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Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby balance » Wed Jan 20, 2016 9:37 pm

alpinemike

Lugging that camera gear must be a lot of work. All I can say is that you came back with excellent pictures of a great trip. The color and detail are fantastic. Thank you for sharing them with us, so we can enjoy your adventure along with you.

Peace.



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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby alpinemike » Wed Jan 20, 2016 10:32 pm

Thanks Maverick!

balzaccom wrote:Hey rogue! We met you guys on the way up to Goethe Lake, I think! My wife and I had day-hiked there and were hiking back down just after lunch when we met three guys hiking up above Muriel Lake, on the way to Alpine Col. Was that you?


Hey Balzaccom.. This is Mike writing the TR's. I traveled with Rogue the past 2 summers. Not sure if it was you because I can't seem to remember meeting anyone on that day.. but then again that was a while back and my memory gets fuzzy on the days. If you saw 3 guys heading up to Alpine Col on July 11 around late morning then it was likely us.

Thanks to everyone that is enjoying the TR. Hopefully I'll get Week 3 cranked out in the next couple days.
Never put off a backpacking trip for tomorrow, if you can do it today...
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http://mikhailkorotkinphotography.com/
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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby balzaccom » Wed Jan 20, 2016 10:42 pm

Yep---that's when it was. Too bad we didn't do much more than a very quick chat....
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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby dougieb » Wed Jan 20, 2016 11:25 pm

I've really enjoyed reading your trip report. Thanks for putting all the time and energy into sharing with the rest of us. These help me make it through the winter! I've always wanted to go up Goddard Canyon to Martha lake and beyond and now I'm certain I've got to go beyond... That ionian basis looks so punishing but so gorgeous.
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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby balzaccom » Thu Jan 21, 2016 11:57 am

Here's a link to our photos of that hike...

https://picasaweb.google.com/balzaccom/ ... sBasin2015

And a link to the trip report on our blog---which mentions you guys!

https://sites.google.com/site/backpackt ... hreysbasin

By the way, it's fun to notice how quickly that snow melted off Mt Humphreys...
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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby alpinemike » Wed Mar 09, 2016 3:23 pm

Alright here's Week 3... And hopefully Week 4 will be up in the next couple days! A caveat about these 2 weeks... I to my utter and most unfortunate dismay lost all of my digital photos! My card appeared to have corrupted itself for this 2 week period so I basically have only a few film shots that I took and a couple iPhone photos that I shoot while climbing. Therefore Rogue has given me permission to use some of his photos to illustrate these next couple of weeks. I shall credit them.. Alas I hope this never happens to me again and next year for preventative measure I will use smaller memory cards to attempt to prevent this issue. So let's begin!

Day 15- July 17- Ladder Lake to Lower Dusy Basin
Today we made our way down from Ladder Lake fairly easily. We followed a large rock filled chute until it ended in a bench with trees & brush. We followed through mild brush until we reached the steep final descent to the Middle Fork. It was brushy but not horrible. We avoided the granite slabs & were down in about an hour & a half total. We forded the Middle Fork & began the slog up the trail. We stopped & chatted with Dina from last year at the Le Conte Ranger Station. She told us of a rescue that involved none other than our Belgium friend from the spring almost 2 weeks before. He hurt his leg coming off of Muir Pass by Helen Lake. He not only caused quite a commotion but also gratified some large rocks by Muir Pass to signal for help. Dina was not amused as she had to go clean that mess up. We then slogged up the Dusy Branch under intense heat until we reached the first lake. We both decided it was time to get out of the heat so we stopped there. Dinner was delicious… Taco Rice, Bean, & Cheese Burrito. Amid talk of glorious food that we would feast on at Parchers we went to sleep. The wind gusted a bit during the night but nothing major.

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Beautiful LeConte Canyon on our way down with Grouse Meadow.
@ Rogue Photonic


Day 16- July 18- Lower Dusy Basin to Parchers Resort
Yes! We have arrived at Parchers finishing our first section. It was 14 days & quite tough at times but nothing like last year arriving at Parchers.
I'm referencing our section that included the Enchnated Gorge, Goddard Creek and the awful weather from last year in which I arrived at Parchers looking completely like a hobo with tattered pants, a ripped backpack, holes in my shoes and completely famished. Today we pushed over the pass in about 4 hours to here which was a good pace indeed. Rogue told me he though a bear went through camp around 4 A.M. but I slept soundly. Here we finally enjoyed our chili-cheese dog lunch with chips & root beer. Definitely fulfilling in all its glory. Charged up the camera battery & relaxed all day. Ate chips & salsa for dinner & enjoyed another day of good weather. Although it’s threatened to rain for quite a few hours & storms are around. Tomorrow we met up with Derek for more glorious food in Bishop.

Day 17- July 19- Layover
We finally took a nice shower today. A feeling that never gets old after being the mountains for over 2 weeks. Soon after, Derek & Larry showed up. We were very excited to get down to Bishop to order our Carne Asada Burritos & dump Chili-Cheese Fries all over them... A tradition that we started last year. We got down to find a tailor to repair my pack but since it was Sunday I was out of luck so we went to Carl’s Jr. to get our Chili-Cheese Fries. We got there only to be disappointed by the fact that they don’t serve them! What sad sad news that was. Our dreams were shattered but we still managed to enjoy our delicious Burritos. I even had a salad which was easily one of the most refreshing things I have ever eaten. After, we went to Wilson’s & I got new La Sportiva Approach shows that look very well built. Another year and another visit to Wilson's midway through a Summer. Hopefully they last more than 20 days. After a stop to the Vons for some last minute things we were back up the mountain. We got back to Parchers & started to sort all our food as it started to rain. We talked with a gentleman who has climbed in the Sierra since the 70’s. He said he tried Nor Pal & chickened out on the chock stone. Certainly disheartening but we’ll have to see. Eventually dinner time came around & we all finally went to Bishop Creek Lodge. Derek, Larry, & I enjoyed some beer & drinks at the bar & I even got a free drink. Eventually we got our pizza & Chili Cheese Fries & heaven on Earth became a reality. Instead of dumping them on burritos we dumped them on a pizza and truly enjoyed what it means to eat food (real food) for the first time in weeks. We didn’t finish either & to my dismay Larry & Derek threw ours away! We went back to Parchers & did our laundry & drank a few beers until it was time to sleep. Larry & Derek were definitely drunk by the time we went to sleep and that was a funny sight to see. As you can see our layovers are filled with getting food, eating that said food, and thinking about getting more food to eat! That is one thing I know will never change after weeks in the mountains!

Day 18- July 20- Parchers to Dusy Basin
We all got breakfast and went over Bishop Pass into Dusy Basin. It was hilarious to see Larry's pack & his gear as it was all heavy & for car camping. As we made our way up the pass it started to rain quite good. Soon, we were tromping through Dusy to our lake below Columbine Peak. The terrain was fairly mellow but Larry as not having it… He complained about being wet & his feet being tired & wanting to get there. It was certainly comedic, since Rogue and I face conditions like that weekly.. Hell sometimes even daily and it's just all part of the adventure of living in the Sierra. Soon though, we got to our lake & made camp. The rain had stopped & I made do with a shitty site. I fished with Derek for a while & got a few bites & Derek reeled in a few tiny fish. As dinner time rolled around it got cold and windy & we all ate dinner inside our tents. Rain was off and on for a while. Soon we were all asleep expecting more stormy weather as the winds were blowing more clouds in.

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Derek and I waiting for Larry at the trail-head. Good comedy ensued soon after
@ Rogue Photonic


Day 19- July 21- Dusy Basin to Barrett Lakes
We started up Knapsack Pass in the morning under decent skies. Since we were traversing around the going was very rough. Excessively large boulders & plenty of Class 3 moves to go around & through them. Eventually after much toil we made it to Knapsack Pass. The view was grand in both directions… Out to the Palisades & Barrett Lakes & the Black Divide & Muir Trail. Rogue said that we took the easiest way across into Palisade Basin & made it far harder than Thunderbolt or Isosceles Pass. Definitely like us to do something like that. Always making **** harder for ourselves. We climbed up to Columbine Peak via some minor Class 3 but mostly Class 2 rocks. Larry was sketched a couple times but made it just fine. The view was supreme but clouds were building so we said our goodbyes. From there we went down into Palisade Basin. It was definitely a very awesome place with granite shelves all around & the Palisades rising majestically & prominently above. It didn’t take long for it to start raining lightly. Soon, we found an excellent campsite all cleared on a knoll above the largest Barrett Lake. Just as we were pitching our tents the storm really let loose. Everything got wet quickly & I soon shoved everything into my already wet tent floor. Typical Rogue and I adventure.. Rain comes in.. Everything gets wet and you just sit it out. The storm lasted for a good while with decent rain & hail. Not a lot of thunder & lighting though. It got cold soon thereafter. Eventually it let up for dinner only to start back up again & so we fell asleep to dark & stormy skies.

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Columbine Peak View NW
@ Rogue Photonic

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Columbine Peak to the Mighty Palisades!
@ Rogue Photonic

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Barrett Lakes Camp after the storm
@ Rogue Photonic
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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby alpinemike » Wed Mar 09, 2016 3:35 pm

Day 20- July 22- Attempt of North Palisade
We awoke to shitty skies w/ the Palisades in the clouds & not a good start to our climbing of North Palisade that day. We woke later to better weather but still building clouds. We didn’t even start climbing until around 9, which was quite late. The route was straightforward up the chute in the U Notch to the ledges. It was long, steep, and a slog but there was a use trail most of the way. We made it to the ledges & there was an interesting Class 3/4 move to get onto them. The ledges were technically easy & nothing more than a walk along sloped slabs. But… they sketched me out. A fall would be fatal.. most likely. I was glad to be off of them. Now we entered into the 2nd chute & up we climbed until we reached the gnarly vertical Class 4 section. This was hard going up with difficult foot & hand holds & decent exposure. We made it up to the snow field when the weather started to turn. Clouds were coming in fast & we were only 800 FT below the summit but I said it was time to turn back. Rogue was disheartened & so was I but I know that going forward was not a smart idea. The snow itself was not very soft either. Our first obstacle lay in the descent of the Class 4. This was the crux of the day & so far in the whole summer. It took me 8 min total to get down! Definitely got the heart racing. As we got back on the ledges we saw a party of 3 coming down off the U-Notch. Clouds were going up the Notch & the weather turned cold. Once back in the chute we took lunch amid snow flurries! More snow in late July! This was a summer not to be forgotten. We made it down to camp just in time before it started raining again. It rained most of the evening off & on. The peaks were shrouded in clouds once again. I forgot to mention that on the previous day we saw a party of 2 descending North Pal in the storm.. that was quite something to imagine. Our attempt failed to summit the mighty peak but at least we know most of the route now. And we knew that we shall return! We already planned to do it early in July at the beginning of our trip this year.

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Views out from the U-Notch Chute
@ Rogue Photonic

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The Famous LeConte Ledges
@ Rogue Photonic

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I was hugging the wall very close!
@ Rogue Photonic

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Our turn back point right below the chockstones. You might even be able to see one at the top of the photo.

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Definitely the intensest Class 4 I have ever done. Going down was quite challenging
@ Rogue Photonic

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Storm Clouds shooting up the U-Notch. Definitely an impressive sight
@ Rogue Photonic

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The epic evening light on the Palisades after the storm
@ Rogue Photonic
Never put off a backpacking trip for tomorrow, if you can do it today...
Alpine Mike-

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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby alpinemike » Wed Mar 09, 2016 3:49 pm

Day 21- July 23- Barrett Lakes to Lake 11,870 (Below Normal Clyde Peak)
The following day we awoke to still low clouds & agreed it has been the coldest & oddest July in recent years. We started up Potluck Pass and enjoyed a nice view. The lake below was idyllic as we enjoyed lunch. Clouds built all day but seemed as though the storm was clearing. Now we started up what we thought was Chimney Pass. The rock was large & annoying & at the top turned to Class 3. We topped out & had a fine view down towards the Palisade Lakes & Mather Pass… A region I had never before seen. But what lay below us was not pleasant at all. The pass was a notch amid a steep cliff. The downclimbing quickly turned hard. We were on a Class 4 face which was incredibly precarious & with a full pack was undoubtedly some of the hardest climbing I’ve ever done. After cursing this section frequently a large & brutal boulder field lay below along with more annoying Class 3. We finally reached the marshy bottom area agreeing that the pass was **** & that it appeared as though we could cut across to Cirque Pass on our way out. We made the final push to our lake hoping for good camping. We searched all around the lake for developed sites and found not a single one. Clearly this was a very remote lake that sees very few visitors. Most were freestanding that we saw. But finally we found 2 that worked out well enough with a bit of cleanup. The view up to Norman Clyde & Middle Pal was sublime but as usual the tops were in the clouds. The view from the outlet was unbelievably beautiful. All the way up to Mather & down Palisade Creek looking across to the area of Observation Peak & Island Bird Lake. A grand grand view that I will never forget and likely never view from that lake ever again as the trouble to get to it is quite high.

So ends Week 3 of our adventure. A fairly mellow week compared to many that we've had before. A failed summit attempt amid stormy weather.. But North Pal isn't going anywhere and we'll return.

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A called this lake idyllic and it truly is. Right below Scimitar Pass it is right in the heart of the Palisade Region.
@ Rogue Photonic

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Chimney Pass.. Don't take it honestly.. It's not worth your trouble.
@ Rogue Photonic

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The view to the South from Chimney Pass was nice with Mather Pass in the distance,
@ Rogue Photonic

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Do like high level technical Class 3 and some Class 4 with a full backpack weighing 30+ pounds? If so then this is the pass for you.. This spot was definitely a Class 4 face.. Absolutely no foot holds.
@ Rogue Photonic

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Look at all that tasty rock to get down off of Chimney Pass. Enjoy...
@ Rogue Photonic

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Norman Clyde and Middle Palisade shrouded in the clouds again.
@ Rogue Photonic

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Looking to Mather Pass from the outlet of the lake.. What a grand view that I'll never forget!
@ Rogue Photonic
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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby RoguePhotonic » Wed Mar 09, 2016 6:57 pm

I still laugh at being on Columbine Peak on the diving board with Larry too afraid to look at me telling Derek "make him come down". Then me jumping in the air while everyone shouted AHHH!!!! I almost was loosing my balance from laughing. :D

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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby Wandering Daisy » Thu Mar 10, 2016 9:37 pm

"Light on Palisade after storm" is a GREAT photo! I climbed the Le Conte Route in 2005. Your photos bring back memories. We had ropes with us so we rappelled the class 3-4 stuff. I would not have enjoyed down-climbing it! Barrett Basin is one of my favorite spots in the Sierra.
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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby alpinemike » Fri Mar 11, 2016 1:54 am

Wandering Daisy wrote:" I climbed the Le Conte Route in 2005. Your photos bring back memories. We had ropes with us so we rappelled the class 3-4 stuff. I would not have enjoyed down-climbing it!
The Class 4 doesn't really worry me too much anymore.. But what were the chockstones like? That's our biggest concern..
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Re: Adventures With Rogue Photonic 2015 July 3-August 19

Postby alpinemike » Mon Mar 28, 2016 6:24 pm

Sorry about the delay but here's Week 4... Beginning where I left off at the very remote lake below Norman Clyde Peak.

Day 22- July 24- Climb Norman Clyde Peak
The night was extremely wet & quite cold & the sun didn’t rise over the crest until after 8. We finally set out to climb Norman Clyde. Up & up we went until we reached a chute which we climbed for a ways until it branched & we hit hard & sketchy climbing. We quickly crossed over into the right chute & continued to make our way up good but technical Class 3 rock. We approached the top & crossed over some Class 4 slabs & made 1 slight wrong move & went up the Class 4 variation partway. It was quite fun & not too difficult but we found our route which was cairned all the way up. Once we topped out on the summit it was a cold but beautiful mostly clear day. Very few clouds were left in the Sierra. The views stretched from Ritter/Banner all the way to the Kaweahs! It was undoubtedly a beautiful major peak with excellent climbing. I paid homage to Norman himself in my register entry. The way down was fairly straightforward & by 4:20 we were back in camp. Unfortunately there was no service on the peak to obtain a weather report for the coming days. Forgot to mention that the previous day while looking for a place to do my business I discovered an entire galvanized garbage can! I was very creeped out at first by it thinking that there might be something very unpleasant in it. Funny how my mind seems to make up quite the imaginative story for it. Rogue & I found it to be a cache for supplies ranging from food to tent to stove from 1984!! The person was out to do the Palisades Traverse. He never picked it back up, which made me think he might have died. Little did we know but in a few days we would find out more of this story! That evening went by with a good dinner & the prospect of climbing over Cirque & Scimitar Passes to Finger Lake was not good. We seemed to think it would be nice to relax at the lake below Cirque we had passed 2 prior.

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Sustained Class 3 climbing with varying levels of difficulty in the central chute up to Norman Clyde Peak.
@ Rogue Photonic

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Me climbing down and off the Class 4 Variation. Definitely a difficult climbing spot.
@ Rogue Photonic

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What a beautiful peak from all sides.. Definitely a worthy peak for the legend himself.
@ Rogue Photonic

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Such a grand view of the Palisade Lakes an all the sub-ranges in the Sierra including the Kaweah's! You can also see our super remote lake high above the Palisade Lakes. Middle Palisade rises like a true monarch with it's knife-edge fin to the left.
@ Rogue Photonic


Day 23- July 25- Lake 11,870 (Below Normal Clyde Peak) to Lake 11,676 (Below Scimitar Pass)
Today we traversed around the hillside & up to Cirque Pass which was a walk in the park compared to Chimney. What was amazing is that Secor lists Chimney as Class 2 & easier than Cirque. It appeared as there was no other way to cross the entire ridge so Secor must be out of his mind as usual. We joked around & figured to make a TV series titled “Death By Secor”… A good joke but a sad truth that his ratings & descriptions lead us among many to doom. And so we made our way down to the lake below Scimitar Pass & enjoyed relaxing the rest of the day. Several parties went by. One that was doing the PCT but had departed to do a part of the SHR. He & his buddy made their way from Cartridge Pass all the way down the to bottom & up to Mather & down to the Palisade Lakes & over Cirque & were trying to get over Thunderbolt that day!! Insane to think of how far that is. But, given that he was finishing the PCT as the last of the Triple Crown it's not as surprising that he would be one to be able to pull a day like that. The previous night at Norman Clyde Lake was very cold… 34oF or so. Hoping that tonight would be much warmer considering it was the end of July and not early June!

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Such a nice view before heading up Cirque Pass. We'll be traveling through here this year en route to do the Muro Blanco.
@ Rogue Photonic

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This was a really nice camp albeit there was no shade... A common theme among almost every campsite on this section. Treeless and barren the Palisades section was definitely living up to the reputation we thought it would have. Palisade Crest looms in the back.
@ Rogue Photonic
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