Dryer "Glacier" (Mt Hood)

Discussions and Trip Reports for off-trail adventures and rediscovering lost trails
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Re: Dryer "Glacier" (Mt Hood)

Post by mjirving » August 4th, 2017, 8:02 pm

Very cool to see the info on Pittock and Dryer Glaciers, those are perfectly named IMHO. Little did I know (their names), but I was up on both of them a couple weeks ago.

Tom, as a former ski racer who trained on the Palmer Glacier at summer ski camp in high school I must correct your salting assumption as the opposite effect is the desire. The application of salt melts just the top layer in the morning when it's applied when it's still cold, then as it melts and the salt is dissipated, it re-freezes into a much harder, icier surface. When you ski on it, it's like a sheet of corrugated ice. This is important for not only keeping the skiing viable as the day warms, but even more so for ski racing where you have repeated skiers hammering with force into each turn around the gates on the course.

I'm not going to defend its use, but I would be interested to see something that scientifically/statistically proves that it has a bad effect. I'm not saying it doesn't, but I'm not ready to say it does either.

I know for a fact that they still use it as I was up there last weekend hiking up and over Mississippi Head and they had salt stacked at the top of the ski runs. At the end of my hike back at the lodge they were hauling pallets of salt around with a big ole John Deere front loader with forks. And lastly I know this as my best friend sells them their salt! :-)

As an avid skier, I ski Heather and Clark Canyons in the winter off the side of Mt Hood Meadows and it's some of the most magical in-bounds terrain around.

Great info...I'm committing those glaciers to memory for sure!


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Chip Down
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Re: Dryer "Glacier" (Mt Hood)

Post by Chip Down » May 11th, 2019, 7:49 pm

Our little May heat wave drove me up to an alpine trip a little earlier than usual. I suppose that's a good thing. I went back to ascend the west lobe of Dryer Glacier, knowing it would be continuous snow this time. But what really took me back was my desire to see the upper White River canyon in spring conditions (having been there many times in winter and summer). I was expecting braided creeks, maybe some flowers. Nope, pretty much solid snow, maybe about 80% I'm guessing. The only real challenge of the day was getting to the top of a prow that has been compared to a mini Mississippi Head. It was the only part of the day where I really needed axe and crampons. Strangely, my pics of it are missing. C'est la vie.

Lots of people up there today, more than I've ever seen. Several headed up to Steel Cliff, perhaps for an ascent of the Wy'East route. Also saw some headed over to Newton-Clark glacier. Nobody in the canyon though. Nobody goes there, except in the winter from the snow park. It's a fun place, and I always have it all to myself.
After getting up to the ridge crest on the left, followed it up the mountain.
On the s-shaped crest, with a nice little snow shelf just below crest.
Looking back at the high point on the ridge. It was fun watching sunlight creeping across the canyon, hitting all the high points and then spreading.
Booooring! Just a long slog. About 2/3 of the way up the scenery improved.
Scrambling up that was fun; coming down, not so much.
Is it possible a rogue Meadows employee took a groomer up the ridge next to Super Bowl?
The snow around the top of Cascade Express gets really steep, every year.
I assume the steel box used to rest on the wooden structure before it collapsed. Wonder what it was for. I've often appreciated the shade it provides.
Looks newish, and I don't think I've seen it before. Nice building. Probably big enough to make a cozy home, but then I'd have to rent storage space.

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Re: Dryer "Glacier" (Mt Hood)

Post by mjirving » May 12th, 2019, 4:46 am

That upper ski patrol building has been there for several years...maybe ten?? But yes, relatively new. I might have been in one of your pictures as I went from Government Camp to the base of the Pearly Gates yesterday and then skied down almost all the way back to Govy in an hour long ski run. Had to hike the last mile on dirt. It was a gorgeous day yesterday for both of us!

(Wished I had crampons to get through the Gates, but just had my micros)

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