route.  Lots of loose blocks crept towards the edge of ledges with the recent melt-out.  There is still a bit of snow in the east meadows up high but only 50' or so; the upper snow is avoidable.  Strong winds kept us off the raps, we descended off the w. Ridge which was all dry until the descent gully which is very full of snow.  Large cornices are over the NE face and eventually above the descent gully further down, definitely the one of the biggest hazard of the day up there.  Its possible to thread the needle and keep it safe but still heads up.  We took crampons and an axe each; never used the crampons but the axes were great to have for the descent." - A. Councell

Sundance - off Trail Ridge
"I was on the North Face of Sundance on Saturday (6/25) with a client for snow skills / couloir climb.  This area is about a quarter mile east of the slopes that people ski and refer to by the same name.  Great access and nice variety of options.  The climbers right options are free of cornice hazard.  (The central couloir has a good size cornice still.)  We were on snow at 6:30 am and were getting 3-5cm boot pen at ~12K ft, (N and NE aspects).  Only got worse from there.  No freeze overnight." - M. Lipscomb

This is a great time to get out in the mountains.  There is still a ton of snow to be climbed and the alpine rock season is now here.  Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or if you'd like to set up an outing with one of our guides.

Thanks and be safe out there,

Colorado Mountain School Staff
800-836-4008 x3

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