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Thread: 410 conditions

  1. #1
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    410 conditions

    Just the facts:
    Skookum/White -- open
    Ranger Ck. open to 1/2 mile before the shelter
    Suntop -- lots of snow visible - but I didn't investigate
    Fawn ridge -- lots of snow visible - but I didn't investigate

    The Blah Blah Blah story:
    I rode Skookum/White River yesterday while a friend of mine hiked/ran Palisades/Ranger/White River.

    Skookum/White River is wide open and in great shape. Get it while you can! Couple of trees down is all.

    Snow on Ranger starts about 4 or 5 switchbacks from the shelter and it's 5 or so inches deep and has a bulletproof coating on it. Lasts beyond the clearcut on Palisades too. One interesting note, she came across bear tracks on the trail right before the clearcut on Palisades.

    Jackd

  2. #2
    Not-quite-geezer RVer
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    Hmmmm.... interesting! We're supposed to be heading to Portland this weekend but might have to make a little side trip.

    Thanks for the report.
    "Rollin' on 20s and 27.5s" ride reports and more at WWW.DEBCAR.COM : Debbie and Carey's RV Travel Website

  3. #3
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    Re: 410 conditions

    Jack is back with the pre-winter snow report!

    Pete & I will attempt a lap Saturday with a small saw so the chainsaw teams save a couple of cuts next spring.

    Also thanks for helping Loomis' sawyering efforts on the 410 trails for over a decade!

    Riders these couple of trees shouldn't stop you if you are wondering at all. I would really love a last chance report from up ranger down palisades. Bring yak trax if you are so bold...
    Last edited by paleo; 11-22-2013 at 01:25 AM.

  4. #4
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    Jack, did you ride WR all the way to Corral Pass? I gotta think that is open based on your comments. A buddy and I plan to ride up Skookum, 410, Corral Pass Rd. and then down WR to our car maybe on Tuesday. Thanks for the intel!

  5. #5
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    yes, WP to CP rd is open. Ranger Creek Trail is open past Little Ranger but has bulletproof snow the last 1/3 mile to the shelter.
    Jack


    Quote Originally Posted by SpryIP View Post
    Jack, did you ride WR all the way to Corral Pass? I gotta think that is open based on your comments. A buddy and I plan to ride up Skookum, 410, Corral Pass Rd. and then down WR to our car maybe on Tuesday. Thanks for the intel!

  6. #6
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    Ranger/Palisades/WR/Skookum

    Quote Originally Posted by paleo View Post
    I would really love a last chance report from up ranger down palisades. Bring yak trax if you are so bold...
    (Okay, ye asks, ye shall receive!)

    Things started out a bit frosty:



    By happy coincidence, I happened to arrive just as the Saw Gang was getting ready and heading off:



    Lower Ranger was nice and easy riding. Well, "easy" may be the wrong word, but the surface was dry and clear and allowed a slow, steady grind up for about 4 miles.



    Eventually, snow started to appear and made things much more challenging and interesting:



    The snow was not deep, but it was very icy which made it quite tricky to even walk up, considering the steep and narrow benchcut:



    Several sparkling, babbling brooks broke up the routine:



    After just over 1 mile of trudging gingerly up the slick snow, the cabin finally appeared:



    From there the Palisades trail led gently upwards, and it looked even less traveled than Ranger. I started laying down what I reckon may be "last tracks" on Palisades for the season. Which was interesting, because I think we got "first tracks" on Palisades in Spring 2012. One day, I'm gonna be in this area in the summer!!:



    Barely traveled by humans anyway... other critters seem to be using it as a highway:



    One nice view:



    Deserves another:



    The snow continued for 1 mile past the shelter. Where the trail was flat or downhill, I managed to ride some of this section, but it was still mostly too icy to do much with other than walk. Finally, the trail broke out into the sun on top of the cliffs, and things cleared nicely. A view of one on the unlikeliest airstrips appeared far below:



    Icy b&w bike porn 1:



    Icy b&w bike porn 2:



    Fantastic views of Rainier to be had on this bluebird day:



    Er, I hope my bike's securely planted there... long way down!



    I had thought I was out of the woods, but soon the trail headed back into the trees, and the snow returned for another 1/2 mile or so. This snow was quite rideable though, being very firm but not iced up. Required significant pedalling effort to maintain forward progress even downhill which was interesting.



    Wicked Big Cliffs:



    Skookum Falls as seen from high across the valley:



    The aptly-named White River:



    A small waterfall briefly interrupted what had finally turned into an excellent, fast techy descent:



    The infamous Palisades super-tight switchbacks. Unsurprisingly, I cleaned zero of these:



    The Ladder, with a couple of hikers above. Unsurprisingly, I declined to attempt the descent:



    The Big Waterfall was dramatically frozen:



    I took White River up and back to the Ranger TH. It was in great shape and a fun ride:



    On a lark, I next decided to explore the east extension of Skookum, which dead-ends at the Wilderness boundary of the National Park. Unfortunately this segment is frankly a braided, confusing, non-flowy mess, and I can't recommend it much. But it was interesting to check out. Once:



    No bikes beyond here:



    I passed through the TH again, and stumbled upon a couple of guys loading bikes who I'd met at the start of the ride.

    In the near-freezing early morning, one of them had had a frozen-up rear hub whose pawls wouldn't engage and was getting no forward drive. He was about to have to give up on his ride, but I had had a brainwave and suggested that he try sticking his wheel in front of a running exhaust pipe to defrost it, so I was delighted to discover that my MacGyver skillz had let them successfully complete their ride. Yeah!

    Speaking of Skookum, I had another 30 minutes before dark (meaning about 4pm!!) so I did a short out-and-back down the "real" part of Skookum:



    A couple hours earlier, I had been up there somewhere:



    By another strange and happy coincidence, I arrived back at the TH at exactly the same time as the Saw Gang. It was like we'd been riding together all day. We swapped stories and beers until it started getting seriously cold and dark and called it a day. Great to meet y'all, and thanks again for the sawing and the brew!

    Cheers,
    Carey
    "Rollin' on 20s and 27.5s" ride reports and more at WWW.DEBCAR.COM : Debbie and Carey's RV Travel Website

  7. #7
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    Indeed Carey great to meet you!

    I would have loaned you my traction widgets if I had any clue what mad idea we had put into your head. PM or heck tell everyone next time you pass through again. Well done sir!

    Len/"Leo"

  8. #8
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    a few pictures from the "Saw Gang"













    G O N Z

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    410 conditions

    I have this picture in my head of this team of sawyers, let's call them "The Saw-vengers," all hanging around their superhero mansion (an as yet undisclosed PNW location deep in the mountains), sharpening their saws and trading tips on chain oil. They're a strange breed; misfits to some, heroes to most, each one a master of his tool. In a nearby closet, a dozen flannel leotards and capes hang at the ready.

    Suddenly the red phone in the Situation Room rings again. Duty calls! Instantly they spring into action. Backpacks and saws a-swinging, they jump in the SawCar and speed toward the newest trail in distress.

    The battle is on! Saws buzz, chips fly, and finally the dark cloud of evil recedes back into the forest. Mountain bikers are saved and the trails free for schralping once more. Crowds cheer. Babies are kissed. Generals salute. Endorsement deals are signed and screenplays are pitched. No matter how near or how far, no downed tree is safe from the Saw-Vengers!

    You guys are so freakin' awesome- we are very lucky to have such a dedicated crew up here! Cheers to you all!

  10. #10
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    This entire thread is a whole lot of awesome.

  11. #11
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    410 conditions

    Quote Originally Posted by Nsteele View Post
    I have this picture in my head of this team of sawyers, let's call them "The Saw-vengers," all hanging around their superhero mansion (an as yet undisclosed PNW location deep in the mountains), sharpening their saws and trading tips on chain oil. They're a strange breed; misfits to some, heroes to most, each one a master of his tool. In a nearby closet, a dozen flannel leotards and capes hang at the ready.

    Suddenly the red phone in the Situation Room rings again. Duty calls! Instantly they spring into action. Backpacks and saws a-swinging, they jump in the SawCar and speed toward the newest trail in distress.

    The battle is on! Saws buzz, chips fly, and finally the dark cloud of evil recedes back into the forest. Mountain bikers are saved and the trails free for schralping once more. Crowds cheer. Babies are kissed. Generals salute. Endorsement deals are signed and screenplays are pitched. No matter how near or how far, no downed tree is safe from the Saw-Vengers!

    You guys are so freakin' awesome- we are very lucky to have such a dedicated crew up here! Cheers to you all!
    This is probably the best MTBR WA post ever!

    Cheers,
    Mike

  12. #12
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    Re: 410 conditions

    Thanks again Jack for reminding us this location is still in-play for a couple of edge season weeks. We should be chasing Casey the full time RVer down the coast to warmer weather.

    For the record: The purple echo bar oil is super sticky and the purple is way more visible than the brown stihl bar oil.I'm a Stihl fan but just sayin...

    Thanks Much NSteele,
    From our man caves... you made our season. ;-)

  13. #13
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    I plan to get out there tomorrow for one last higher elevation adventure, hope there has been some melt....

  14. #14
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    The conditions are perfect on Skookum and White River. We rode up Skookum, 410 to Corral Pass and then down WR. We also made a detour up to Snoquera Falls from WR. We didn't encounter any snow. Cheers to the The Saw-Vengers. Awesome work guys!

  15. #15
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    Not sure how much longer its going to last but yesterday was amazing. Up Ranger, down Palisades. Bit of snow on Palisades around the old clearcut and then a couple more patches further down but overall great conditions "hero dirt" as the kids say.

  16. #16
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    Re: 410 conditions

    410 Last Chance 2013:

    Per special requests of people we see on the trail every time one of us is on 410 we will peddle up ranger for 3 each 10" nuisances. We'll get in a modest amount of that fair climb with the minimum of15lbs of saw weight in one pack.

    Saturday more 410 fun sawing and riding then winter on Sunday and we will retreat until our 410 buddies start calling for our help.

    If we miss you on the trail fri/sat we will see you next spring and enjoy your winter (at least if its outside and involves being off the internet just for fun).
    Last edited by paleo; 12-04-2013 at 10:39 PM.

  17. #17
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    Re: 410 conditions

    The 3 on Ranger are gone.
    There are 6 on the snoquera falls loop.
    And I got in about 3000' of out of shape climbing so that was humbling.

    At the moment there are just a couple left on Palisades thanks to helpful bro's moving what they could.

    Thanks to every soul that knows instinctively we should all do what we can to avoid ever stepping over anything twice.
    Last edited by paleo; 12-04-2013 at 10:42 PM.

  18. #18
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    Extra credit project is done thanks at least 80% to Nuzzy. Drumroll while we wait for a couple of pix from Jack.

    Saw two bros roll by and straight into the camp like the internet helps connect those watching this space 30 minutes after we were done. Good timing fellas!

  19. #19
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    edited
    Last edited by Nuzzy; 01-23-2014 at 11:03 PM.
    Raleigh XXIX

  20. #20
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    410 conditions

    Cool pics!

    Another epic battle twixt good and evil. The SawVengers save the day yet again!

  21. #21
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    I saw it with my own eyes -- those boys sure know how to handle big wood!

    Jack


    Quote Originally Posted by Nsteele View Post
    Cool pics!

    Another epic battle twixt good and evil. The SawVengers save the day yet again!

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by jackd49 View Post
    I saw it with my own eyes -- those boys sure know how to handle big wood!





    Thanks again Jack for your help! Looking forward to riding it in the spring.
    Raleigh XXIX

  23. #23
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    Hall of Fame

    Hall of Famers; Len and Eric

    Quote Originally Posted by Nuzzy View Post


    Saw Team 1
    Blowdowns 0



    ...
    G O N Z

  24. #24
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    Re: 410 conditions

    A Man and his Log


    Borrowed from "A Boy and his Dog".
    Thankfully it was not a sarcastic log like the dog.
    No he did not eat the log but if I was the log I would disagree.

    Therefore the comparison for your riding and intellectualizing pleasure.
    Last edited by paleo; 12-04-2013 at 10:06 PM.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by paleo View Post
    A Man and his Log


    Pure zen. That's all I can say.
    Raleigh XXIX

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