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Couloir Season 2013

Info, conditions and gear related to skiing or riding Colorado Peaks, including the 14ers! Ski/Ride Trip Reports
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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby Tommy Dorr » Sun Apr 28, 2013 10:07 pm

unclegar wrote:
Tommy Dorr wrote:Does anyone have a recent pic of Flying Dutchman on Meeker?


From yesterday 04/27/13. Got home too late today to get a good pic but should be basically the same.

Loft zoom 04_27_2013.jpg


Best I can do from my house. Hope it helps.


Muchas Gracias!!

Great shot, too.
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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby ash-ish » Mon Apr 29, 2013 7:11 am

A beginner in determining avy terrain, the couloir/slope looks to me to be wind loaded, is that a right assessment?

jmc5040 wrote:
Aetna Grand Couloir.jpg

Taken this afternoon

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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby Scott P » Mon Apr 29, 2013 4:30 pm

In case anyone is interested, the north side of Quandary as viewed from the summit of Mt Helen on April 27 2013.

Image

A beginner in determining avy terrain, the couloir/slope looks to me to be wind loaded, is that a right assessment?


Yes. The wind loading is very easy to pick out.
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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby ash-ish » Mon Apr 29, 2013 4:56 pm

thanks scott. Well then let me go ahead and ask you this: If the avy level is rated as moderate by CAIC on this aspect, would you consider it safe to climb?

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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby Scott P » Mon Apr 29, 2013 5:07 pm

If the avy level is rated as moderate by CAIC on this aspect, would you consider it safe to climb?


Not unless you knew what you are doing. You would have to evaluate conditions when you got there and should know how to evaluate conditions.

I was surprised how quickly the snowpack stabilized from the last storm, at least in the Tenmile Range. In most areas on the mountain I climbed, conditions over the weekend were actually quite stable in the early mornings, but much less so in the warm late mornings and afternoons.

With current conditions there at least, it was fairly safe to climb even some of the couloirs in the early morning hours. In the afternoon (or even late morning), it would have been dangerous and I was glad to be down the mountain before the snow heated up.
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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby JE242 » Tue Apr 30, 2013 6:06 am

I was surprised @ the many destructive slides/debrit piles (trees and all) I saw between Copper and Frisco yesterday afternoon. Makes me want to wait a few more weeks for sure.

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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby Elliot » Tue Apr 30, 2013 6:17 am

The Ten Mile Canyon slides ran around 5:45 pm on sunday...I was lucky enough to watch one of them it was pretty cool.

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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby Scott P » Tue Apr 30, 2013 8:11 am

Makes me want to wait a few more weeks for sure.


Depending on the weather patters, it could get worse over the next few weeks. Right now, conditions in several areas seem to be quite stable in the morning, but more dangerous in the afternoon/early evening (which is when you and Elliot saw the slides). As nights get warmer, the morning stability will last a shorter time into the day, and conditions could be more dangerous, especially if there are nights above freezing.

Unless it is during a really cold spell, you probably wouldn't want to be anywhere near a steep slope in the afternoon and it may actually get a bit worse in the next few weeks, especially when things heat up. The cold weather predicted may temporarily stabilize things since little snowfall is expected.

In winter, typically the longer you wait until after a snowstorm, the more stable things become. This is also true in spring immediately after a snowstorm, but in spring, after that initial danger period, warming temperatures often increase the avalanche danger as time passes, even if there hasn't been a recent snowstorm. Don't assume conditions will automatically be stable just because it's been a few weeks since the big storms.

If you ("you" used in a general sense; not directed towards anyone) climb anything, sticking to very early morning hours is the best plan of attack. Spring avalanches can be just as big and deadly as winter avalanches, but luckily they tend to be more predictable. In spring, after the initial dangerous period after a snowstorm (when avalanches can and do happen throughout the day), spring (wet slab) avalanches very rarely happen in the early morning hours. Once sunhit occurs though, avalanche danger immediately rises. Regardless of avy forecast, never assume safe conditions on any afternoon (or late morning), especially if it's warm. On the flip side, afternoon avalanches don't necessarily mean that conditions weren't or won't be stable in the morning, especially in the spring.
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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby SchralpTheGnar » Tue Apr 30, 2013 9:32 am

It's like I always say, "there's not too early a time, for a spring snow climb"

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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby unclegar » Fri May 03, 2013 12:09 pm

Here's a new pic of the Dreamweaver and Loft area of Meeker from today. We got another foot this week in Estes Park so I'm sure this area got at least that much new snow this week.

meeker & loft 05_03_2013.jpg
meeker & loft 05_03_2013.jpg (347.86 KiB) Viewed 969 times


edit: had previously identified as Flying Dutchman. Meeker reference threw me off. :-D
Last edited by unclegar on Tue Jun 11, 2013 12:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby mtlivin » Wed May 08, 2013 8:43 am

Hello- I was wondering what the round trip distance is via the Willow Lakes trail to the What Big Eyes you Have Coulie? Thanks for the help
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Re: Couloir Season 2013

Postby lordhelmut » Wed May 08, 2013 9:12 am

mtlivin wrote:Hello- I was wondering what the round trip distance is via the Willow Lakes trail to the What Big Eyes you Have Coulie? Thanks for the help


its around 9 miles - tops.

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