Mt Muir (14000') May '05 - Kaj, Steve and Nick
Nick Fohl

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May 2005

Kaj flew down from Seattle and Steve and I flew down to LAX and then drove up to Lone Pine in order to climb Mt. Langley (14000+  ft.).  This winter the snow pack is running about 200% of normal and the road into the trail head was closed - so we went back into town and got a permit to go in via the Whitney portal to Mt.  Muir - another 14teener.  We were obviously pretty late with that side trip and there was a lot of snow - starting at around 9000' we were kicking steps in the snow.  We had a pretty good time and decided to turn around at 2:00pm while we were in Trail Camp at 12,000' - it was pretty obvious we weren't going to summit and we were going to lose the light.

It was about 96 degrees all day so it was a bit like walking in a snow cone - lots of post holing up to your waist (we didn't know what 200% really was - there were no web indications online at that time that translated into real inches)

A pretty good training hike for Ranier

Here are the photos

June 2005

We did a repeat of the may trip - snow SUPPOSEDLY was melting at the pace of 3" a day - but as you can tell from the photos, that appears to not be the case over 10,000' - the snow field above mirror lake is still extremely intact.  From the looks at trail camp 5 weeks later, there is almost no melt - the snow has compacted into Sierra cement - so less post holing - but I think there is a better than even chance that it will be an alpine ascent to Mt. Muir and Whitney all season long

There are only 15 switch backs clear of snow coming out of Trail Camp and everyone is just going straight up the chute instead - we didn't actually find anyone the whole weekend who managed to summit - nobody was leaving early enough to get to the summit at sunrise

Here are the photos