Buying Gear?  Click Here
Buying gear? Please use these links to help 14ers.com:

More info...

Other ways to help...
 Peak(s):  Mt. Wilson  -  14,246 feet
 Post Date:  05/08/2010
 Date Climbed:   05/05/2010
 Posted By:  Easy Rider

 Slate Creek Cirque & The Boxcar Couloir   

5/5/10

The Wilsons are a bit isolated from the major chain of mountains that surround Telluride, and new snowfall amounts were modest, and settled on Monday. The post-storm wind was going to be my main concern.

I let Tuesday morning go, and spent the day on several side trips into Illium, Ophir, and Trout Lake. Admiring the tracks on Yellow and San Muquel. The last place I had cell reception was the Ames' lookout (see El Diente report). A Honda Pilot was parked at the TH Tuesday, and I was guessing they were after the Boxcar Couloir.

By afternoon white plumes rose from the peaks a hundred feet or more. It was supposed to be worse on Wednesday, when I would meet Tim Halbakken (see Mt. Massive & Quandary reports). It was possible t I let another opportunity go to waste, but I rationalized that I would rather go with an old friend in bad weather, than alone on the best day. From my introduction on Table Mountain to dabblings in the Black, he has been one of my main climbing mentors.

Did I sleep through all my alarms? No, 2:50. He was early. Brrrr! It was another stiff freeze, and barely a puff of wind. Excitement replaced apprehension, and we set out across the bridge to the Cross Mountain trail, catching the first meadow. The last group put a track in immediately. This seemed a little premature. We found my track at 11111 in about 40 minutes. It looks like a three way junction where a right turn meets a spur heading back down to the left. My trail was still there, barely. A pale stripe here and there, remembering a dead tree. It was a luxury. When the trail ended at my last waypoint, about 10,900 we compared GPS readings (my piece of showing a hundred feet lower every time). Gladstone was visible at this point, but going off the peaks for orientation was asking for trouble. It can be tricky distinguishing South Wilson from Cross Mountain since the view is never complete, even if you have the moon. Oh yeah, the moon. From this point on I put the moon on my axe point over my left shoulder to hold NW, and descending into the last coolie of Cross Creek. HA! I could have easily tried to follow it, but did one more up and over. Slate creek is more expansive. We stayed to the right side, holding the line through the last rows of trees, passing ruins of a snow shelter. Switching to the left side of the basin, and skinning up to Gladstone.

Image




Sunrise on South Wilson

Image




Sunhit at the Gladstone corner

Image





Slate Creek Cirque

Image





Gladstone

Image





spotting the summit pyramid

Image





We went right here since rocks were flying out of the chute on the left. This set us up for a tough finish on the catwalk. This twenty or thirty foot section is exposed on both sides. Fatal on the right, crippling on the left. Of course ski boots and crampons added another element of difficulty to these gentle moves. I had to take my pack full of bricks (full water bottles) off for a tall move in the middle of all this, Tim tied a sling to my pack and we hoisted it up together.

Image





Image





Image





9:00 am

Image





Image





Image




The Davenport / Konsella line was pretty much out of condition.

Image




The Brennen / White line was in a little better, but I would have to separate from Tim since his skis were back on the northeast col.

Image





Spotting from the ridge.

Image





The summit was caked, but the chute dried up before the junction with the main couloir dropping from the south col. I kick down as much snow into it as I could into the end, and made it another few feet before unbuckling and traversing about fifteen feet across to the col.

Image



Image



Image



Image



Image



Ripping out of the upper couloir.

Image




We were both thinking that the Boxcar was probably getting a bit too soft, but after cruising over to check, we decided to give it a go. So glad we did!

Image



Image



Image



Image



Image





We had a great run and a nice cruise out, nipping over to the west side of Slate Creek before heading back into the woods and catching our track.

Image





TH mess.

Image

Another great day, and I couldn't have had a more perfect finish to the San Juan 14ers. Big two left.



Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
 


  • Comments or Questions
taylorzs


Nice!     2011-02-04 17:22:16
thanks for the TR, i am headed there in a couple days... only a couple more to go for you!


BillMiddlebrook


Nice.     2010-05-08 09:17:33
Excellent job and photos!


benners


Nice Work     2010-05-08 14:18:55
and thanks for the conditions update, I‘ve always thought that route would be a fun way to ski Wilson. Good luck with your remaining two!


lodgling


looks like     2010-05-09 04:13:15
you caught boxcar in great conditions. Image #7 brings back that last 20-30ft to the top a bit too fresh for me. Where‘s the gag reflex smiley. No option but up at that point I guess and not really a great one at that.


PKR


Sweet     2010-11-30 10:28:50
Way to finish the Wilson's! Thanks for the TR.


SchralpTheGnar


nice work dude     2010-05-10 09:47:25
I like yer style dude.



   Using your forum id/password. Not registered? Click Here


Caution: The information contained in this report may not be accurate and should not be the only resource used in preparation for your climb. Failure to have the necessary experience, physical conditioning, supplies or equipment can result in injury or death. 14ers.com and the author(s) of this report provide no warranties, either express or implied, that the information provided is accurate or reliable. By using the information provided, you agree to indemnify and hold harmless 14ers.com and the report author(s) with respect to any claims and demands against them, including any attorney fees and expenses. Please read the 14ers.com Safety and Disclaimer pages for more information.

© 2014 14ers.com®, 14ers Inc.