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JF's Tahoe corn harvest.

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Some of this will be a repeat, as I have been posting daily in the "Backcountry stoke" thread.  I was beginning to think I was hijacking, so I thought I would consolidate it into one place.  Hope someone enjoys it as much as I have.

I reluctantly left the powder in Utah for the sunny sierras on Thursday 4-29.  After a stop over in beautiful Battle Mountain, NV. I arrived in South Lake Tahoe on Friday afternoon.  My excuse is to see my Mom on Mothers Day & my nieces graduation on the 15th.  In the meantime I am trying to get some Alpine Touring in.  So far my timing has been pretty good, & I've gotten some great skiing & spectacular views.  Everywhere I have been are places that I have skied before, but haven't been out here much for the past 10 years.  One thing that has changed is that there are a lot more skiers/riders visiting the backcountry.

Today 5-6-10 on Mt. Tallac:


5-1-10 Saturday:
767x274px-LL-f4c89918_Steven Peak 014.JPG
I arrived in Lake Tahoe last night, & conditions seemed right for a little trek this morning.

Lake Tahoe in the background, looking north from ridge on Stevens Peak:
9b5635f5_Steven Peak 016.JPG

Some wind blown crust up high, but consistent snow mid mountain.  Not quite corn yet but close on the lower angles:
b6776ed4_Steven Peak 031.JPG





A northern aspect toward the bottom was almost powder:


Looking back at the peak on the way back to town:


5-2-10 Sunday:

Back for more today.  Same location, but went up a different ridge where the wind was 50mph.  This pinnacle was my protection.  Once I was off the ridge the wind was nil & the corn was sweeter than yesterday.


Red Lake peak, which was my original plan today, but it looked like a lot of tracks already & didn't look like the snow had transitioned yet.


Natures halfpipe.


The pinnacle, looking from the top of my second run.


SE aspects where revealing perfect corn from 9000' to 7000'.


Exit shot.


5-3-10 Monday:
Today was Jake's Peak above the west shore of Lake Tahoe, & Emerald Bay.


North Bowl of Mt. Tallac:


South shore of Lake Tahoe, Freel Peak & Monument Peak in the background:


My feet & the mouth of Emerald Bay:


Freel Peak, at just under 11000' the tallest in the area:


Corn Tracks, E-SE aspect.  Done by 9:30 & would've been too soft by 10.  The past two days I was able to have good skiing till 12:30, but I was a1000' higher.  The less sun exposed aspects have yet to corn up.




5-4-10 Tuesday:
Today my decision was Mt. Ralston.  Mt. Ralston borders the Desolation Valley Wilderness area.  I approached from Highway 50, directly across the road from the turn off to Sierra-at-Tahoe resort.  The temps didn't quite cooperate like they did on Sunday, as it was barely a re-freeze & I almost abandoned after the first hour.  My Ipod started playing some song about not giving up, so I kept going, & the snow got better as I got higher.

56370ad1_Ralston & Sierra 5-4-10 005.JPG

Had to boot up the final pitches like yesterday, it was pretty steep:
838c77ec_Ralston & Sierra 5-4-10 016.JPG

Sierra-at-Tahoe as seen from my perch:
5d6918c9_Ralston & Sierra 5-4-10 007.JPG

There are Golden Trout down in that little lake:
a5561824_Ralston & Sierra 5-4-10 019.JPG

9b168ea6_Ralston & Sierra 5-4-10 028.JPG

Another gratuitous self portrait:
addfb007_Ralston & Sierra 5-4-10 037.JPG

My route down is marked with the red line (I just discovered this cool feature):
d7bd3bb2_Ralston & Sierra 5-4-10 038.JPG
The bottom section was totally rotten snow, but I was lucky to find it.  Had I gone down the way I went up, it would have been alot of bushwhacking, skis on & off, & creek crossings.  As it turned out I was able to ski all the way to the car, always a bonus!

5-5-10 Wednesday:
Today was a bit of a bust with gail force winds & not very cold temps overnight.  I started out from the south end of Fallen leaf like with this slope in mind:
Glen Alpine 5-5 006.JPG

I have skied it before, by following the stream up the valley & crossing on a footbridge for the ascent.  Either the bridge is gone, or I couldn't find it.  "WHERE'S THAT CONFOUNDED BRIDGE?"

After 2 hours of climbing I got to spend an hour retracing my route by skiing downhill with my skins on which was kinda fun.
Anyway here are a few scenic shots:
Glen Alpine 5-5 001.JPG

Glen Alpine 5-5 008.JPG

Glen Alpine 5-5 011.JPG

Glen Alpine 5-5 013.JPG

Glen Alpine 5-5 003.JPG

5-6-10 Thursday:
Mt. Tallac sits just above the SW corner of Lake Tahoe.  I started skiing up there 35 yrs. ago when I was a teen.  Not many folks went up there back then, as it is a long grueling 3400' staircase to the summit.  I have skied almost every imaginable line up there from mellow wide open slopes to narrow steep chutes, great mountain!

Over the years it has kinda become the Tuckerman's of the Sierras.  There are always people up there.  I rode my bike out Saturday & again on Sunday just to take a look.  There were no less than 25 cars parked at the access, & this was at 2 or 3 in the afternoon...  NUTS!  Anyway, I thought I would wait till midweek & get an early start for my best chances of finding a smooth run & the optimum snow.  When we were kids, it was a given that you got yourself onto the summit between 9:30 & 10 AM, & never without a solid freeze the night before (This is springtime I'm talking about).  I know I'm getting old, but it seems like some people just don't have a clue nowadays.  Okay, done with my rant!

It turned out to be the perfect day, & my best skiing so far.  I met up with Stewart toward the top & did a 1/2 a lap with him before booting back up (no skinning today).  He shot the video for me.

Here are the pics:
Ralston & Sierra 5-4-10 001.JPG

Tallac 5-6 003.JPG
Tallac 5-6 004.JPG

Jakes Peak, which I skied the other day:
Tallac 5-6 013.JPG

Stewart making the boot pack:
Tallac 5-6 026.JPG

Mount Rose across the lake:
Tallac 5-6 027.JPG

Some of the ridges of Desolation Wilderness, beyond Tallac:
Tallac 5-6 028.JPG

Parting shot:
vlcsnap-2010-05-06-16h03m20s45.png

We will see what tomorrow brings.

Thanks,
JF
post #2 of 16
geez, that's pretty much a south lake guidebook...

you might need to knock off round top next

I wish I'd looked at the backcountry stoke thread, I'da tried to join you on at least one of those

tallac is crowded these days, 'course I'd like to hit up cathedral bowl via boat approach on fallen leaf

tallacrock2mark.jpg

jakes is awfully good, it looks like you skied the east avy path?

south facing is awfully good corn skiing, I'd imagine I'll ride it this weekend, I might just spend a day at squaw tomorrow...

angora, halls of the gods area (back end of fallen leaf), you gotta cross the water early.  Trying to go around the lake to the right will give you the tour you found.  I found that out the hard way too.
post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
you might need to knock off round top next
It is on the list, but I did it 2 yrs ago so it is a little lower on the list plus I think it will still be good later if I get the chance.

Quote:

tallac is crowded these days, 'course I'd like to hit up cathedral bowl via boat approach on fallen leaf
That was one of my options today minus the boat.  There is not much snow down by Stanford camp so there would be some bushwhacking on that route,  I have done it from Stanford camp & the usual spring creek & behind the summit, then boot back to the north & hit the bowls below the cross & from there back to the car,  I was afraid it may have old tracks, as people seem to be riding stuff awfully late in the day & leaving deep ruts as well as rollerballs & pinwheels.  Instead we skied on SE faces to the north early, then booted back up & went further north out the ridge & a super long run back to spring creek by noon.  It was stellar!  I may do the same tomorrow.

Quote:

jakes is awfully good, it looks like you skied the east avy path?
Yeah, main path to 89, the top was a mess so I stayed in the trees to the north for awhile.

Quote:

south facing is awfully good corn skiing, I'd imagine I'll ride it this weekend, I might just spend a day at squaw tomorrow...
A few days ago it was the only aspect with corn S & SE.  Everything is beginning to get springlike now.

Quote:

angora, halls of the gods area (back end of fallen leaf), you gotta cross the water early.  Trying to go around the lake to the right will give you the tour you found.  I found that out the hard way too.
 I did it 10 yrs ago & there was a footbridge at one of the cabins.  The next day we went from Twin Bridges to Pyramid to Fallen leaf finishing on the bridge.  That was a tour!  I think it is gone now.  If I go back I will just stay on the west & south side of the lake.

I will be gone this weekend, although may do Round Top on my way out.  Should be back by Tues or Wed next week.  PM me if you are free,

JF
post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 

5-7-10 Friday:

I returned to Tallac today cause it was so good yesterday.  I have to say, my legs are getting tired!  It was a little warmer this morning & the snow was softening a bit earlier.  I began hiking at 7:15 & was skiing by 10am.  I skied pretty much the same route as the second run yesterday, An ESE aspect which has been the best corn snow all week as long as you time it right.  I only did one run today as it would've been too wet for anymore, but it was a good one.

 

The view once I topped out on the first ridge:

Day 2 Tallac 5-7-10 004.JPG

 

Big Blue in the background:

Day 2 Tallac 5-7-10 010.JPG

 

Pyramid Peak to the West:

Day 2 Tallac 5-7-10 013.JPG

 

Top of my main run:

Day 2 Tallac 5-7-10 026.JPG

 

Tracks coming through the nicely spaced trees:

Day 2 Tallac 5-7-10 032.JPG

 

Final pitch:

Day 2 Tallac 5-7-10 033.JPG

 

Thanks,

JF

 

post #5 of 16

Thanks for showing us how springtime in Tahoe is done.

post #6 of 16

That looks like a pretty legit good time. Thanks for putting up the pics.  I did all my early bc skiing in California and your photos are great to see.

 

post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cirquerider View Post

Thanks for showing us how springtime in Tahoe is done.

So many choices this time of year.  I've actually been out on the bike some in the afternoons.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Lee View Post

That looks like a pretty legit good time. Thanks for putting up the pics.  I did all my early bc skiing in California and your photos are great to see.

 

Corn season is lasting about a month longer than normal.  The snowpack is at mid April depths, & extends almost to lake level.
 

post #8 of 16

Looks sweet. And comes with a built in workout...

post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 

5-8-10 Sat. :

 

Third morning on Mt. Tallac.  I took a different route today, which brought me right to the base of the Cross.  The Cross is the dominant feature that fills in with snow first & is the last to melt in the summer.  It looks like a big "t" below the peak.  It is also a cool chute to ski.

4-4-09:

7-4 004 cross.jpg

 

My first glimpse of the mountain as I exit the woods on approach.

3rd day on Tallac 5-8-10 001.JPG

 

I have been encountering bear tracks & have heard them all week.  Yesterday I was a little too close to one for comfort:

3rd day on Tallac 5-8-10 011.JPG

 

Standing in the debris pile at the exit of The Cross:

3rd day on Tallac 5-8-10 017.JPG

 

On the way down:

3rd day on Tallac 5-8-10 026.JPG

 

Tracks on the final pitch.  Prime corn at about 9:30am

3rd day on Tallac 5-8-10 030.JPG

 

3rd day on Tallac 5-8-10 032.JPG

 

Off to see the folks for Mother's Day.  Maybe more next week.

JF

post #10 of 16

It's sort of unusual for Tallac to still be in such good shape this time of year.  Good on ya for being there.  

 

One of my oldest friends lives in SLT and had his garage door torn up by a bear a year or two ago.  Them Tahoe bears is getting a bit habituated.  

post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bob Lee View Post

It's sort of unusual for Tallac to still be in such good shape this time of year.  Good on ya for being there.  

 

One of my oldest friends lives in SLT and had his garage door torn up by a bear a year or two ago.  Them Tahoe bears is getting a bit habituated.  


Had a Bear break into the cabin last summer.  What a mess.

Bear beffet 006.JPG

JF

post #12 of 16

Beautiful planet we live on isn't it. thanks for the stoke. Much appreciated.

post #13 of 16

4ster - THANKS! for sharing every fabulous photo.  Each one makes me smile.  Just gorgeous.

Loved seeing the "perch view" from Ralston of SAT. helps put areas of the mountain into a different perspective.  I'd say I was envious, but, your photos are really more inspirational as well as motivating.

 

A tad off topic, but figuring you may know.  Saw a promo film on you tube of Edelweiser ski resort from the 50's. I've been trying to pinpoint where exactly it was.  That location is just eluding me. It's right there,somewhere, just around a corner, but where?

post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

Beautiful planet we live on isn't it. thanks for the stoke. Much appreciated.

Yes it is!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 911over View Post

A tad off topic, but figuring you may know.  Saw a promo film on you tube of Edelweiser ski resort from the 50's. I've been trying to pinpoint where exactly it was.  That location is just eluding me. It's right there,somewhere, just around a corner, but where?

911over,

 

I drove right by it yesterday on my way back to Tahoe I took a quick peek & I am pretty sure this is the spot.  Hmmm, maybe I should go ski it.

 

"It was right there where Camp Sacramento is now.  After the last sharp turn coming up from Twin Bridges, the main ski run is on your right.  I never skied there, but I vaguely remember my dad talking about it on the way to SLT.  The run was pretty obvious for most of my life, but is probably getting grown in by now."


http://www.epicski.com/forum/thread/94085/1940-s-equipment-with-modern-technique-ma#post_1218725

 

JF

post #15 of 16
Thread Starter 

My brother came up for a visit last night, so I took him for a morning jaunt back up to Mt. Tallac this morning.

 

Thanks,

JF


Edited by 4ster - 5/14/10 at 2:59pm
post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 

Here are the pic's that wouldn't show on the last post.

 

The Mountain:

Tallac 005.JPG

 

Morning exercise:

Tallac 013.JPG

 

Evolving cumulus:

Tallac 022.JPG

 

Tracks:

Tallac 025.JPG

 

Reaping the reward:

Tallac 028.JPG

 

JF Tallac 2.jpg

JF

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