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Mt. Conness


Tuolumne Meadows, California USA


Trip Report
Conness Conditions
Monday July 25, 2011 5:17pm
JULY 24 completed an ascent of West Ridge of Conness. Before our trip, I was looking for info regarding the approach…couldn't find any recent info. So for those of you looking or wondering: tons of snow, but you knew that.

More specifically, the upper section of the "X-country" section (leaving the Carnegie Institute) below the waterfall/cliff section is totally snowed in.
The waterfall/cliffy section WITHOUT snow.
The waterfall/cliffy section WITHOUT snow.
Credit: mlilly
Options include staying wide right of the cliffs and then traversing across the top of the cliffs climber's right to left. OR picking your way up the center of the waterfall/cliffy section moving from climber's right to left. This is how we descended this section. Steep and a bit committing at times, but do-able. We did not attempt to do the suggested approach on this section--climbing the weakness on the left-side of the cliffs. This section was covered in what looked to be STEEP snow. So, option three--bring ice axes and crampons!

The next section, after the cliffy section, is a monster snow field that leads up to "the Notch". The snowfield is totally sun-cupped from a few inches deep to 18" deep--firm enough to walk on in the a.m. and soft enough to launch down or glissade in the p.m. Very little post-holing. We walked up the sun-cups to gain the East Ridge to the Notch to the summit plateau.
Looking down the East Ridge from the Notch
Looking down the East Ridge from the Notch
Credit: mlilly

There was snow in the down climb gully but it was passable. A small snowfield on the summit down climb, but a small section of 3rd-class rock is passable on both sides of it.

All in all, snowy but definitely do-able. We hike in our approach shoes--no crampons, no gaiters (they would not help much), no mountaineers boots. That said, we were wet the entire day. We did each carry a trekking pole--very helpful.

Weather was perfect, climb was outstanding. We were not the only people to have the idea to do it. There were at least three OTHER parties on the West Ridge and at least two on the North Ridge.


  Trip Report Views: 2,188
mlilly
About the Author
mlilly is a trad climber from Nevada.

Comments
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snowhazed

Trad climber
Oaksterdam, CA
  Jul 25, 2011 - 05:51pm PT
thanks for the update!
squishy

Mountain climber
  Jul 25, 2011 - 06:28pm PT
I was in one of the parties on the North Ridge on Sunday, we did the descent after dark, watched the sun set from the summit. Lucky we had mountain boots and ice axes, after dark it got icy and spicy, didn't hit the road till 2am. There was a fast couple free soloing late in the day, they were hauling ass. There was lots of snow left on the approach as well, great day for an epic!! Should be better in a couple weeks.



Fluoride

Trad climber
West Los Angeles, CA/Joshua Tree
  Jul 25, 2011 - 06:23pm PT
Thanks for the report. So much snow up there this season.

More pics!! :)
survival

Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
  Jul 25, 2011 - 06:24pm PT
MORE PIX!!!!
squishy

Mountain climber
  Jul 25, 2011 - 06:27pm PT
as you wish





micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
  Jul 28, 2011 - 04:44pm PT
Thanks for the intel!
Roxy

Trad climber
CA Central Coast
  Jul 28, 2011 - 10:09pm PT
Thanks for posting dude
squishy

Mountain climber
  Jul 28, 2011 - 10:23pm PT
No problem, here's some mountain porn to syke someone up, there's a bunch more posted here: http://mountainsnstuff.org/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=2296





Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
  Jul 28, 2011 - 10:23pm PT
high quality stokage
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Mt. Conness - West Ridge 5.6 - Tuolumne Meadows, California USA. Click to Enlarge
One of Tuolumne's finest ridge climbs.
Photo: Greg Barnes
Other Routes on Mt. Conness
Mt. Conness - North Ridge 5.6 - Tuolumne Meadows, California USA. Click for details.
North Ridge, 5.6
Mt. Conness
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Mt. Conness - Southwest Face 5.10c - Tuolumne Meadows, California USA. Click for details.
Southwest Face, 5.10c
Mt. Conness
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Tuolumne's proudest face.