November 27, 2010

Tender Tri-Tip

The major meltdown with rain a few thousand feet up the mountains had taken its toll - both on the snowpack and our emotional wellbeing.  Then Thanksgiving 2010 brought a beautiful storm with bountiful snow, and all was right in the world again.  A fresh foot cures a lot of ills, but it wasn't quite enough to totally heal the snowpack on Tenderfoot Ridge. 

mw and yours truly set out from the Summit Lake skin track near dawn.  As we ascended, we noticed the icy rain crust not far under the surface.  The top half foot of the beautiful, light and powdery snowpack rested upon a heinous crust.  But, there was enough fluff to keep us happy, especially in the gullies.
Summit Station
We dropped from 3400 ft el on Tenderfoot Ridge down to Tenderfoot Creek and crossed it to the Tri-Tips side.  We couldn't resist the skin track up Tri-Tip.  High up on Tri-Tip, the crust with most of the snow blown off made climbing painfully difficult.
Open Water in Tenderfoot Creek
On inclines greater than 20 degrees, or so, we consistently felt the rain crust on the descents.  Descents were fast on the scritchy base, but holding an edge was easy, and we were joyous flying down the gullies. 

mw contemplates Tri-Tip

No comments: