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Mt. Shasta Casaval Ridge

Mt. Shasta Casaval Ridge. The best south side route on Shasta, with incredible views and an aesthetic line up a spiny ridge. Maximum 10 (experienced) climbers. RSVPs open Wednesday, March 27th at 8:00 pm.

See the video of last year's climb here.

How RSVPs work: Prospective members who have joined on Meetup but not yet paid for any membership may attend one event for free. Beyond this, you must be a current official SMG "MEMBER" to attend. All events open for RSVPs at 8:00pm on the Wednesday approximately three weeks prior. RSVPs are first-come first-served and are subject to event organizer review and final approval. All attendees must meet the pre-requisites. Prospective members will still need to sign the SMG Waiver / Assumption of Risk and provide emergency contact information to attend. Please provide the required information when you RSVP. Because this event occurs on public lands it is open to the public.

Not an official SMG member yet? Join the club here.

__________________________________________________

THE DETAILS

Dates: Friday April 26 - Sunday April 27, 2012

Location: Mt. Shasta 14,162, Northern California

Route: Casaval Ridge

Appropriate For: Experienced snow climbers

SMG MEMBERS ONLY Resources:

Fitness and Difficulty Level: Difficult

Max Elevation: 14,100 ft

Starting Elevation: 7,000 ft

Weather: NOAA Forecast for Mt. Shasta

Pre-Requisites: Participants must meet all the following:

  • Experience with winter conditions climbing and camping above 10,000 feet
  • Prior summit of a 14,000 feet mountain on snow
  • Experience climbing with an ice axe, crampons on exposed terrain
  • Knowledge and/or experience with fixed lines and running belays
  • Show up with the appropriate clothing, gear, and equipment (or if you are an official member, reserve loaner gear from the club).
  • Attend as a prospective member or begin SMG membership, see links above.

__________________________________________________

ITINERARY

Friday, April 26: Meetup early at the Walmart parking lot (near Starbucks) to arrange carpooling and drive north. Drive to the trail head and pickup our passes and permits. From the Bunny Flat trail head we'll spend the morning and afternoon snowshoeing or skinning up the ridge to a camp near 11,000 ft on Casaval Ridge. We will spend some time and energy digging in to protect ourselves from likelihood of high winds, review a game plan for tomorrow and enjoy an awesome view as the sun sets.

Saturday, April 27th: With a pre-dawn start, we'll leave our high camp intact and ascend the ridge, through the Catwalk and on to the upper slopes above the Whitney Glacier. The route involves some steep and exposed snow climbing. Each climber must be confident on this type of terrain. We'll have some technical gear and rope but likely will not use it. We will shoot to summit before noon. Our descent will be down the Avalanche Gulch route, with a traverse across the slopes above Helen Lake to regain our high camp.

If we are still in good shape, we can dismantle camp and drive all the way back to Sacramento. If not, we will enjoy another evening at our airy perch.

__________________________________________________

REQUIRED CLOTHING, EQUIPMENT AND GEAR

Need more detailed descriptions?

Clothing

  • 2 pair wicking, breathable baselayers, top and bottom
  • Insulating, weather-resistant mid-layer, top and bottom
  • Wind and waterproof shell layer, top and bottom
  • Insulating fill jacket
  • 2 pair socks, liners
  • Mountaineering boots
  • Lightweight liner gloves
  • Waterproof gloves or mittens
  • Glacier sunglasses
  • Warm hat - the touque!
  • Sun hat
  • Balaclava

Equipment

  • 40 - 60 liter pack. Leave some room for carrying group gear.
  • Trekking poles with snow baskets
  • Shelter, or share group shelter
  • Minimum 15-degree sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad(s)
  • Mug / bowl and spoon
  • Food
  • Water bottles or containers. Water bladders not recommended.
  • Headlamp w/extra batteries
  • Compass, GPS also recommended if available
  • Map
  • Sunscreen
  • Camera, extra batteries
  • Small knife
  • Personal items, medications
  • Emergency items - keep it small.
  • Snow shovel if you have one

Gear

  • Lightweight mountaineering harness
  • Hard shell mountaineering helmet
  • Mountain axe
  • Crampons, fit to your boots
  • 2 large locking carabiners
  • Two 48” loop sewn runner slings or 9/16" webbing tied with a water knot
  • Skis or snowshoes

Group items provided by SMG

  • Technical climbing gear: ropes, protection for rock, ice and snow, assorted slings and cordage, locking carabiners
  • First Aid kit
  • Snow shovels
  • Some tents
  • Some stoves, pots
  • Radios

__________________________________________________

For questions or more information, please contact: Wayne Fry, SMG Event Organizer, from the email link on his profile.

Climb on!

Join or login to comment.

  • Scott A.

    Created a video for this trip, I thought that I might share: http://youtu.be/NcQwWwao4xA

    3 · August 13, 2013

    • Wayne

      Man, that was a good day. Thanks for sharing Scott. Great video.

      1 · August 13, 2013

    • Chris

      Great video... It was worth the wait! Now I want to go back!

      1 · August 13, 2013

  • Darren S.

    Hey team, congratulations on your summit and a route done in fine style. Being able to roll with the changes in weather and conditions is the mark of experience. Wish I could have been there to share the summit with you!
    Thank you to Wayne who put A LOT of work into this event!

    1 · May 1, 2013

  • Alex

    How did the route for avalanche gulch look like on the way down

    April 28, 2013

    • Wayne

      Below red banks the route still looks good. Above that point there's a lot of loose rock. We chose to avoid the usual descent route near the thumb for that reason and to avoid dropping rocks on climbers below. Our descent line was through one of the chutes in red banks.

      April 28, 2013

    • Alex

      Thanks Wayne

      April 29, 2013

  • Art

    Any word of conditions on Green Butte? Did we miss it for this year?

    April 28, 2013

    • Art

      The slopes look really bare - I've never seen the mountain like this, not in spring. Do you know when the north side roads will open?

      April 28, 2013

    • Wayne

      Checkout the Shasta climbing advisory (released today). It looks like the Northgate trailhead is open to 4WD vehicles.

      April 28, 2013

  • Rick B.

    WOW! What a great trip, Wayne! You even calmed the winds. The West Face turned out to be a fantastic route! Thanks!

    April 28, 2013

    • Wayne

      Rick Epic, congratulations man. You climbed in fine style.

      April 28, 2013

    • Darren S.

      Rick, congratulations on summiting Shasta. When I got the news I knew you had to be excited at getting to 14k again.

      April 28, 2013

  • Scott A.

    great people + great mtn = SMG climb... can't wait for the next!

    April 28, 2013

  • Wayne

    I posted a graph of our descent route. Check out the temperatures recorded during this descent. We left the summit at 11am. The wireless temp sensor was helmet mounted.
    http://photos1.meetupstatic.com/photos/event/3/a/b/8/highres_229935032.jpeg

    1 · April 28, 2013

  • Wayne

    The updated route conditions we received from the ranger station Saturday morning indicated the route was done for the year. Both the hour glass and cat walk are in bad shape and deteriorating quickly. We went with plan B and climbed the west face from Casaval high camp.

    April 28, 2013

  • Chris

    Had to call an audible after finding out Casaval is no longer climbable but the trip was still top notch

    April 27, 2013

    • Brad G.

      Chris why is Casaval no longer climbable?

      April 28, 2013

  • Erica

    Though I gave it my best shot, there is no way I can finish my fieldwork by Friday morning. I'm crying crocodile tears about it.

    Sorry to back out at the last minute and have fun!

    April 24, 2013

    • Wayne

      Hi Erica, sorry to hear work is getting in the way on this one. I was looking forward to having you on the team. Hope to see you soon.

      April 24, 2013

    • Rick B.

      Yes, Erica, we all know how hard it is to get off of work! Gonna miss you, Terrie, Rick and Mike!

      April 25, 2013

  • Wayne

    Hey everyone, in my last message I closed with "See you Saturday!". Scratch that. I'll see you guys Friday morning.

    April 23, 2013

  • Rick S.

    I will be working

    April 23, 2013

    • Wayne

      Rick, sorry you can't make this one. I was looking forward to having you on the team.

      April 23, 2013

  • Terrie

    I tried, but this new date won't work.

    April 22, 2013

    • Wayne

      YOur killin' me Terrie, just killin' me... :)

      April 22, 2013

    • Darren S.

      Hey Terrie, I'm sorry about that. What can you do when the weather doesn't cooperate....thanks for being willing.

      April 22, 2013

  • Wayne

    Alright guys, stay tuned. I'll send an email out tomorrow with final details. Were still looking good for gear and carpooling. Another bright spot for this weekend is the full moon. Up at 10:30pm, down at 7:40am. Should be quite a sight.

    April 22, 2013

  • Marcus D.

    Have to work sat, sorry, just found out

    April 22, 2013

  • Mike

    Is anyone interested in checking this out mid-week? I am having trouble getting next Friday off.

    April 19, 2013

    • Mike

      Okay, how about Saturday-Sunday?

      April 21, 2013

    • Erica

      Sat-Sun is better with my schedule, but I'm still a newbie so I would rely on the expertise of other team members.

      April 21, 2013

  • Wayne

    Everyone, just a heads up. There's a chance there won't be much club gear available for loan out on this event. The Whitney trip (same weekend) will be using a lot of the gear. If you do need something let me know and I'll check.

    April 21, 2013

  • Wayne

    Alright guys. You can relax on this one. Were going to reschedule for next weekend. Sorry for the late notice. I think it's the smart move considering everything we have facing us right now. I'm going to call everyone tonight just to make sure you get the message.

    April 18, 2013

    • Wayne

      Al, were currently in a holding pattern on RSVPs. I'm going to give the folks who were already on the go list a chance to remain on the trip for next weekend. Your best bet is to add on to the wait list when it opens up.

      April 18, 2013

    • Brad

      Dang. Guess I jumped the gun on that one.

      April 18, 2013

  • heidi

    Hey guys- I think I'm gonna sit this one out too; use my sick days for a better forecast. Good luck though!

    April 18, 2013

  • Wayne

    Guys I'm glad to see your hanging in there. It looks like everyone has had a chance to digest the forecast. If it holds true, a Friday high camp isn't going to work for us (too windy). A camp just below tree line would make better sense. From what I can gather winds are expected to begin tapering off around 5am on Saturday and continue with that pattern into Sunday. The better day to climb is obviously Sunday but we could make an attempt on Saturday if there's enough interest. I guess the question at this point is how many of you would be willing to stay the extra night and climb on Sunday? Depending on what's decided we could use Saturday to move camp onto the ridge and scout the route for Sunday. Give it some thought and let me know.

    1 · April 18, 2013

    • Mike

      I'm interested in going. Think I'll just leave it at that.

      1 · April 18, 2013

    • Marek B.

      I don't know if I can stay for Sunday, but I'm willing to give it a try on Sat. You know, it's a forecast, nothing is set in stone...

      April 18, 2013

  • Brad

    Sorry, guys. I'm saving my vacation day for another climb. Best of luck!

    April 18, 2013

  • Chris

    Is there any way to reschedule this, Wayne? I don't see much of a chance of making the summit. The closer we get to Saturday, the worse the forecast is getting. Tomorrow they expect 105mph winds on the summit plateau and 80mph on Saturday.

    April 18, 2013

  • Florian

    Sorry to drop out at last minute.

    April 18, 2013

    • Wayne

      Don't worry about it Florian. We'll see you guys another time.

      April 18, 2013

  • Chris

    Does anyone know what the conditions for Bunny Flat are as far as the snow pack goes?

    April 17, 2013

  • Marek B.

    I have a 4-season, 2-person Eureka tent, but I'll bring it only if someone is willing to carry half of it. It's bombproof, but also 8 lbs.

    Any need for extra stoves, fuel?

    April 17, 2013

    • Mike

      Is this the same tent you had on Ritter? I can help you carry it assuming it's the best option.

      April 17, 2013

    • Marek B.

      Yes. I'll take it, so that we can share it, unless there's a better (lighter) option!

      April 17, 2013

  • Scott A.

    I have a NF Mountain 35 / 3 person / 4season tent to share.

    April 16, 2013

    • Scott A.

      I will also have a Jetboil and shovel.

      April 17, 2013

  • Florian

    I'll bring my 2 person tent too

    April 17, 2013

  • Rick B.

    I'll bring my REI Cirque 3, but it only really fits 2 and a stove and cookset.

    April 17, 2013

  • Brad

    Would anyone heading to the meetup spot be able to scoop me up at my house, which is just four blocks from 80 in midtown Sac (10th & S)?

    April 17, 2013

    • Rick B.

      I can pick you up Brad. You tell me what time I need to be there.

      April 17, 2013

  • Brad

    I've got a 4-season bivy I'm keen to use and a white gas stove if needed.

    April 17, 2013

  • Dan B

    So sorry to be backing out of this. I've been nursing a cold that I was hoping would go away but I'm still down and coughing harder than ever this am. All the best. Dan

    April 17, 2013

    • Mike

      Sorry to hear that Dan, we'll miss you on this one for sure.

      April 17, 2013

  • Wayne

    Forgot to ask about loaner gear. If anyone needs anything, let me know. I picked up some extra club gear tonight.

    April 16, 2013

    • Mike

      Sounds like an extra shovel or two might be helpful.

      April 17, 2013

  • Wayne

    Guys, it's good to see your already beginning to get the ball rolling on carpooling and gear. There's one other thing I need to talk to you about -- the weather and our plan of attack. I see two options. (1) We have a plan B in mind in case the weather causes us to cancel or reschedule. (2) We establish a basecamp (regardless of forecast) and try to put ourselves in a position to get luck on Saturday. Take a look at the forecast and give it some thought. Terrie and I are in favor of option 2 (were just feelin' lucky).

    April 15, 2013

    • Marek B.

      Forecast for Saturday looks very good right now...

      April 16, 2013

    • Scott A.

      Agree, I voted for option 2.

      April 16, 2013

  • Chris

    I'm not sure what the plan is for tents and other shared gear, but I have a 2 person 4-season tent that I plan on bringing. I will also be bringing my trusty Jetboil that will be available if others need to use it.

    April 15, 2013

    • Mike

      I have a white gas stove I can bring. No tent.

      April 15, 2013

  • Florian

    Hello all. Kelvin and me will drive to SAC from LA on Thursday night. We hope to catch a ride Friday morning if possible :) Do you guys meet at the wallmart parking lot to arrange the carpool? if so what time? Otherwise, we'll meet you at the ranger station at Shasta 8:30am

    April 15, 2013

    • Mike

      Sorry for not being clear Rico, I'm up in Northern California already but I'll need to catch a ride to make it all the way to the mountain. I've looked for a ride so many times at this point that I'd consider renting something just for payback, but obviously would rather put some money in a climbers pocket rather than a car rental biz.

      April 15, 2013

    • Chris

      We usually meet at the meet up location and figure out carpooling from there. I have a Jeep SUV 4x4 with room for myself plus three others

      April 15, 2013

  • Dan B

    Super super excited!

    April 14, 2013

    • Wayne

      Glad to have you on board Dan. You get to be our official photographer now :)

      April 14, 2013

  • dakin c.

    Can't make this after all. Work is being stingy. Have fun!

    April 14, 2013

  • Mike

    What only 6 other mountaineering freaks besides myslef on here right now? 1 spot left!

    March 27, 2013

  • Darren S.

    OK team - we are back on track. Thanks to our EOs and volunteers, this is going to happen! RSVPs open March 27th.

    March 20, 2013

  • Darren S.

    Hey all, I am running into a conflict with this event - I have a commitment on April 19th.
    Either someone can organize it in my stead, I can move it to the weekend before or after...or cancel.
    Any thoughts?

    March 11, 2013

    • David P.

      'Cos I really want to climb the ridge.

      March 14, 2013

    • Marek B.

      Actually rescheduling would work best for me personally... Either weekend, before or after is fine.

      March 18, 2013

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