Saturday: Was a productive and beautiful spring weekend in the Tahoe area! Miracle March has left and the temps are warming, and the difference in one week in the Mount Rose area was very noticeable. If you remember/read, last weekend I did W7N/WC-003 Tamarack Peak in waist deep powder, this weekend I was literally on the other side of Mt Rose highway walking on hard pack easily going 2mph faster… Looking back at Tamarack on Saturday, what was covered the weekend before was already showing bare. So Spring is here, and while MM delivered an awesome 12 feet to help our meager snow pack, it’s already melting off. Before I get into the SOTA side of things, lets rehash this for a second. At the end of January, we were at a 30% snow pack percentage for the ’17/’18 season. At the end of the March we were at 85% of our average… Even with the amazing ’16/’17 season we are still not out of the woods, and we could easily slip back into a drought scenario if we keep having these 70-90% snow pack years. Hopefully we do not accept this as the new norm.. Okay hippy tree hugging climate change PSA is out of the way!! So on Saturday I decided it was time to finish off the Mt Rose section and consequently have finally finished WC-001 thru WC-005 in the process. This is an unnamed peak listed as 9225 (W7N/WC-005). This like Tamarack is one of those i would suggest is easier in the winter then the summer, especially if snowshoeing on hard pack snow..
You can go directly to the peak off trail, there is only really one hard ascent at the end, which you would have to do in the summer too, but the hard pack snow with good grip snowshoes (or crampons would be a good option too) will make the ascent easier to deal with. I would not actually call the ascent that hard, it’s ~800 feet long with 280 feet of climbing for that last final push. The route is 1.7 miles each way. GSP Track image below:
This day was definitely getting warm, and the avalanche danger was getting moderate, however the ascent route is on the north facing side, so that did keep the avy danger down some during the afternoon warming/wet slide concerns.
Easy to get to this location: drive up Mt Rose Highway, and park on either side of the side of the road at Tahoe Meadows/Ophir Creek. (1/2 mile shy of Rose pass).
So next up is an apologies to the chasers, I tend to get a little ADD on Saturdays with the S2S chasing myself. It is hard to focus on just the activation when I am seeing regions i know are reachable, so a lot of times I tend to go try S2S chase while leaving my working freq. If it seems like i have wandered off, it’s bc I’m probably S2S someone.
I spent two hours on the summit on Saturday between chasing S2S (and waiting for a few folks from some of the alerts) and working the activation. I ended up getting S2S with KI4SVM, KH7AL, and VE6IXD. All in all 14 QSO for this summit. Trying to get my QSO count per activation up too!
|18:22z||N4EX||14MHz||SSB||s3x3, r4x4. into NC|
|18:23z||W0MNA||14MHz||SSB||5×7 to Ks, thnx Gary|
|18:25z||W0ERI||14MHz||SSB||5×7 to Ks|
|18:25z||K9IR||14MHz||SSB||s5x5 r3x3 chicago|
|18:39z||NS7P||7MHz||SSB||r5x6, s5x5, Thnx Phil|
|18:57z||K8TE||14MHz||SSB||r5x5, s5x9 NM|
|18:59z||WA2USA||14MHz||SSB||2×2, 5×9 IN|
|19:00z||KD0YOD||14MHz||SSB||5×7 to Minn|
|19:07z||KI4SVM||14MHz||SSB||s2s to w4g|
|19:12z||WA9STI||7MHz||SSB||weak 3×3, 5×7 to LA|
|19:14z||NG6R||7MHz||SSB||r4x3, s5x7, thnx Jerry|
|19:15z||KK7BV||7MHz||SSB||4×5, 5×7 in AZ|
|20:12z||VE6IXD||14MHz||SSB||s2s, 2×2, s3x3|
So earlier in the week I’d been talking with N6DNM (Dmitry) about his upcoming Tahoe weekend and working to get a chase on him as well as hopefully doing a double activation with him. Saturday night we agreed we would do Big Hill (W6/NS-290). He’d need to finish up a couple of things, and then he would roll down and meet me in South Lake, and we’d fight the Easter Sunday traffic out of Tahoe down the 50 and to our peak.. So this is one of the few drive up peaks I’ve done. I keep telling myself to explore this side of Desolation, but seem to barely get past Wright’s Lake road headed West. FWIW, I am planning a trip in August to Loon Lake for camping, there I will go after McKinstry and Guide peak. That assumes i do not go buy a side-by-side or some other OHV and approach them via the Rubicon.
It was yet another amazing Sierra Nevada day, and even though the peak is at 6100 feet, no hoody was needed, just shorts, hat, sunglasses, and away we went.
This peak is doable all winter long technically as they keep the road to Big Hill plowed since it is an NFS Fire Tower: Not a lot to write about, so here is my QSO log, and then pictures from the rest of the weekend will be below. 13 contacts, N6DNM and I changed positions for SOTA complete and 1 S2S.
|20:10z||AE0AX||14MHz||SSB||S2S, r3x3, s4x4|
|20:16z||KK6YYD||14MHz||SSB||2×2, just above me in Placerville|
|20:17z||K8HU||14MHz||SSB||r2x2, s5x7 VA|
|20:35z||KG7LR||144MHz||FM||FQ to LOdi s5x4|
|20:50z||W6JMP||7MHz||SSB||r5x5, s5x7 SAC ground skip|
|21:08z||WB6DZJB||144MHz||FM||r5x5, s5x7 Oakley California|
|21:12z||WJ6N||144MHz||FM||Barry down in Galt, FQ|
|21:28z||KD0IPI||14MHz||SSB||s5x9, r5x7 MN|
|21:28z||VA2MO||14MHz||SSB||s5x7 r5x3 DX to QC|
|21:35z||KF5ZFL||14MHz||SSB||r: 5x7s5x9 AR|
Some parting shots from Saturday:
Some parting shots from Sunday: