East Slopes

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East Slopes

Submitted By: Dobish on October 05, 2013

Administrator: Dobish

Views: 1170 page views

Rating: N/A

Route Type:
  • Ski Touring
Descent Difficulty: Intermediate
Descent Rating:
Season:
  • Winter
  • Spring
Ascent Type
- Skin Track: Moderate
- Bootpack: Strenuous
- Mountaineering: Easy
Starting Elevation: 10400 ft.
Elevation Gain: 3400 ft.
High Point: 13852 ft.
Max Slope Angle: 45°

Approach

The approach is pretty straight forward, as you head up the road, you will pass Francie's Cabin on your right. You will continue on up through the willows, then cut right just before the headwall. you will head across the slope, which depending on the snow can mean a lot of sidehill action, or you can opt for the direct route up the headwall.  Peak 10 will be to your NE, and as you hit the saddle between Peak 10 and Crystal Peak, you will head west up the ridge.  It is often sheltered from the wind until you get to this point, and then you need to make sure you are avoiding the cornice wind-lip.

The elevation gain is a little more than 2400' from treeline.

Equipment Needs

Standard Avy Gear is required. Avoid the lakes, and the headwalls if possible.

Descent

As you drop off of the summit, you are on a large convex slope that is about 38°. This face is almost due East, so it tends to get sun pretty early. In the late spring, this slope can easily be corn by 9:30am at the top, so plan to be up there early.  There are very few hazards on the top section, as there are no rocks or trees that are really poking through.  

Depending on the size of the group, and your time frame, a lot of people will go back up and do multiple laps on the East Face from above the headwall, as this is where the most open terrain is.  Once you get to the headwall, you need to keep a vigilant eye for the convexities and the sliding snow.  These slopes measure at close to 45° and have been getting sun from the very first light.  The tend to slide regularly, but as the snow gets heavier, they could probably do some damage. There are a few descent options to pick, that all wrap around the lake and back to the main gully.

There used to be an old mining cabin, that you can still see the remanants of just above the upper lake. 

After the lakes, if you are done for the day, you should head to the right, so you can avoid the willows and connect back up with teh Crystal Lakes Road.  You can take the road all the way back down to the trailhead if there is snow.

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