Friday, May 19, 2017

Hello Disappointment Cleaver!

Greetings from a sunny Camp Muir!

After a winter storm last week, we are seeing warming temperatures and clearer skies on the mountain today. Heavy snowfall--in excess of two feet--kept teams from summitting for most of the last week. Parties have reported knee-deep trailbreaking above Ingraham Flats today, but that the route remains well-wanded and in decent early season conditions. There is still a tremendous amount of snow on the ground, with no exposed rocks on the route at this time.

From Ingraham Flats, the route ascends the Ingraham Glacier Direct directly before traversing right to the top of Disappointment Cleaver around 12,200'. There is one ladder in this section and some fixed pickets. Evaluate this equipment before using it for your climbing team.

Above the Cleaver, the route does a rising traverse towards the Emmons Shoulder and then traverses back west around 13,000'. There is some overhead serac hazard in this section and it is not an ideal place to take breaks.

The last thousand feet to the crater rim is sporting numerous thinly bridges crevasses and multiple parties have reported poking into holes here. Just because the surface snow looks smooth does not mean that there isn't crevasse hazard. Keep appropriate rope spacing throughout this section.

With warming temperatures on the way, it is expected that the route will change rapidly. Be aware of changing conditions and leave high camp early to beat the heat and softening snow conditions.