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Learn to self-arrest

This meet-up is for all of you wanna-be mountaineers who would like to step-up your peak-bagging game or back country exploration possibilities to include crossing questionable, icy slopes. Scott Faulkenburg has volunteered to give some informal instruction on how to self-arrest using an ice axe.

The location of this meet-up will be determined at a later date because we do not know what snow conditions will be like in March yet. We will make every effort to pick a spot as close to Bakersfield as possible.

Necessary gear: crampons, ice axe, attire appropriate for rolling around in the snow, and the usual items you would bring on a winter hike. Scott mentioned the possibility of learning to do a group arrest (not sure if this is the right term). Members will need harnesses for that exercise. If you don’t have a climbing harness, don’t worry, you can still participate in the self-arrest part.

I think it goes without saying that this event carries with it some inherent dangers that most of our hikes do not have. You should be in good physical condition and mentally prepared for a challenge. To keep the activity manageable and safe, the group size has been limited to 10.

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  • Sam W.

    Hopefully I never have to self arrest, but if I do, I may owe Scott my life...! Thanks Scott for taking the time to share your knowledge with us...overall was fun and informative and the weather after the storm clearing was very nice...

    March 12, 2013

  • Tom B.

    Thank you Scott for taking time to teach us some great snow and ice travel skills. I hope one day we get a chance to use them in our mountaineering. A beautiful day in the mountains.

    March 10, 2013

  • Jill W.

    I second Keio's comment. What an opportunity! Thanks Scott.

    March 10, 2013

  • Brian O.

    Sorry to say I can't make this one....

    March 9, 2013

  • Brian O.

    Good luck out there, hope to catch up with you all in future.

    March 9, 2013

  • Tom B.

    I do not have an adventure pass and would like to catch a ride up to the trailhead. I will meet you all at Mike's Pizza in the morning and hope to hop along with someone.

    March 8, 2013

    • Jill W.

      Ok Tom. No problem. We have room.

      March 8, 2013

  • Scott F.

    Rock climbing or kayak helmet is best, but ski/bike helmets are good as well. Road to top is paved but may not be plowed and/or icy - they usually require chains for the last eight miles if the road is wet.

    You may want to duct tape or stick a tennis ball on the adze of the axe to prevent cutting your face - the adze is the non-pointy part of the axe handle.

    I will update road conditions if I get an update.

    March 8, 2013

    • Sam W.

      I do not have tennis balls, but I do have lots of band aids - will try to remember to bring them.

      March 8, 2013

  • Shannon

    Rock climbing type helmet or skiing/snowboarding type helmet? (I've got an extra one or two of both if anyone needs to borrow. Let me know.)

    March 8, 2013

  • Jill W.

    Also remember these items: helmet, ice ax, crampons, adventure pass per car ,climbing harness (if you have one) maybe snowshoes...the spot we're going to is 200yards from the car, but you may want to snowshoe around afterwards.

    March 8, 2013

  • Jill W.

    Ok. After much fretting over the weather, and a conversation with Scott F. 'we've decided to go ahead with the plan. 4wd and chains are advised. Even so, the road up to Mt. Pinos may be a challenge, or not. We won't know until we get there. Because we won't know the condition of the road, Scott recommended meeting at the Mountain Mike's Pizza/ shopping center parking lot about 10 miles up the road from the Frazier Park Exit off the 5. We'll meet at 8:30. Is anyone interested in carpolling from Bakersfield? I have room for 2 others beside Sam, Keio and myself.

    March 8, 2013

  • Shannon

    I've not been to this trailhead before. Are any dirt roads involved? I'm just wondering if I should drive my suv or tiny compact.

    March 8, 2013

  • Shannon

    www.dot.ca.gov is reporting that the 5 is open now; it had closed this morning.

    March 8, 2013

  • Tom B.

    Diid the Grapevine and Mt. Pinos area get pummeled with snow like we did here on the east side?

    March 8, 2013

    • Rafael M.

      Yes. Snow level this morning was around 2'500' on Adelaide as well as Grapevine Peak.

      March 8, 2013

  • suzane k.

    Jill, I am sad that I will no longer be able to attend. I am looking forward for to meeting you soon. Cheers.

    March 7, 2013

  • Rafael M.

    Looks like I'll have to back out. I have the kids that weekend.

    February 28, 2013

  • Lee K.

    I am soooo bummed that I will not be back from Washington DC in time for this... :(

    February 22, 2013

    • Jill W.

      Next time. Thanks for taking yourself off the list to make room for others.

      1 · February 22, 2013

  • Jill W.

    Still looking for a location and am open to suggestions. Think: steep, icy, treeless slope. Yes, the MR route up Whitney has been mentioned by several parties, but I prefer to keep it on the west side or in the KRV if possible.

    February 21, 2013

    • Alice

      I'll be scouting out SNP by next weekend. Jill and I went up Jordan Peak last Monday but saw nothing good.

      February 22, 2013

    • Jill W.

      Well...Alice spotted a steep slope with an old fallen tree at the bottom complete with broken off branches to impale oneself on. She thought it might provide extra motivation to self-arrest properly.

      February 22, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Looking forward to learning to self-arrest and meeting other hikers

    February 20, 2013

  • Tom B.

    Good new snow - we should be able to get some good snow time in.

    February 20, 2013

  • Tom B.

    I have a reasonable amount of self arrest experince and would be interested in practise and sharing.

    February 7, 2013

    • Jill W.

      Yes you do ,Tom. Scott mentioned the site we pick may determine how many can go. Can you keep an eye out for a good location, with lots of space?

      February 8, 2013

  • Tom B.

    If we don't get some more snow soon, it may take a long drive to get to good snow. I will wait to commit until I see where this trip is scheduled.

    February 5, 2013

  • Jordan F.

    Thanks for setting this up, it's a great opportunity.

    February 5, 2013

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