December 2011               Peak Climbing Section, Loma Prieta Chapter, Sierra Club            Vol. 45 No.12

http://peakclimbing.org - www.facebook.com/peakclimbi




 

 


General Meeting

        

 

PARTY TIME!!

christmas-party.jpg

Photo Credit: Ricky's Sports

 

Come to the 36th annual PCS Festivus party, on Tuesday, December 13, 2011, at 7:00 p.m., at the Whisman Station clubhouse, at 420 Kent Dr., Mountain View.


Bring a potluck dish that you will be proud to share with your fellow climbers. Hereís your assignment: A – D - appetizer E – I - salad J – N - main course O – S – dessert T – Z – beverages.

 

In addition, feel free to bring your alcoholic beverage of choice, and of course, since we are a green organization, bring your own plate, cup, and eating utensils. And for those of you who object strenuously to being told what to bring, no problem! Just bring whatever you feel like bringing - we won't be checking up on you!


Bring 35 mm slides or a CD or flashdrive with 10 or 12 of your most thrilling climbing photos, from this year or from long ago. Bring your family and friends. Bring a swimsuit and a towel if you envision yourself dipping in the clubhouse hot tub.

 

Click here for directions:

Aaron Schuman's - The Whisman Station Clubhouse

 

Editor's Notes

 

Many congratulations to our new officers for 2012:

      Rod McCalley, Chair

      Terry Cline, Vice-Chair

      Sassan Hazeghi, Treasurer

Thanks for offering to lead our club! We're looking forward to a great year!

Judy

Special Event

 

Fred Beckey: Climbing In North America

 

The Sierra Club Peak Climbing Section has the distinct honor of hosting legendary climber, Fred Beckey, on Wednesday, December 7 at 7pm at Sports Basement Sunnyvale. We hope you will join us! Sierra Club members always get a 10% discount at Sports Basement.

 

Click here for directions to Sports Basement:

The Summit Room at the Sports Basement

 

 

PCS Trip Calendar

These are required statements.

Note: CST 2087766-40. Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California.

Note: All Sierra Club trips require you to sign a Liability Waiver.

http://www.sierraclub.org/outings/chapter/forms/signinwaiver.pdf

 

December 17 - Backcountry Ski Tamarack Peak

Leader: Louise Wholey

 

January 7 - Junipero Serra

Leader: Jesper Schou

 

January 14, 15 - Backcountry Ski Jakes, Bliss

Leader: Louise Wholey

 

February 11, 12 - Donner Summit Dayhikes On Snowshoes

Leader: Joe Baker

 

February 18, 19 - Backcountry Ski Mount Rose

Leader: Louise Wholey

 

March 17, 18 - Backcountry Ski Sierra Buttes

Leader: Louise Wholey

 

 

 

 

March 24, 25 - Cone Peak

Leader: Joe Baker

 

April 14 - 15 - Backcountry Ski Bridgeport

Leader: Louise Wholey

 

May 12, 13 - Backcountry Ski Sierra

Leader: Louise Wholey

 

PCS Trip Details

Backcountry Ski Tamarack Peak

Goal:  Tamarack Peak (9897')

Location: Near Lake Tahoe

Date: December 17

Leader: Louise Wholey     

 

Come join us for the second in our new Tahoe Backcountry Skiing Series. Typically Tamarack Peak (near Mt. Rose) has the best early snow. December is often the best powder. Requires advanced skiing skills (resort black diamond), avalanche
training. Randonee or Telemark skis, climbing skis, avalanche beacon, shovel, and probe.

Leader: Louise Wholey (louisewholey at yahoo.com)

To sign up send $8 for leader training to Louise Wholey, 21020 Canyon
View Drive, Saratoga, CA 95070.

 

Junipero Serra

Goal:  Junipero Serra (5862')

Location: Ventana Wilderness

Dates: January 7

Leader: Jesper Schou

 

This hike is co-listed with the PCS and DHS. Named after Friar Junipero Serra, the founder of the Missions, this peak is the highest in the Santa Lucia range. The walk up is mildly strenuous with an altitude gain of 3900+ feet and six miles ONE way on trail, but the view is well worth the effort.
Pouring rain cancels.

Carpool: Cottle & H/A 85 Park & Ride at 7:00 am or call leader for trailhead information.
Leaders: Jesper Schou schou@sun.stanford.edu; Ron Karpel, ronny@karpel.org

 

 

 

Backcountry Ski Jakes, Bliss

Goal:  Jakes Peak (9186'), Bliss Peak (8658')

Location: Near Lake Tahoe

Dates: January 14, 15

Leader: Louise Wholey

 

Come join us for our third of the Tahoe Backcountry Skiing Series. Ski above Lake

Tahoe on steep powder runs. Requires advanced skiing skills (resort black diamond+), avalanche training. Randonee or Telemark skis, climbing skis, avalanche beacon, shovel, and probe.

Leader: Louise Wholey (louisewholey at yahoo.com)

To sign up send $8 for leader training to Louise Wholey, 21020 Canyon
View Drive, Saratoga, CA 95070.

 

Donner Summit Dayhikes On Snowshoes

Goal:  Mt. Judah (8245'), Boreal Ridge

Location: Donner Summit, near Truckee

Dates: February 11, 12

Leader: Joe Baker

 

We will stay at the Southbay Ski Club lodge at Donner Summit, and do day trips. One day, we will climb Mt. Judah, and the other day we will do a loop from Highway 80 to
Highway 40, following the PCT on the way there and coming over Boreal
Ridge on the way back. Destinations may change based on snow conditions. Contact Judy Molland at judy@judymolland.com.

 

Backcountry Ski Mount Rose

Goal:  Tamarack Peak 9897'), Mt. Houghton (10,490'), Mt. Rose (10,776')

Location: Near Lake Tahoe

Dates: February 18, 19

Leader: Louise Wholey

 

Come join us for our fourth of the Tahoe Backcountry Skiing Series. This tour is long and strenuous, definitely not designed as a first tour of the season! Requires advanced skiing skills (resort black diamond), avalanche
training. Randonee or Telemark skis, climbing

 

 

 

 

 

skis, avalanche beacon, shovel, and probe.

Leader: Louise Wholey (louisewholey at yahoo.com)

To sign up send $8 for leader training to Louise Wholey, 21020 Canyon
View Drive, Saratoga, CA 95070.

 

Backcountry Ski Sierra Buttes

Goal:  Sierra Buttes (8591')

Location: North of Lake Tahoe

Dates: March 17, 18

Leader: Louise Wholey

 

Come join us for our fifth of the Backcountry Skiing Series, this one slightly north of the Tahoe area. Depending on conditions this may be an overnight ski trip or a long one-day outing. Requires advanced skiing skills (resort black diamond), avalanche training. Randonee or Telemark skis, climbing skis, avalanche beacon, shovel, and probe.

Leader: Louise Wholey (louisewholey at yahoo.com)

To sign up send $8 for leader training to Louise Wholey, 21020 Canyon
View Drive, Saratoga, CA 95070.

 

Cone Peak

Goal:  Cone Peak (5155')

Location: Ventana Wilderness, Limekiln Campground

Dates: March 24, 25

Leader: Joe Baker

 

We will climb Cone Peak from Highway 1. Cone Peak is the most spectacular mountain on the Big Sur coast of California. It is the second highest mountain (Junipero Serra Peak is higher) in the Santa Lucia Range.

The trip is officially on-trail but somewhat strenuous, and parts of the trail are rough to non-existent.  On Saturday, we'll backpack to Goat Camp via Vicente Flat and the Stone Ridge Trail. Then we'll climb our peak on Sunday morning, and hike out via the rest of the Stone Ridge Trail and then back to LImekiln. This should be an excellent time to see lots of wildflowers.

Contact Judy Molland: judy@judymolland.com for more information.

 

 

 

 

 

Backcountry Ski Bridgeport

Goal:  TBD

Location: Bridgeport, Eastside of the Sierras

Dates: April 14, 15

Leader: Louise Wholey

 

Come join us for our sixth of the Backcountry Skiing Series, this one in the wonderful Bridgeport area. Expect multiple one-day outings, such as Crater Crest. Requires advanced skiing skills (resort black diamond), avalanche training. Randonee or Telemark skis, climbing skis, avalanche beacon,
shovel, and probe.

Leader: Louise Wholey (louisewholey at yahoo.com)

To sign up send $8 for leader training to Louise Wholey, 21020 Canyon
View Drive, Saratoga, CA 95070.

 

Backcountry Ski Sierra

Goal:  Mt. Tom, Elderberry Canyon

Location: Mt. Tom, Eastside of the Sierras

Dates: May 12, 13

Leader: Louise Wholey

 

Come join us for our grand finale of the Backcountry Skiing Series, skiing a classic route in the high Sierra. Requires advanced skiing skills (resort black diamond+), avalanche training. Randonee or Telemark skis, climbing skis, avalanche beacon,
shovel, and probe.

Leader: Louise Wholey (louisewholey at yahoo.com)

To sign up send $8 for leader training to Louise Wholey, 21020 Canyon
View Drive, Saratoga, CA 95070.

 

Private Trip Calendar

Important: Private trips are not insured, sponsored, or supervised by the Sierra Club. They are listed here because they may be of interest to PCS members. Private trips may be submitted directly to the Scree editor.

October, 2012 - Nepal

Leader: Warren Storkman

 

 

 

 

 

January, 2013 - Argentina

Leader: Warren Storkman

 

Private Trip Details

 

Nepal

Goal: Rara Lake

Dates: October, 2012

Leader: Warren Storkman

 

If you are interested in Nepal, October 2012, and going to Rara Lake in the remote Mugu District, contact Warren Storkman: dstorkman@aol.com.

No obligation, but I need your email address.

 

Argentina

Goal: Aconcagua (22,841')

Location: Argentina

Dates: January 2013

Leader: Warren Storkman

 

If you are interested in visiting Argentina and climbing Aconcagua, one of the seven summits, contact Warren Storkman: dstorkman@aol.com.

No obligation, but I need your email address.

 

Trip Reports

 

Mount Warren (12,327')

October 22

By Dana Chaney

 

Mt. Warren is a pile of rocks towering 12,327 feet high about 3 Ĺ miles from the 9,000' marker on Tioga Road outside of Yosemite Park as you careen down the steep Lee Vining Canyon stretch of road.  I camped overnight in some walk-in campsites a couple of hundred yards up the trail and unmarked on the road. 

 

 

 

 

 

There was no one else there and I didnít see anybody on the trail either.  It was growing late in the year in the mountains and it froze overnight but it warmed up during the day and I ended up, as often seems to happen in California, in shirt sleeves on the top of the mountain.

 

 

 

The trail goes up Warren Canyon for a while following the main creek and then cuts up a smaller creek coming down steeply on the right side.  That creek drains a big meadow and catty-corner across the meadow there is a much longer creek drainage leading up to the plateau over which the final peak towers.  This second long creek drainage is the crux of this climb consisting of 1,600 vertical feet of climbing over busted rocks sometimes shifting so watch those ankles.

 

The main attraction of the mountain appears to be the excellent view of Mono Lake.  The mountain is closer to the lake than Mt. Dana which is visible to the southwest and which is higher at 13,057 feet.  Alan and I climbed Mt. Dana on the Fourth of July, 2003, so I have seen the view from both mountains, and the view, at least of the lake, is better on Warren.

 

Warren-#1.jpg

The creek leading from Warren Canyon to the meadow

 

Warren-#2.jpg

The meadow. The route is up to the notch on the horizon right of center

 

 

 

Warren-#3.jpg

First view of the peak climbing up from the meadow, 1,600 feet of this busted rock. Ugh!

 

Warren-#4.jpg

I climbed the ridge on the snow, much nicer than busted rocks

 

Warren-#5.jpg

Pretty much the point of the whole climb: Mono Lake, 4 Ĺ miles to near edge. The lake itself is 12 miles across

 

Rambling Through The Marble Mountains

October 27 - 30

By Kelly Maas

 

With the warm weather climbing season quickly winding down, I had a sudden urge in October to get out one more time.  I chose the Marble Mountains – a place Iíd been intending to visit for a very long time.  Itís always seemed that the shoulder season, particularly the fall, would be the right time to go.  Thatís because the elevation is low enough to be hot in the summer, and the winter snow may still cover the trails in the spring.

 

First, I should answer the foremost question about the Marbles – ďwhere are they?Ē  They are west of Mt Shasta and north of the Trinity Alps.  Drive up I-5 and go west from Yreka.  Yes, itís a long drive.

 

Though itís possible to bag one mountain or another as a two-day trip, I chose to make it three days – the last weekend of October – to allow us to climb both the highest peak (Boulder Peak) and the namesake Marble Mtn.  These peaks are several miles apart, which necessitated some planning in order to achieve both objectives in the allocated time.  This ended up being achieved via a short car shuttle and only a few miles of cross-country travel.

 

 

 

 

As I said, itís a long drive from the Bay Area.  Even with an early start, Tim Hult and I arrived at the Loverís Camp trailhead shortly after 11pm Thursday.  The other car arrived a few minutes later.  It contained Dallas Vaughn, Stephane Mouradian, Chris Prendergast, Sassan Hazeghi, and Dallasís dog Lupine.  As far as we know, there were no other cars at this trailhead the whole weekend, even though itís the most popular trailhead for the wilderness.  We saw no other hikers the whole weekend, though there were two groups of horsemen.  In contrast, a friend told me of

 

 

being there in the summer, when the popular lakes were very crowded.

 

Before setting off Friday morning, we shuttled a car to the Boulder Creek trailhead.  The eight mile shuttle takes 45 minutes total.  The trail, beautifully covered by colorful autumn leaves (including huge maples) climbs gradually up Canyon Creek.  It seemed like no time before we reached the cabin and a view up at the east side of the striking Marble Rim.  Itís labeled as Marble Mountain on the map, but itís really a ridge.  Anyway, itís exposed white marble – something Iíd never seen before.  At the north end of this ridge sits Black Marble Mountain – the high point.  There is less white marble there, and more conventional dark rock.

Sassan-and-Dog.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

We ate lunch, then headed up the trail that crosses the Marble Rim.  From the saddle, we traversed north on the amazing marble to Black Marble Mtn. at 7442 ft.  Lupine (the dog) quickly proved herself on this first bit of cross country.  It didnít faze her a bit.  In fact, sheís close to the ultimate backcountry dog.  Besides being big, with long powerful legs, she also has a great temperament, not barking even once in three days.  Though it was hazy, the views were still fine, and the temperature pleasantly cool.  We could just see Shasta hiding behind a higher ridge to the east.  The map showed us that that ridge must be Boulder Peak.

 

From Black Marble Mtn, Iíd wanted to traverse back to the saddle, and then continue on south along the ridge, which contained another mile of marble.  But the late hour and the difficulty of the ridge immediately south of the saddle nixed that idea.  We took the shortest way off the mountain and back to the trail and then to our packs at the cabin.  From there, we raced the setting sun to Lower Sky High Lake.  The sun won and we got our headlights out as soon as we reached the lake.  Sky High Valley is said to be swarming with people and horses in the summer, but this time there wasnít another sole around.  The weather forecast had previously been questionable for Friday night, but it had since improved.  We had great weather all weekend, and it never dropped below freezing.

marble-mountain.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

Saturday morning was pretty lazy, as some of us wandered off after breakfast to photograph the aspen.  It didnít help that we were still on daylight saving time (sunrise at 7:40am), and that the sun had to surmount a high ridge before it could shine on our camp.  But eventually we got going, joining up with the PCT, and following it south for about six miles.  We left the PCT just above Summit Lake and dropped into the Shackleford Creek drainage.  After following the trail downstream for a few quick miles, we turned NE and followed the signs to Calf Lake, our destination for the night.  The maps show Calf Lake at the end of a spur trail that branches off the main trail that continues NE to Back Meadows and Big Meadows.  But we never saw a junction. 

Apparently the trail to Back Meadows and Big Meadows has been abandoned, and the only destination is Calf Lake. 

Gorgeous-View.jpg

 

We appreciated the view of Mt. Shasta from Calf Lake, and that we were done with the 1600 ft ascent from Shackleford Creek.  An evening fire was built in the existing fire pit, and we enjoyed another restful night in the great outdoors.  We felt that we had the wilderness to ourselves.

 

On Sunday, we had to traverse Boulder Peak, then hike out, shuttle cars, and drive home.  Consequently we got a much earlier start, though still not an alpine start.  We would be off-trail until the far side of Boulder Peak.  We quickly reached Long High Lake, and then scrambled up the north side of the cirque and onto the ridge, just east of point 8070. 

 

 

The ridge-top had some difficult rock that we had to bypass, but after a bit we were heading north on the (easier) main ridge to Boulder Peak, enjoying the views of Shasta along the way.  We were fooled many times by false summits, but eventually a point was reached that was unequivocally the summit.  Class 2 and 8299 ft.  The high point of the Marbles.  We could see the white rock of the Marble Rim, miles away, but there was none on Boulder Peak.

reflections.jpg

We enjoyed a nice lunch on the top, but Stephane informed us that heíd taken a tumble and hurt his knee as we approached the peak.  He had concerns about the hike down.  We dropped SE to pick up a nearby trail not shown on the old USGS map.  Along here we saw the reputed foxtail pines.  (Very interesting because foxtails in the Sierra are all south of the San Joaquin River.)  This trail took us NE along the ridge to another trail that  we followed down past Upper Wright Lake and then Lower Wright Lake.  Downstream from Lower Wright Lake, we realized that weíd lost the trail.  Looking around for the trail didnít seem to help.  Some head scratching and consulting of altimeter and GPS led us to an enhanced understanding of our location, and eventually we backtracked a bit, crossed the creek, and picked up the trail again.  Somehow weíd missed where the trail crosses the creek.

The-Descent.jpg

 

Stephaneís knee was still hurting, but he toughed it out and kept up with the rest of us.  As we hiked the last miles to our car at the

 

 

 Boulder Creek trailhead, I was amazed to see that the straight line distance to the car – given by the GPS – was but a small fraction of the trail distance.  But given that we had thousands of feet to lose in a very short distance, I suppose this was inevitable.  Anyway, itís a steep and often dusty trail, and we were very thankful that we were descending rather than ascending it.  We got to the car around 3pm, then 45 minutes to shuttle the cars, and we hit the road home around 4pm.  Beautiful views from Hwy 5 of Shasta in the late afternoon light.  A nice dinner at Lillyís in the town of Shasta, then the long drive home.  It was a very enjoyable trip to a new place with a well-matched group of friends.  What more could I ask for?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elected Officials

Chair

    Emilie Cortes / mountaineerchica@gmail.com

    415-260-3618

Vice Chair and Trip Scheduler

    Louise Wholey / louisewholey@gmail.com

    21020 Canyon View Road, Saratoga, CA       95070

    408-867-6655

Treasurer and Membership Roster (address changes)

  Sonja Dieterich/ honukaimi@gmail.com

Publicity Committee Positions

Scree Editor

    Judy Molland / screeeditor@gmail.com

PCS World Wide Web Publisher
    Joe Baker/ pcs@joebaker.us

    1975 Cordilleras Rd, Redwood City, CA         94062

    650-261-1488

Scree is the monthly newsletter of the Peak Climbing Section of the Sierra Club Loma Prieta Chapter.  Current and back issues are posted on the web in PDF and HTML.

Our official website is http://www.peakclimbing.org.  Joining the PCS is easy.  Go to   http://www.peakclimbing.org/join

 

 

 

 

PCS Announcement Listserv

If you join the PCS Announcement Listserv you will receive announcements and updates of trips and meetings. Use the http://lists.sierraclub.org/SCRIPTS/WA.EXE?A0=LOMAP-PCS-ANNOUNCE&X=&Y= web page.

Climbing Classifications

The following trip classifications are to assist you in choosing trips for which you are qualified. No simple rating system can anticipate all possible conditions.
    Class 1: Walking on a trail.
    Class 2: Climbing using hands for balance.
    Class 3: Climbing requires the use of hands, maybe a rope.
    Class 4: Requires rope belays.
    Class 5: Technical rock climbing.

Trips may also be rated by level of exertion: easy, moderate, strenuous, or extreme.


Deadline for submissions to the next Scree is Tuesday , December 27. Meetings are held on the second Tuesday of each month.