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Late August/Early September Mountaineering?

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Late August/Early September Mountaineering?

Postby Stevendanger75 » Fri Jun 24, 2011 11:35 am

My good friend/climbing partner and I want to get out and do some summer mountaineering/Peak Bagging (no technical 5th class) this summer, however the only dates we have open are from the 25th of August to the 15th of September.

Where will there be enough snow during this time frame to enjoy ourselves (i.e. NOT having to wade through a sea of talus and scree)? We are comfortable with Moderate Snow as well as the use of ice axes. We haven't had much practice with crampons but still know how to use them properly.

I am thinking the Mountaineer's Route of Mt. Whitney or somewhere in the Kaweah Area. Any other suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Thank you

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Re: Late August/Early September Mountaineering?

Postby giantbrookie » Sun Jun 26, 2011 11:58 am

Even after a heavy winter such as this one, most of the snow on west and south-facing slopes will be long gone as of 25 August. Reasonable amount of snow? Mt Lyell (easy class 3 with best route) would fit the bill, I'd guess. Even in late season, this is not one of those talus/scree grinds. Mt. Ritter via the standard Ediza L. route (class 3) might be good with reasonable snow coverage in late August. Mt Abbot's NE couloir may actually hold a veneer of snow over the ice until late August this year, which is a plus because without it that can become glazed black ice before you reach the rock "turnoff point" out the right hand side o the couloir on the standard route (class 3 in my opinion, has been "grade inflated" higher than this in some recent guides--still 3rd class in Secor and Roper, though). The Kaweahs are not the place to go if you're looking to avoid nasty loose rock in general and certainly not for mixed snow/rock light mountaineering in late August.
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