Monday, November 7, 2011

Ouray Ice Conditions

Direct North Face
 I took my trusty, Korean made, light SUV for a ride over the pass to see how the ice was doing in South Mineral Creek, usually the first ice of the season to form. While in the past I have enjoyed parking right across from these climbs, the kim chee mobile was cruxing through about 8+ inches of snow. With the current storm, only high clearance, corn-fed trucks will make it down the road and back easily.

The light was flat which made scoping the ice hard but needless to say it was on the thin side. Campground Couloir had tons of snow in it and looked wet, DNF looked thin and steep, and Snowblind looked close. While they could all be climbed on marginal pro, continued freezing temps mean that these climbs will be good to go for climbers who think placing an ice screw is more than a symbolic gesture.
Campground Couloir

Snow blind