Baldy Bowl 1-8-11
With headlamps on, we started at around 6am from Manker Flat parking area. Parts of the road leading to San Antonio Falls were covered with ice. So some caution was needed until we got to the rockier portions after the hairpin going away from the falls.
At the register, we shed some layers, ditched our headlamps, and carried on. The snow coverage on the trail itself was mixed until about a half mile in. Then it covered everything. There wasn’t any ice, and the snow was already a little slushy. So crampons weren’t needed. Just a little extra caution.
Charging up to the Ski Hut, we med up with the group from the San Gabriel Mountains Discussion Forum group who were holding an informal training clinic. We hung around for about an hour here meeting others and just waiting around for the last group members to get up to the Ski Hut. Unfortunately though, the group started up past our cutoff time of 9am. So Tim and I decided to leave the group and do our own thing. First off, we should his friend how to self-arrest. This was made difficult with the warm sun softening the snow a lot.
After about a half hour of this, we started our climb up the center. I’m not sure on the names of the chutes, I’m going to have to find those out later. But our goal was to head right up the center chute (where the rock formation comes to a saddle in this picture).
We were making some pretty good time up it too. Tim did a good job creating the path for us to follow. After about 40 minutes, we were three quarters or so up the Bowl. This is where Tim wanted to change course and start another approach up a different chute. I decided to stick to the original route, while Tim broke left and went about his approach.
Truong and I went up the intended chute. In the chute, the snow was just powder. I was pretty much post-holing mid-calf or up to my knee with each step. This got pretty tiring. On top of that, the snow was doing a good job of balling up on my crampons. This was extremely tiring and annoying. But at least at this steep portion, I wasn’t worried about a painful slide down the mountain if I messed up.
Finally at the top of the chute, it was pretty gusty. We Baldy looked like a chimney with the way the snow was coming off of it. Baldy itself looked pretty miserable too.
We were done for the day. No summit today. Been there, done that. Instead, we traversed the lip and started the glissade down.
Second half of the glissade:
This entry was posted on Sunday, January 9th, 2011 at 11:28 pm and is filed under Photography, Trip Report, Winter Hiking/Mountaineering. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.