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Adk_dib
03-08-2005, 10:49 AM
doing blue this weekend and adams next. do i need crampons for these or will my snowshoes do? I know blue has a lot of rockface and i wonder if it will be iced over. also adams was pretty steep towards the top so i wonder if my snowshoes will be cumbersome. also i want to do cascade the week after that and do i need crampons there? should i pack them just in case?

Tom Rankin
03-09-2005, 11:02 AM
doing blue this weekend and adams next. do i need crampons for these or will my snowshoes do? I know blue has a lot of rockface and i wonder if it will be iced over. also adams was pretty steep towards the top so i wonder if my snowshoes will be cumbersome. also i want to do cascade the week after that and do i need crampons there? should i pack them just in case?

Without having ever been to blue or adams, I would still say yes!

And for Cascade, YES!!!

I always bring them in my pack for late fall thru early spring.

ALGonquin Bob
03-10-2005, 09:51 AM
Blue Mountain (by Blue Mtn. Lake) does not require crampons for any part of it; snowshoes will do fine all the way up.

I hiked Cascade in mid-December, and needed crampons to get myself up onto the summit dome. Snowshoes work fine until you emerge from the trees as you approach the final section.

Let us know how it was on Adams. I haven't been up there yet, although I passed by on my way to Allen. As you leave the road to begin the climb, you'll pass the remains of the fire tower observer's cabin. It's quite a mess, but I recently read that those building may be preserved (and hopefully restored).

Pete Hogan
03-10-2005, 01:26 PM
Since snow/ice conditions change daily, crampons would probably be a good idea regardless of where you go. If your snowshoe crampons are fairly aggressive, you should be able to handle most trail situations. However, there may be some sections (steep or icy or both) that may be less hazardous as a result of switching to 10-point crampons. Having them with you at all times at least gives you that option.

We hiked Adams last July in prep for a Presidential Traverse and were impressed with the steepness of the upper reaches. I have included an excerpt from my journal to emphasize this point.

"The first section of the Mt. Adams Trail is a gradual and pleasant walk on a very soft trail. About a mile and a half into the hike, the trail reaches a rocky section and begins a more serious ascent on steeper grades. There are several switchbacks and brief plateaus that help lessen the severity of the ascent. At approximately 1.9 miles from the trailhead parking, there is a long side hill traverse that swings left following the narrow rocky section and ends in an area of significant blow down that has been cut and cleared. This marks the beginning of the last half-mile of steep hiking before the summit is reached. We were impressed with the pitch of the upper slopes. The horizon was low ahead of us and also on both sides emphasizing the sharp angle of ascent and deceiving us to think that the summit was imminent. It was, but not without some additional work."

"This would be an outstanding fall hike or winter snowshoe trip. We were both impressed with the physical challenge of this route as well as the peace and solitude of this remote area. The tower is necessary for the views, but the mountain can stand on its own for an enjoyable and challenging day hike."

If you are prepared for the unexpected, you won't have to alter plans or compromise personal safety. The extra weight of crampons is a small "price" to pay for getting there (and back) safely.

kdk1610
03-11-2005, 05:02 AM
i've climbed blue 6 times this winter. lake effect in the last couple of days has probably covered frozen granular snow from the thaw we got three days ago. i would not be bringing crampons to blue this weekend if my snowshoes had serrated teeth. however, there will be times that instep crampons might be needed for blue; i needed them for an icy hike in late dec..

cascade will have a much higher probability of needing crampons because the summit lacks the trees to hold the snow. so the wind scours off the snow down to bare ice/rock.

i bought extra instep crampons at gander mountain in new hartford in january.

have fun,

dave

starbaby
03-11-2005, 07:20 PM
I have hiked adams twice and have found crampons to be a nearly essential item. You could probabaly make it with snowshoes, but there is a lengthy section in a narrow ravine, which has a high potential for ice. It is simply so much more efficient to do this in crampons rather than fight it with a snowshow.

That's my opinion.

SB

mavs00
03-11-2005, 10:28 PM
We did Adams in late November (during that real icy transition period) and we found crampons pretty helpful. One in our group didn't have them, and they struggled. Can't hurt to bring them. It's not reall steep but there are a few sections of slab rock that hold ice good.

Ditto on Cascade, however the real rocky portion on top may not hold the ice as well the 'quiet' non-windblown spots on Adams,I'd still bring them. They don't add much and it would suck to get most of the way there, and have to turn around cuz you didn't bring em.