Sunday, March 1, 2009


Tim from Colorado had posted on looking for a partner to climb Galena.  We were going to climb it today (Sunday), but he has been ill for the last week and couldn't shake it.  So I decided to use the weather window on Saturday and go up.  Chris and I drove up Friday night and slept in the Galena lodge parking lot.  I decided to take the same route that splattski took last year.  Due to the snow that the area had received, I was not looking forward to the skin up the SW ridge.  As was expected, it was miserable!  The snow was 2 feet deep all the way to point 9824.

SW Ridge

The wind had scoured all the new snow off the mountain after this point.  The rock section had mini-cornices that needed to be negotiated.  We probably should've turned around and skied the sweet powder in the trees on the lower portion of the ridge, but we trudged on.  We made it to the convergence of the West and South West ridges and started towards the summit.  We started across a small windslab on a low angle, it settled.  There was a much larger windslab further up on steeper terrain.  I called it.  It sucked to stop 200 feet shy, but it wasn't worth the risk.  

West/SW Ridge Convergence

We booted down the West ridge since there wasn't enough snow to ski.  At around 10,000 feet I was able to finally put my skis on.  I stayed right on the ridge due to the instabilities of the snowpack.  Chris was on tele gear and booted further down to where the ridge widens.

SW Ridge Rock Section

I dropped down off the ridge through the trees and skied right up to the deposition zone of a recent avalanche.  I could see that it had come off of the NW aspect.  I turned my beacon over to "search", but luckily... nothing.

Deposition Zone

After a 9 hour up-and-over, we were at the truck, changed, and driving down to cheeseburger bliss in Hailey.  


Dean Lords said...

Looks like you guys had fun! Will we ever get more snow??

Ralph S. said...

It was fun! Hopefully we get a few more dumpings to give us good spring skiing.

I feel bad... I've already broke out Bingham's book and started planning our attack on the City this spring!