I had a couple friends going in the day before to do an overnighter and maybe hit another line then hit the south face of Split Sunday. I decided to camp at the trailhead (6800 feet) and leave really early and hopefully catch up to them. It was risky going for corn up so high, but I was feeling lucky.
I started hiking @ 4:30am. About 1/2 hour into following a game trail I came to a steep brushy section guarded by a bunch of rotten cliffs (you can skin on the other side but it's steep and frozen so it would kinda suck). It was pitch black and I couldn't find a way through so I climbed down through the cliffs and into the thick brush. As I was stepping down off the last ledge I pulled off a 100lb rock, lost my balance, and went tumbling backwards downhill into brush and rosebushes. I tried pushing the rock away but it came down the hill with me and landed flush on my leg pinning my foot sideways completely covering it past the knee. So there I am in sticker bushes, head downhill and in turtle postition w/ a giant rock on me. I panicked for a second and realized I felt no pain. I got out of my straps and managed to leverage the rock enough to free my leg. Ok! That woke me right up! No harm done except some skin loss on my thumb.
Here's pic of south face I took a couple years ago:
Random pic I found on summitpost from Cardinal:
When I arrive at south face I see my buddies starting up. Mike quickly got sick and had to bail. He wasn't doing well with the altitude coming from L.A.
There were a couple annoying cloud bands that didn't seem to want to leave and I was having second thoughts on whether this would soften, but about 10am it completely cleared and things got soft quick.
Cardinal chutes and my backup plan I didn't need to resort to:
Looking down at Dave and Mike's camp:
Dave likes to dig seats with a view on most his ascents:
When I got to the top I scrambled to the lookers right peak not realizing the lookers left was the actual southern summit. The actual summit is on the north side of the east couloir so not like it matters anyway.
Southern summit looking northwest:
The real summit looking north (14058). Birch mountain in background has a sick looking 2k foot corn shot I didn't know about. Intriguing:
Looking down the east couloir :eek:
I ran into a buddy of mine and his friend coming out. They had tried climbing it the day before and said it was mostly ice still. They climbed another couloir with skis on the east side then skied the shoulder down Sunday. Basically ice climbing w/ some skiing. They're real climbers.
Top of east couloir:
Sort of immature corn on the face but it was soft and that's all that mattered.
I hung out at their camp to refuel then rode to my car in one shot (11 hrs car to car). About 4800ft of corn. Some of the goods on way back:
Dave said he took some good photos but it might be a week before I see em knowing him and he's posting his own TR elsewhere.
POV! (a bit overexposed in spots but I corrected what I could):