Monday, April 12, 2010

Mt. Baldy

After taking 2 months off from climbing due to my bike accident, I returned to mountains to climb Mt. Baldy (Mt. San Antonio), the highest peak in Los Angeles County.  On Saturday my buddy Cary and I   met up at Manker Flats around 7am where we started our climb.  About 2,000 feet and 2 hours of hiking up the dirt trail we reached the Ski Hut, which was where the snow line started.  At the Hut we put on our gators and crampons and started out on the hard packed snow.  We decided to take the most direct route up (the right side of the bowl).  The conditions were perfect for climbing with crampons, the only problem was there was a good chance of rock fall and we didn't bring our helmets.  Cary and I zig zagged back and forth for the next 3 hours taking occasional breaks to catch our breaths and to eat some snacks.  By 12 we reached the summit.  It was super windy and a bit chilly.  We took a half an hour break to take photos and eat our lunch.  On our descent we decided to take a different route down.  This enabled us to glissade down a few parts of the bowl (see the video).  Finally, around 3:30 we returned to the parking lot.  I couldn't have asked for a better day to climb.  The conditions were great and only a handful of people were out.  I just hope the snow will stay around for next weekend when Cary and I plan to climb another peak in the San Gabriels. 

Start: 7am
Summit: 12
Return; 3:30
Elevation start: 6,100 ft
Summit: 10,064 ft

*Thanks to Cary for the photos and the video

View Mt Baldy 4-10-10 in a larger map