I just went back and checked, those photos were taken in March of ’05. So I imagine there will be snow, but not as much as in the pictures. Either way, I think gear rental is going to have to be one of the first things we do that Friday.
I rode bikes with a guy yesterday that has summited a few times and says Casaval is great. Like Max, he said it was like climbing in a different part of the world. He also said that Helen Lake, a very popular stop on the Avalanche Gulch route, can be littered with trash and human waste. What a shame.
here’s a photograph I found that was shot in June of ’04. Avalanche Gulch is front and center. Casaval is just to the left of that.
The snow covered pictures look gnarly. I might need a better tent and bag!
I ran the Wild Miles relay this past weekend with some buds from work. 179 miles through Riverside and San Diego counties with 8 dudes in just over 25 hours. It was crazy good time. I’m signed up for a 50 miler in two weeks, and then I’ll start recovering for the hike.
Anyone have any good weather guesses for Shasta in June? I might lean towards renting some better gear (tent in particular) if it is going to be cold where we’ll camp.
Here are some pics of the Casaval Ridge route Max Whittaker suggested. Avalanche Gulch, the route we first talked about, is just to the right of the ridge line.
I like it, what do you guys think?
Planning for Shasta is fun. We joke and debate. We weigh this option against that and imagine what the outcome will be when we actually strap on boots and packs. But in reality, it’s frivolous. We’re really just planning a weekend social gathering. In the mean time , there really IS a war going on. And Max Whittaker has brought it to our doorsteps in living color, through vivid imagery and a gripping firsthand account at his blog www.maxwhittaker.blogspot.com
Here’s an excerpt;
“The situation did not look good. We were pinned down in a spot that we could not return fire from. The LT decided we needed to move, so we raced around another wall, and for a bit it seemed we were in the clear. Just as we were leapfrogging through some rocks, covered by second squad, we came under fire again. I tumbled in a mass of legs, arms, and weapons with a few guys. One, Patishnock, shoots a grenade off. Our cover seems unbelievably shitty, and for the first time I think there’s a really good chance I’m going to be shot.”
…I wanna be just like you. You’re such a freakin’ stud, Max. It’s a bummer you won’t be able to make the trip. I’ll give that route a look. You think it’ll be okay for a bunch of first timers?
For those of you that haven’t met Max Whittaker he’s a freelance photojournalist based here in Sac. He’s represented by World Picture Network, New York. He’s also an all around bad ass. I mean come on, would you mess with a dude with a mug like this?
…for inviting me to your blog Carl. I’m still in Afghanistan for one more day making the long trek back to Sac.
Good to see you guys are planning a Shasta climb. I used to guide up there, but despite the 50-plus summits and probably another 100 days of flailing around on it, it’s still my most favorite mountain in the world.
I doubt I’ll be able to make your scheduled trip, but I’d be happy to answer any and all questions you may have.
You guys sound pretty fit, and if you already have some decent mountain experience, you may want to consider Casaval Ridge, climber’s left of Avalanche Gulch. It’s just slightly more technical, more exposed, but way more interesting. Feels like you’re climbing in the Alps. Still nothing but ice axes and crampons required…
Also, if you guys accept the invitation to contribute to this blog I sent out a little while back, you can author new posts (like this one) instead of just adding comments to posts.
Anyway, I think we should make it a day trip with the families. Maybe we can take the kids to the exploratorium, or the beach, or something.
Tim: Wanna tag along?
We could also just clear the family’s schedules for a couple days and make it a trip to The City for everybody.
Does any of that work for you?