Barrett Spur 10.9.13

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Rabid Swan
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Barrett Spur 10.9.13

Post by Rabid Swan » October 10th, 2013, 10:17 pm

Well so much for fall. It felt like full on winter on my way up to Barrett spur yesterday. I've accepted the end up my scree/talus season on hood and have transitioned back to slowshoes. :cry: There were small patches of snow at the TH and on the way up to the permit box the trees were raining icy water from the recent snowfall. Brrrrrrr

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It would have helped to put on my slowshoes for most of the hike up to the timberline trail, but I'm always reluctant to don the ankle weights. I waited until I reached the first open view of hood when I was sinking in a good 10 inches. Hood was hidden in the clouds until I started to question the forecast then he made a perfectly timed appearance for some extra motivation.

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Some thin clouds passed over making for a nice eerie ascent.

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I put the snowshoes away for the the final climb and found it to be a bit easier covered in snow and ice than sand and rock.

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The final traverse over to the high point was a little sketchy as the rocks under the snow were icy making random footholds break loose. I took my time here and made sure to kick solid steps onto rocks when possible.

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For me Yocum Ridge and Barrett Spur are tied for the most beautiful views of hood, but wherever you are you just can't beat the views of hood with it's first few ice coverings of the season. I spent an hour and a half on top to soak it all in and was fortunate to have little wind up there. It was still quite chilly so I put on all my layers, wrapped up in my down quilt and brewed some tea.

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Helens and Rainier were shining bright as a I made my way down.

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I ended up stopping on three separate occasions on my drive back to watch the lovely sunset.

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The snow has already claimed the high country, but I'm crossing my fingers for high freezing levels. C'mon mother nature. At least leave the roads clear!

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Splintercat
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Re: Barrett Spur 10.9.13

Post by Splintercat » October 11th, 2013, 1:33 pm

Amazing photos, Rabid - the clouds really add to the icy feeling! A bunch of these would look good on the front of the PH.org calendar..!! :)

But in the words of the ancients: "This [early snow] too shall pass." We'll be walking on bare ground up there in a week or so, and after that, well into November... we're not done with bare-boot hiking yet! At least, if past is prologue.

Thanks for posting!

Tom :D

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drm
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Re: Barrett Spur 10.9.13

Post by drm » October 11th, 2013, 1:49 pm

As to bare ground - the question is how far up (to what altitude) it will melt. I like the snow as much as most folks here, but I'm not ready for it yet.

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jamesthehiker
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Re: Barrett Spur 10.9.13

Post by jamesthehiker » October 11th, 2013, 5:23 pm

Great adventure; did you start at Vista Ridge TH or a different TH? Curious on the conditions for driving to Vista Ridge TH this weekend.

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Rabid Swan
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Re: Barrett Spur 10.9.13

Post by Rabid Swan » October 11th, 2013, 9:27 pm

Splintercat wrote: But in the words of the ancients: "This [early snow] too shall pass." We'll be walking on bare ground up there in a week or so, and after that, well into November... we're not done with bare-boot hiking yet! At least, if past is prologue.
drm wrote:As to bare ground - the question is how far up (to what altitude) it will melt. I like the snow as much as most folks here, but I'm not ready for it yet.
I sure hope you're right Tom. I don't doubt that below 6000ft we'll have the usual dusting/melting til November, but I'm not feeling very hopeful of the about the higher areas I was hoping to explore this time of year.
jamesthehiker wrote:Great adventure; did you start at Vista Ridge TH or a different TH? Curious on the conditions for driving to Vista Ridge TH this weekend.


I started at the Vista Ridge TH. No snow and the roads were in very good condition aside from a few washboard sections. Have fun up there!

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retired jerry
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Re: Barrett Spur 10.9.13

Post by retired jerry » October 11th, 2013, 9:49 pm

if there's a little snow left then you can see bear and other animal prints

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weathercrazy
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Re: Barrett Spur 10.9.13

Post by weathercrazy » October 12th, 2013, 7:40 am

I'm trying to find my favorite photo...they are all good!

I'm thinking # 2? #4? # 6? Okay, all of them!

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kepPNW
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Re: Barrett Spur 10.9.13

Post by kepPNW » October 12th, 2013, 7:57 am

Yeah, those are some of the better photos posted here this year. And I don't think I'm saying that just because I'm so jealous you got up there! That one's one I've been really wanting to do. Just beautiful. Maybe there's still time, with this High that's building all week... Great report!
Karl
Back on the trail, again...

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Rabid Swan
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Re: Barrett Spur 10.9.13

Post by Rabid Swan » October 12th, 2013, 9:43 am

Would your opinions of my photos change if I told you I took them with my phone and free stitching software? :) (Galaxy S3 and Microsoft ICE)

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kepPNW
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Re: Barrett Spur 10.9.13

Post by kepPNW » October 12th, 2013, 10:04 am

Rabid Swan wrote:Would your opinions of my photos change if I told you I took them with my phone and free stitching software? :) (Galaxy S3 and Microsoft ICE)
Nice! No, I know I got some winners on top of South Sister with my S3. I just don't pull it out too often, other than to send someone a "Wish you were here!" summit shot. :) Maybe I should.
Karl
Back on the trail, again...

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