Home > Trip Reports > May 11, 2003, Earl, Bean

May 11, 2003, Earl, Bean

Posted by Jim Oker on 5/11/03 11:55pm
Skip and I decided that the snow we found in the Bean Creek area was worth another visit, so we headed first up Bean (?? - not sure if it really has a name, but it is the peak at the northwest area of the upper Bean Creek basin - not the reddish peak at the northeast end). We thought about dropping into 4th of july creek and over to beverly creek for a loop and a side trip up iron, but decided that there was such good looking skiing right in front of us that we would just drop back into Bean Creek from the top. We had nice corn on a firm base, then hit a rotten snow region briefly until we figured out where the firm snow was hanging out, and then got lots more really nice spring turns down to the flats of the broad area of the basin. From there we did a fun climbing traverse up to the ridge that connects to the northern end of Earl's summit ridge, and decided to ski the steep trees and gully on the west face (it was so much fun last week...). We had a few inches of nice corn on a firm base until we got into the narrowest part of the gully, where the mush started. Fortunately that just lasted for about 100vf and then we traversed away from the bottom of the gully onto firmer and still steep-ish slopes that brought us down to more mush on the lower angle slopes near the creek. Not enough mush all told to make us regret sleeping in and enjoying the solitude that a late start often allows (y'all had gone home by the time we were starting our last descent!!). We managed to have really nice turns for about 3000+vf, some "amusing" but fast mush and woods skiing for another 700vf, and about 800vf of hiking. It looks like the amount of hiking for this area will be increasing quickly (snow melting out somewhat fast in woods and on ridges, plenty still in upper basins though), and the west face gully may soon have too little snow to safely bridge the water that must be flowing down there somewhere.

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Jim Oker
2003-05-12 06:55:55