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Thread: MWN Winter

  1. #1
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    Default MWN Winter

    How many base to summit winter routes does Mount Washington have?

    Routes that are normally completed in a day trip.

    Lion Head
    Tuckerman Ravine Direct
    Ammonuusuc
    Jewel
    Boott Spur

    Is Huntington Ravine a winter daytrip?
    Are any Huntington Ravine routes all snow or do they tend to always have some sort of mixed rock, ice and snow?
    Last edited by Bill O; 02-08-2008 at 07:24 PM.
    Bill
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    Default Huntington Ravine

    I'm going to disqualify my statements right from the start by saying I have never done any of these in winter, but... I would venture to say that Huntington is a winter day trip route to the summit, but only for experts. There are several climbing routes from the base of the ravine, all of which would require traverses across snow, ice and rock. The actual trail would be difficult if not impossible to follow as there are no cairns until the top of the ravine. The trail is marked with yellow blazes on rock which would be buried in snow and/or ice. There would be many steep scrambles that would be extremely dangerous to attempt without a belay. There is also considerable avalanche danger depending on the conditions as the recent death there demonstrates. Other routes such as The Pinnacle and Damnation, O'Dell's, Yale and Central Gullies would be strictly technical ice climbs, although most would consider them intermediate climbs. Once at the top of the ravine, there is still a hike of at least 1.1 miles and 6-700' elevation gain which is very taxing after the climb up Huntington. Again, I have never climbed MW in winter, let alone Huntington, although I will someday. My take though is that it is doable. I could do another paragraph about why I wouldn't go solo and what experience I think one would need to attempt this, but I won't.

    KDT

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    Huntington is mostly mixed/technical climbing. You could ascend via "The Escape Hatch" but even this route could pose some issues that would deem it "technical" in nature. Avalanche danger is possible on this route and unless you have sound route finding skills in avalanche terrain I would just go with Lions Head.

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by kaseri
    Huntington is mostly mixed/technical climbing. You could ascend via "The Escape Hatch" but even this route could pose some issues that would deem it "technical" in nature. Avalanche danger is possible on this route and unless you have sound route finding skills in avalanche terrain I would just go with Lions Head.
    I think we're on the same page.

    I'd consider non-technical crampons and a mountaineering axe. Maybe snow pickets, deadmen and a rope if a fall would be fatal or a team member was timid.

    I'd consider technical to be two ice tools, crampons, ice screws and a rope.

    What's the status on the Cog side routes? How far is the road plowed?
    Bill
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    Default

    As far as I know Base Road is plowed to the COG lot. This is from info that a climbing partner gave me. I haven't actually been on that side of the mountain during winter. I do plan to summit from that side this year though so I'll have some first hand experience soon.

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by kaseri
    As far as I know Base Road is plowed to the COG lot. This is from info that a climbing partner gave me. I haven't actually been on that side of the mountain during winter. I do plan to summit from that side this year though so I'll have some first hand experience soon.
    Please let me know. I'd love to know the official policy on this.
    Bill
    Next up: Vermont City Marathon: May, 2011
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    Default Ammo Trailhead Parking

    The Ammo Trailhead parking Area is closed:

    http://www.fs.fed.us/r9/forests/whit...ads_status.php

    However, The Cog is open all winter. There is parking at Marshfield Station for a small fee.

    http://www.thecog.com/winter_train/

    KDT

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    Default Nelson Crag as winter day trip??

    Wouldn't nelson Crag also be listed as a winter day trip?? At least with this trail if all hell breaks loose you have the auto road to escape on. About the West side of the rock pile. I have done the Ammo Jewell loop in the winter and it did prove a challange. As K.D. stated in another thread the stream crossings can prove to be very difficult either frozen or running. Hard to see where the trail goes on the other side. One point near tree line on one of the stream crossings almost turned around cause I could not find the trail.
    The slabs also proved to be a challange. Once at L.O.C. things didn't get any easier. Signs were all burried so it was mostly compass to the top. We couldn't see very far due to blowing snow so we just set a direct line and up we went. The winds were very strong coming up from this direction and by the time I reached the summit I was very tired. I feel the west side is much more difficult than Lions head to climb in the winter. Jewell is much easier going down. One down side with Jewell is you have to cross the ridge for around a mile and a half to get to it. The winds were brutal!! Once on the Jewell it was a quick trip down.

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    Default

    Great stuff, thanks everyone.

    Would you do Nelson Crag via the Auto Road or Old Jackson Road out of Pinkham? Seems like a long route either way.
    Bill
    Next up: Vermont City Marathon: May, 2011
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    Default Nelson Crag

    Nelson Crag is a long route no matter how you do it. Jackson Road is the usual method and it is quite tame. A couple of short steep pitches but nothing strenuous. I doubt very much that NC has been broken out, though. I could be wrong, but it's not a route of choice in winter. I love it in the summer because you literally have it to yourself when the other trails are packed. As Rex said, you also have the Auto Road to bail out on if necessary.

    KDT

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