adventure on jicarilla

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adventure on jicarilla

Postby scotthsu » Sun May 03, 2009 9:49 pm

We had quite the adventure on Jicarilla today.

PS. Kerry, sounds like you made the right call going to Williams Lake!
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Postby clmbnski » Sun May 03, 2009 10:24 pm

Well at least you got to ski it. I attempted it solo last friday and got shut down not far from the trail. It was the second time I tried it and found the snow conditions this time similar to the last: impossible: sloppy, high friction, wet snow that you sink in even while skinning, and deadfall every 10 feet.

Too bad though, the line does look great from down on the trail. I was thinking that it may be easier to approach from the south, by hiking up a (hopefully) dry southfacing slope. But I investigated that approach and found the trail that headed that way full of crappy unskinnable snow. I guess timing is everything.

Chris [/img]
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Postby Bob » Sun May 03, 2009 10:57 pm

Well, that sounds like it was...character-building. The access routes to that area seem to be fully heinous any time there's snow involved. The TR was a good read - congrats on surviving in good humor.
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Postby MarkM » Mon May 04, 2009 8:19 am

Did that shot about 15 years ago - looks like the trees and brush have filled it in a little!
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thanks for the comments

Postby scotthsu » Mon May 04, 2009 10:18 am

chris, i saw what i thought were some tracks low down in the chute; wonder if they were yours. we probably should have turned back earlier, but we're just not used to getting shut down. timing is definitely everything. i had wanted to do this route in early april; we were all set to go, and then i got nervous about the snow conditions at that time since this route involves spending a loooong time in a terrain trap. we literally called the trip off at 11pm the night before.

bob, we find that our "character-building" trips generally remain among our more memorable ones, including our recent road epic on chicoma. :oops:

mark, awesome that you did this shot in the past! i'd say the brush has filled in since then. you couldn't really see the brush from recent google satellite imagery, so i got lulled into a false sense of optimism that we'd have a bushwhack-free approach. such is life.
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Postby Bob » Mon May 04, 2009 6:13 pm

Check out Chris' pictures from the trip:
http://www.nnmae.org/cgi-bin/sprec.cgi?sprecid=122
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Postby scotthsu » Mon May 04, 2009 7:36 pm

Bob, thanks for alerting me to Chris' pictures. We climbed and skied the chute in the 2nd picture. The NW aspect looks like the better ski, but you'd have to contend with more bushwhacking at the bottom. I think the NW aspect is what Hugh's gang did back in 2005.
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Postby Bob » Mon May 04, 2009 8:55 pm

scotthsu wrote:...The NW aspect looks like the better ski, but you'd have to contend with more bushwhacking at the bottom.

If the bushwhacking were any worse than this aspen reproduction thrash, I think you'd be courting madness:
Image

I'd give that a heinousity rating of 9 out of 10. Maybe more.
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bushwhacking

Postby scotthsu » Mon May 04, 2009 9:02 pm

heinousity, now that's a legitimate rating criterion for ski approaches. notice i said "more" and not "worse" :wink:
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Postby Matt » Tue May 05, 2009 9:12 am

scotthsu wrote:Bob, thanks for alerting me to Chris' pictures. We climbed and skied the chute in the 2nd picture. The NW aspect looks like the better ski, but you'd have to contend with more bushwhacking at the bottom. I think the NW aspect is what Hugh's gang did back in 2005.



Scott- yeah we did the major N-NW facing slide path in 2005. Tons of bushwacking at the bottom, but much better open skiing up high. Apparently I need to ask Hugh what the gang sign is...
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hugh's gang

Postby scotthsu » Tue May 05, 2009 10:11 am

Matt wrote:Apparently I need to ask Hugh what the gang sign is...


Hugh's gang = NM Chapter of Telemark Hardcore (Reformed)! :D
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Postby clmbnski » Wed May 06, 2009 7:57 am

The pictures of skinning thru the nightmare of aspens, brush, and logs crack me up. Of course at the time I wasn't laughing and had you been down at the trail you would have heard some expletives echoing off the cliffs opposite the avy path.

My tracks left the trail right after the stream crossing and trended climbers right of the path. I had hoped to bootpack up frozen consolidated snow to an open area to the right of the avy path, and skin from there around to the NW aspect. Last year I hiked/skinned the avy path itself. This year, I thought that the forest to the right of the path might be a better way to go with less saplings and debris than the path itself. I was wrong.
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Trampas Lakes

Postby MarkM » Sun May 10, 2009 11:18 pm

Well - just for giggles, we tried to go up to Trampas Lakes this morning (Sunday). There is some good skiing around the lakes - but in the past I have gone later in May or early June.

We got a late start, and it was quite warm (in the 60's!) - so I didn't expect much. Other than some small patches of snow, the trail was pretty melted out up to the base of the avi chute, and beyond another 1/4 mile or so. Lots and lots of dead-fall, though. We took a look at the base of the chute - definitely grown in from what I remembered! I realized the last time I was there was actually in the mid or late 80's, probably a few years after the slide had run big, and the aspens then were "seedlings" barely sticking out of the snow, and you could still see all the downed timber from the slide (most of it was on the north side of the creek).

Anyhow - the snow has melted up a bit from the bottom of the chute. We splashed across the stream and thrashed our way on up the trail. After a while, we hit the snow - which was (needless to say) quite soft. Not continuous enough to skin, but too much for good walking, and unpredictable in how much support it would give. After another tedious hour or so the post-holing got to be a pain, we lost the trail, and we realized that even if we got up to the lakes, it would be pretty late to ski anything, and it would be a bitch getting back down.

So we gave it up, went back to the car, and got Blizzards at DQ.

Sigh - maybe we'll try again when we can be sure that the trail to the lakes is melted out, or if it gets cold...I'd sure like to get to know this area a little better.
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Re: Trampas Lakes

Postby scotthsu » Mon May 11, 2009 8:50 pm

MarkM wrote:Sigh - maybe we'll try again when we can be sure that the trail to the lakes is melted out, or if it gets cold...I'd sure like to get to know this area a little better.


me too, especially the slopes below Sheepshead, but i think i'm done humping skis on my back this season after hiking 2 miles up toward Mt Antero (CO) in ski boots yesterday and seeing no skinnable snow. skis never even came off our packs :(
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