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Links for Safe Mountaineering
#53172 05/19/18 08:38 AM
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This thread is a follow up to Bob West's suggestion, from another thread, that the Whitney Forum post more safety information related to mountaineering on steep snow/ice. Please feel free to contribute information and comments targeted for anyone climbing/descending the chute on the main trail (instead of the switchbacks), or the Mountaineer's Route. It can also apply to conditions where one has to traverse somewhat level terrain but through slippery conditions with dangerous exposure below - which often happens on the back side just before the final ascent, and near trail crest. These conditions can present at any time of the season, but mostly occur in the shoulder seasons (spring/fall) and, of course, in the winter.

Please feel free to propose additional links and comments.

Proper Gear:
Alpine Skills Equipment List

Gear List for Mt Shasta John Muir Route

Guide Services:
Sierra Mountain Guides (Bishop)

Sierra Mountain Center (Bishop)

REI Events and Courses

Mountaineering Courses:
SWS Mountain Guides

Mountain Education.com

Sierra Mountaineering

Books
Mountaineering: Freedom of the Hills 9th Ed

Mount Whitney Complete Trailhead to Summit Guide, Paul Richins Jr

Climbing Mt. Whitney, Peter Croft

One Best Hike: Mount Whitney, Elizabeth Wenk

Mount Whitney: Mountain Lore from the Whitney Portal

Accidents Happen, Learn from Them:
American Alpine Club Accident Reports

Inyo Search and Rescue (SAR) Mission Reports

Whitney Zone - 'What Can Go Wrong on Whitney'

The Dangers of Glissading

Outside Magazine Article (link might expire)

Miscellaneous:
Eastern Sierra Avalanch Center

Summit Post - Mt Whitney

Supertopo.com High Sierra Info and Technical Climbing Blogs

YouTube (NOT A SUBSTITUTE FOR PERSONAL INSTRUCTION & PRACTICE):
Search Results for 'Self Arrest with Ice Axe'
GOOD & BAD ADVICE HERE - DON'T RELY SOLELY ON VIDEOS - SEEK OUT ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Last edited by SierraNevada; 08/16/18 07:48 AM.
Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
SierraNevada #53174 05/19/18 09:50 AM
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Stories of problems on Mt Whitney:   What can go wrong on Whitney

Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
Steve C #53175 05/19/18 12:41 PM
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Thanks for the follow up. Can these threads be added to the "Please Read" thread so that they stay permanently?

Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
Bob West #53176 05/19/18 12:56 PM
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Hey Bob, I'm hoping people add to this list before Steve locks it as a "sticky thread" someplace. My quick effort was just a first cut at it. For example, we should add

Inyo Mission Reports

I edited my post to add more depth. Hoping others will weigh in.

Last edited by SierraNevada; 05/19/18 01:21 PM.
Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
SierraNevada #53177 05/19/18 03:30 PM
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Add the dangers of glissading:

http://blog.alpineinstitute.com/2008/08/dangers-of-glissading.html

My climbing partners and I would never, never glissade off a mountain. We always walked down, with ice axe at the ready if a self-arrest was necessary. My experience from California, Scotland and European Alps.

I'd add more, but it would be rock and ice rescue technical stuff, which a SAR team would be doing if necessary.

Last edited by Bob West; 05/19/18 03:50 PM.
Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
Bob West #53178 05/19/18 04:05 PM
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I added it under Miscellaneous. "Never never" is pretty strong, but yeah, many people get hurt or killed doing it wrong.

Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
SierraNevada #53183 05/20/18 02:12 PM
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I would delete the youtube. I don't know how many people I have spoken to have said after being asked, "Have you had any basic snow skills training?"..."I watched a youtube video."

This I have seen what this has led to...and it ain't pretty.

Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
SierraNevada #53186 05/20/18 03:23 PM
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Under books, I would add:

Mount Whitney Complete Trailhead to Summit Guide, Paul Richins Jr

Climbing Mt. Whitney, Peter Croft

One Best Hike: Mount Whitney, Elizabeth Wenk

Mount Whitney: Mountain Lore from the Whitney Portal

All these books have some sections on preparation and safety, apart from helpful explanations of the routes.

I personally have only read parts of Richins, and the route descriptions were better than some youtube videos.





Last edited by valiseverywhere; 05/20/18 03:26 PM.
Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
SierraNevada #53187 05/20/18 03:37 PM
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Also, a link to the local avalanche forecast would be good.

Should this be Eastern Sierra Avalanche Center , or there are closer observations?

Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
wbtravis #53188 05/20/18 03:58 PM
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WBT, as you can see from the disclaimer, I also have reservations about including YouTube. But this is the world we're living in now, so I'm going to wait for more opinions on this one. I hope others weigh in on it.

Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
valiseverywhere #53189 05/20/18 04:03 PM
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Originally Posted By: valiseverywhere
Also, a link to the local avalanche forecast would be good.

Should this be Eastern Sierra Avalanche Center , or there are closer observations?


Added the Eastern Sierra Avalanche link - good idea.

Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
valiseverywhere #53190 05/20/18 04:13 PM
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Books added, Valiseverywhere.
Totally agree with adding Croft and Richins.

Not sure how much Elizabeth Wenk covers this topic, but she writes a good guidebook.

Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
SierraNevada #53194 05/20/18 11:39 PM
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Some of you already know this, but WhitneyZone was created when another site jettisoned the "How Not To Die On Whitney" posts. They were saved and are still here. The real object of this forum is still "How Not To Die On Whitney".


Verum audaces non gerunt indusia alba. - Ipsi dixit MCMLXXII
Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
wagga #53197 05/21/18 07:15 AM
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They also "jettisoned" a long thread about waste management (toilets and wag bags). Thanks to Steve, we have a place to discuss these things.

Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
SierraNevada #53198 05/21/18 09:06 AM
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Originally Posted By: SierraNevada
WBT, as you can see from the disclaimer, I also have reservations about including YouTube. But this is the world we're living in now, so I'm going to wait for more opinions on this one. I hope others weigh in on it.


This story will give you an idea what the problem is...

3 days after an avalanche on Mt. Baldy in the January 2017 throngs went up the Ski Hut Trail with there Microjunk and trekking poles to climb up the Bowl to Mt. Baldy. There were 9 avalanche tracks in the Bowl.

The skilled people we talked to up and down before conditions worsened at the very sunny and warm day soften the snow. We watched people go through a slide path in groups of 4 to 7, where we went through one at a time. Most people had light traction devices, poles and ideas of doing the Bowl. We had decided early on the Bowl was not safe and watched more than a few people crash and burn in the Bowl.

This is what is coming to Mt. Whitney. Last season, we had someone die on the MR with light traction devices as their primary traction device and someone who went over the falls above Mirror Lake with same gear. This is primarily a SoCal playground in the spring.

I believe a youtube self arrest video encourages people like these to rent gear they have no business using. Most don't even know the primary skill they have to have is recognition, followed by self belay. I think it better just to tell these people to come back in August.

Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
wbtravis #53203 05/21/18 02:14 PM
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Whatever happened to VersatileFred?


Journey well...
Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
+ @ti2d #53210 05/21/18 10:13 PM
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After he was blocked on wpsmb, he decided it was time to change his pastime to other areas. Unfortunate.

Re: Links for Safe Mountaineering
Steve C #53236 05/23/18 08:40 PM
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Feature Topics box now has this thread.


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