Kickoff Hike #1 - Raining on Sunday?

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Juan Wachs

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Jan 7, 2022, 4:45:36 PMJan 7
to PAT...@googlegroups.com
Hi folks,
It seems that this Sunday will be raining. Snow would be just fine. But rain sounds like a bad thing. Can you let me know if this hike is still taking place?
Thanks!
Juan

On Fri, Jan 7, 2022 at 4:09 PM <PAT...@googlegroups.com> wrote:
Matt Schwartz <schwa...@gmail.com>: Jan 07 01:06PM -0800

Yea- Not sure who else RSVPd, but I doubt my car can make it to old rag,
especially if the roads are bad. Would be grateful for a carpool..
 
Caroline Mosher <caod...@gmail.com>: Jan 07 03:25PM -0500

Hi all,
 
Michael Doyle has asked me to pass along this message. Please reach out to
him if you’re interested. I hope you are all enjoying the snow day.
 
“Should have sent this earlier in the week, given that the dump of snow
occurred on Monday, long enough for the roads to have been (hopefully)
cleared but thought I'd send a note out anyway. Have to grab this shot
at fun local alpinism, given these occurrences have been few and far
between in the past decade.
 
I am planning to head up to the Blue Ridge in the natl park for some
alpine fun tomorrow (Sat, 1/8) and would like to share the adventure
with another person (or three, for 2 rope teams). Since Skyline Drive is
closed (I just listened to the updated message on the park phone
service), this would entail a 3 mile hike up from the White Oak Canyon
TH up the Cedar Run Trail to Skyline and then on further a short
distance to some classic alpine terrain - snow, rock, frozen stuff,
should be some ice. The area faces north, at the highest elevations in
the park, with the temperatures in the teens-20's for tomorrow (and
wind) - typical alpine day....
 
I'm not planning on any highly technical stuff, bringing along just a
couple of alpine ice tools (NOT long-shafted mountaineering axes) and
crampons. If I can find a partner with this note, I'll bring along
harness, screws, runners, etc etc (we can chat about it).
 
Given the short amount of daylight available at this part of the season,
I plan the start the hike earlyish, between 6 and 6:30. Given that
people live along Weakley Hollow Rd above the White Oak Canyon Trailhead
parking, I would expect the road to be clear. Might need chains for the
last 20m of driving into the parking spot next to the road...
 
If interested, please do drop me a note, or call at 443-430-5163. I live
in Charlottesville so, unfortunately, can't carpool with folks coming
from the NoVa/DC area...
 
Cheers,
Michael Doyle”
Vincent Penoso <vdotm...@gmail.com>: Jan 07 02:13PM -0500

Bringing my wife to Ouray and want her to be an ice climber after we return.
 
Looking for a belay jacket for her.
 
Vincent
Chinquapin Honey LLC
2021 Honey available
Raw and Local Goodness from Alexandria, Virginia
Juan Wachs <juan....@gmail.com>: Jan 07 09:56AM -0500

Hi there,
I signed up to come with my son (and possibly my daughter) this Sunday for
the Kickoff Hike #1. If there is a phone number to be in touch, it will be
great.
Mine is: 765-337-8526.
We plan to be there. Let me know if there is any special info that we need
to know in advance, in addition to what is in the website.
Thanks!
Juan
 
 
Matthew Kilcullen <matthewk...@gmail.com>: Jan 07 11:10AM -0500

Hi Juan,
 
I've added Dak, the event leader. They'll be able to assist you.
 
Climb on!
Matt Kilcullen
 
 
 
<oldm...@gmail.com>: Jan 06 09:38PM -0500

Love this! I didn’t know people got out of their wetsuit to pee… :)
 

 
From: pat...@googlegroups.com <pat...@googlegroups.com> On Behalf Of Robert Graver
Sent: Thursday, January 6, 2022 3:58 PM
To: Caroline Mosher <caod...@gmail.com>
Cc: PATCMS <pat...@googlegroups.com>; R. Neil Arsenault <arse...@email.com>
Subject: Re: [PATC-MS] Seneca Rocks History - A New Year's Resolution
 

 
Nice!
 
Thanks Neil.
 

 
On Thu, Jan 6, 2022 at 13:55 Caroline Mosher <caod...@gmail.com <mailto:caod...@gmail.com> > wrote:
 
Great story. But where's the icicle helmet photo??
 

 
On Thu, Jan 6, 2022 at 1:48 PM R. Neil Arsenault <arse...@email.com <mailto:arse...@email.com> > wrote:
 

 
About a month ago there were several posts about Alan Talbert, a long time member of the Mountaineering Section.
 
Along about this time of year I usually remember Alan.
 

 
Here's a little bit of Seneca history I'm sure absolutely nobody still around knows about.
 

 
Alan was a good friend, even though we never climbed anything together.
 
Alan was about 20 years older than me, part of the John Christian, Arnold Wexler generation of climbers First ascent of Green Wall with John Christian.
 
While Alan and I never climbed together, we did a fair amount of whitewater kayaking. At least untill I quit the Kamikaze Kayak Klub after I ripped my left arm 4" out of it socket in a big hydrolic.
 

 
First time I met Alan a group of us were starting down the North Fork into Hopeville Canyon. Hopeville is one of the more serious "classic" whitewater runs around Seneca.
 
Not too many people even know its there because the North Fork swings away from the highway for a few miles as it starts its drop into the cliff lined canyon.
 
So out on the river, getting ready to run the "harder than most / more isolated than most" Hopeville Canyon solo, was this "old guy". Since I was in my late 20' s that "old guy" was not quite 50. Alan Talbert.
 

 
When we introduced ourselves and invited him to join our group. I did an "Alan Talbert ? THE Alan Talbert ? Green Wall Alan Talbert ?"
 
The guys in the other kayaks had no idea what we were talking about. "I think they must both be some of those crazy rock climbers."
 

 
So one winter, with a bunch of us crowded into a van, driving the shuttle back to the put-in with the van's heater on max, after a couple of hours on the river, Alan shared his annual New Year's Resolution.
 

 
For those of you who may not be familiar with the questionable "joys" of West Virginia whitewater, most of the whitewater streams are runable from late February through early April.
 
That means cold.
 
I have an old picture taken at the Seneca Rocks whitewater race where I have a line of short icicles hanging from the front rim of my helmet. As well as from my mustache.
 
Cold weather and most especially cold water. Your dead in 10 minutes or maybe sooner cold water. That means full wet suits..
 

 
If your out on the river and nature calls, that means that first you find a place where you can pull over and get out of your boat.
 
While everyone else on the trip waits for you, you pop your spray skirt, climb up the river bank, go a respectful distance into the woods,
 
manage to get out of your life jacket and wet suit (and getting into or out of a wetsuit can take a bit of effort) take care of things, maybe in the wind and the snow,
 
get back into your now frigid wetsuit, and now thoroughly chilled, head back to your boat, only to be greeted by all those folks on the river who have been waiting for you all this time in their boats.
 

 
This is in general not a pleasant activity and does not make you friends.
 

 
So the alternative..... Alan Talbert's New Year's Resolution that he shared with everyone in that van was "not to go to the bathroom in his wetsuit."
 
And that he made the same resolution every New Year's because he never kept his resolution.
 
That confession got a bit of attention right at that moment. And everybody moved away from Alan toward the other side of the van.
 

 
Sometime later I shared this story with a few of my climbing buddies.
 

 
And so one day after putting up a new route on the East side of the South Peak, I was told that they had named it Talbert Pickelfish.
 
In honor of Alan Talbert and his annually reoccurring New Years Resolution.
 

 
The names of many climbs at Seneca have a story behind them. Many of those stores are now forgotten or almost forgotten.
 
Maybe this one will get remembered.
 

 
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Robert (Bobby) Graver,
 
DIRECTOR,
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O: (855) 822-5462
C: (703) 622-0945
 

 
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Elliott Becker <elliot...@gmail.com>: Jan 06 10:46PM -0500

Once I tried to climb Conn's East to Soler to skip the runout start of
Soler. Well, screwed up the route-finding pretty badly and did the run-out
first pitch of Soler (I went from being I was scared I was going to fall
out to scared I was stuck in the OW), into Talber Picklefish. Well,
Picklefish doesn't get a lot of traffic, and it's pretty dirty, and I was
throwing a lot of gear in and I looked up and saw there was still a ways to
go, so I escaped left along a ledge to the anchors for Hidden Assets and
came down that way. John Pruett had to climb up after me to clean up after
all this. As Neil knows, the FA of Picklefish was my good friend's uncle,
Dennis (at least according to the latest guide).
 
John Pruett <jpr...@gmail.com>: Jan 06 10:46PM -0800

Elliott, I would add that you did quite a fine job on the climb given the
circumstances. It was dirty for sure. And I was relatively new to trad so
nearly peed my wetsuit on that one.
 
On Thu, Jan 6, 2022 at 7:47 PM Elliott Becker <elliot...@gmail.com>
wrote:
 
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D. Hardwick

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Jan 7, 2022, 6:30:49 PMJan 7
to Juan Wachs, PATCMS
HI everyone -

I've had a number of questions (both here and directly) about the Sunday Hike #1 at Old Rag given the weather forecast.

The hike is ON (rain or shine - but likely rain, possibly early freezing rain).

This is a great opportunity to dial-in your cold/rain gear in less than ideal weather conditions, so we'll take full advantage of what Mother Nature has to throw at us. We'll also use it to discuss the pace needed to move through the mountains while keeping your heart rate in check, a fundamental element of successful alpinism.

Couple of strongly suggested items for those that are joining:

1. Baselayers. Think about base layers (if you'd need them). The temperatures range from 20s-40s, but in wet conditions. For me, I'm unlikely to do a base layer since we'll be moving over a couple thousand feet of elevation.
2. Hard shells, for both upper and lower body. Upper body for sure. If you have pit vents in your upper body hard shells, even better. You'll want to dump heat as we move.
3. Gaiters. To keep your legs dry/warm.
4. Gloves. If you have synthetics that are water resistant, even better.
5. Trekking poles. Never leave home without them (at least I don't).
6. Hat. Something that's synthetic/wicks moisture.
7. Extra layers. You'll want extra layers to start to dial-in your layering system (upper body, lower body, socks). Given the rain, strongly recommend against anything down and stick to synthetics. At minimum, bring an extra jacket to put on when we stop for a break. Remember - no cotton (it absorbs water and doesn't wick worth a d**m). Wool or synthetics.
7. Microspikes/yaktrax. There may be residual snow/ice, so proper gear on your boots is critical. Mountaineering crampons are not needed.
8. Food/water. Recommend 2L of water and lunch/trail snacks. We'll stop about every hour for a few minutes, but will keep going to stay on time.

Our goal will be to move about 1,000 vertical feet every hour (or 250ft every 15 minutes). As this is a training hike, we'll talk about efficient movement in the mountains in less than ideal conditions - and actually practice in real time. :)

On carpools, I can't personally help with that on Sunday (sorry about that). If folks need a carpool partner, I'd keep an eye out on the listserve to see if folks are available.

ANY questions? Hit me at 571-215-3008 (or at this email).

Thanks!
-Dak Hardwick

Chris Beebe

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Jan 8, 2022, 8:09:00 PMJan 8
to D. Hardwick, PATCMS
Hey all,

One of the best outcomes of this program is to help participants form good judgement. Tomorrow's Old Rag hike will be 40 and rainy starting just after we get there. The area is also under a winter storm warning tomorrow morning.

I will be going tomorrow. After looking at the weather, I've determined the roads are in good enough shape to drive there and return.  Since it will be cold and wet, I'm confident that I have the right gear to stay warm and the ability to turn around if I can't. Furthermore, Old Rag requires scrambling, which may be precarious with residual snow and ice in addition to potentially rain-slicked rock. I expect to turn around at the start of the rock scramble, but will proceed until forced to stop and turn around. I've prepared myself to turn around right below the end of the scramble if needs be. Also, I will bring a rope and minimal gear to protect others if necessary.  This is a last resort, not a top rope. I won't try to explain my fall thought process, but I'm I'll simplify it to say I'm not doing anything insecure with a bad fall potential. That looks different for everyone.

Please make an informed decision.  Please think about what you are and are not willing to do. Please give yourself permission to succeed within a margin of safety.

Stay safe,
Chris

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