Cloudripper Attempt 8/1/15 | High Sierra Topix  

Cloudripper Attempt 8/1/15

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Cloudripper Attempt 8/1/15

Postby Mradford » Tue Aug 04, 2015 3:32 pm

After watching the weather last week, we decided that we would rather camp in the front country and do day hikes instead of backpacking over Shepherd's pass. We drove up to the South Lake trail head on Friday evening and slept in the parking lot. We hit the trail the next morning after we made, and crushed, some breakfast burritos and 99 cent Mazel coffee. When you love fishing and climbing mountains, picking routes can prove difficult. So of course we decided to make a loop through the entire area while also trying to summit. The trail up to long lake was muddy and crowded. The theme of this trip was the crowd factor, I can't believe how many people were in the back country, and how much trash there was. We made it to the Ruwau lake turnoff quickly and headed up the stairs that lead to the lake. We reached the lake and found half of a deer laying on the shore.
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We refilled our water and headed up to the saddle between Ruwau lake and the upper Chocolate lake. We finally got our first up close view of our route up Cloudripper. What an awesome peak!

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After an hour or so of horrible talus hopping, we finally made it to the base of the chute and started making our way up. We also noticed the clouds starting to form to the north and west. Entering the chute was unreal. It was one of the most amazing places I have seen. The climb wasn't too technical, just lots of talus and scree of all sizes and shapes which made it slow moving. Meanwhile, the clouds around the Sierra started to get larger and more vertical.

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Image Yes, he is climbing in those.

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About an hour later, and a few hundred feet from the summit the sky started looking pretty grim and as we rested we decided not to chance being stuck in the chute or on the summit if the storm hit. Heading back down the chute in rain would have been disastrous. We started making our way back down the loose scree and talus filled chute very slowly. Towards the bottom fatigue from farting around on talus for 4 hours started to take it's toll. We made it to the upper chocolate lake and found a couple who were planning on submitting the following day. They said they had heard us in the chute for the past few hours. We rested for 15 minutes then made our way back down the trail. 30 minutes after reaching the upper lake, the storm hit and we were grateful that we had made the right decision. The rest of the hike was uneventful as we made our way back to the car in the rain, stopping occasionally to get a couple casts in at a few lakes. As much as we hated to turn around, none of us were that upset, as climbing around in the chute was an amazing experience. We know we will be back to tackle this guy another time. We headed down the mountain and back in to Bishop and CRUSHED some BBQ at Holy Smoke Texas Style BBQ.
Last edited by ERIC on Tue Aug 04, 2015 8:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: LOL. Really appreciate the effort with the [r/img] inserts! But not necessary with photobucket. If from elsewhere with .jpg files, begin with [rimg] and end with [/rimg]. =)



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Mradford
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Re: Cloudripper Attempt 8/1/15

Postby maverick » Tue Aug 04, 2015 4:02 pm

Nice photo's, the carcass one is pretty cool, as are the ones in the chute, thanks.
HST= Wilderness Adventurer who knows no bounds, except for their own imagination.

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Re: Cloudripper Attempt 8/1/15

Postby Rockyroad » Tue Aug 04, 2015 4:47 pm

Looks like less than half a deer. :)
Great photos and TR.
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Re: Cloudripper Attempt 8/1/15

Postby MN2CAPisco » Tue Aug 04, 2015 9:21 pm

Great TR, looks like that awesomely-named mountain has had quite a bit of HST traffic this year. Good on you to call the weather-induced turn-around, that summit is no place to be caught in a storm. Cool to see some photos of that chute, that was my desired route earlier this year but it was full of snow which resulted in a similar reevaluation of safe practices to the summit. Like you say, that summit block will still be around for the next go-around!
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Re: Cloudripper Attempt 8/1/15

Postby austex » Wed Aug 05, 2015 4:58 am

35 years ago I was at the base of Cloudripper at thunder and lightning Lake. I was fishing and heard somebody yelling hey, hey! I looked around and didn't see anybody. Much to my surprise there were two people at the summit of Cloudripper. I looked at my topo map and just couldn't figure how anybody could have gotten up there. It is a pretty awesome place from what I understand and what I have seen. Yes it will be there for you the next time around. And I'd never want to be caught up there when it was ripping through the clouds.
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