Sunday, May 1, 2011

Mt. Stanley-North Face

It's been quite a turbulent life lately so I'm running a bit behind with my posts. Last Wednesday we had a real fun day out with a bunch of good people on a big face. We hit Mt. Stanley during a snowy day and got some fresh powder on it's steep north face. I did not get a chance to make nice pictures due to the white out conditions we had most of the day, but I hope these images give you a glimpse of what was going on up there.
The approach was more involved than I thought, for about 2 hours one must travel under constant objective hazards like seracs, huge cornices, man eating crevasses and 40 degree avalanche slopes ending on top of unsupported cliffs. One advantage of the bad weather was that you can't see what lurks above you.

A rare weather window allowed us to get a glimpse of the beautiful corn snow objective on the other side of the valley, the stunning south face of Mt. Whymper.
After all the hazards on the approach it was quite weird to have a comforting feeling in the 45-50 degree north face , I guess Marty was relieved too.
Jeff and Richard (Ducky) also came along, as well as Craig McGee. This made a total of 5 of us which was good for boot packing up the face and also made for fun conversations.

Ducky proudly presents his hair style, or should I say the lack of it. He says his head is the solar panel which charges the sex machine below. Not much charging going on that day though, hope he has a built in back up generator somewhere.

Marty Schaeffer in the summit white out. He did win the award of the best looking face under the ugliest hat, way to go!

Great snow and bad visibility on the way down.
As a 'bonus of the day' we decided to ski straight below the face all the way to the top of the ice climb "Nemesis", from there a sloping ledge brought us back to the main slopes past the Killer Cave. This way is less exposed to the hazards I described above and gives you better fall line skiing too. If I do the face again, I will also go up this way.

No comments: