Monday, November 28, 2011

Ice Conditions - Nov 2011

Early season ice climbing is under way. To help minimized your driving time and to better plan your most excellent ice adventure here are what people are reporting about ice conditions in the Yukon Southern Lakes/White Pass area:

Please note ice and snow conditions are predictably unpredictable what you find when you get to the site might be completely different from what's written here.  

White Mountain - North Face
Ice Condition: Good
Snow Load: High
Climbs higher on the north face (Funga Phobia, Allen's Pillar) are in, if a little thin. Take care if visiting some of the higher climbs as avalanche risk will have increased with all the recent snow. The unnamed climb mentioned here had not reached the ground by mid-November, though with the spate of cold temps it has likely formed up by now.

White Mountain - South Face
Ice Condition: Poor
Snow Load: Light
Marginal conditions exist on the south face of White Mountain.  Log Jammed has large patches of mud interspersed with thin patches of ice.  The little brother of Log Jammed on climber's right is not climbable.

Carcross - Pooley
Ice Condition: Unknown
Snow Load: High
Pooley Creek has frozen over down by the highway but no ice is visible up higher in the canyon.  There is, however, a lot of snow.

Carcoss- Solar Flare/Soleil
Ice Condition: Good
Snow Load: High
These climbs appear to be in good condition with lots of ice visible from the road.  The lake does not look safe to cross.

Skayway - Moore Creek Bridge to Customs
Ice Condition: Moderate
Snow Load: Light
Warmer temps and lots of water means decent ice towards Skagway.  Most climbs have formed up to some extent but there is still a lot of visible rock.  Spicy Meatballs and the Amphitheatre are climbable but you will have to work around some rock.  Pack your stubbies and maybe a couple of nuts.

Skayway - Customs to Skagway
Ice Condition: Moderate
Snow Load: Light
South of customs the ice climbs are a bit thin but definitely climbable.  The temps are very reasonable and the snow load is almost non-existent.  Some of the gullies that are normally choked with snow have visible ice in them.  Last, but not least, I would give Reid Falls a pass until after January.