January 30, 2009 Winter Back on Vacation Current Conditions

Winter Back on Vacation

Well last week’s storm cycle didn’t last long! Long range forecasts suggest a return to our non-winter winter: warm and dry. Conditionally locally look pretty bleak. I haven’t heard of anyone finding good snow in the SoCal mountains. It may be getting difficult to find snow at all. I was hoping to drive up to (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 2 Comments
January 16, 2009 On the Beach Current Conditions

On the Beach

Well, after last weekend’s adventure, I figured I’d take some time off from skiing the backcountry. Sue at ESAC reports marginal conditions. Apparently the Sierra is on track to set its third driest January on record. Didn’t we just go through all of this a year ago? Once again, we’re stuck with ice and a (more...)...

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January 13, 2009 Mount Harwood — Northeast Ridge Skiing

Mount Harwood — Northeast Ridge

My first official trip report of the winter season is a bittersweet one. In fairness it might be best to call this a climbing trip report, rather than skiing—though we did bring skis. I sometimes think Southern California Ski Mountaineering is a sport unto itself. This adventure did nothing to dissuade me of that notion. (more...)...

Posted in Skiing | 10 Comments
January 9, 2009 The Ski Pole Belay Tips & Technique

The Ski Pole Belay

Over the years I’ve learned a few tricks and tips that can make life a little easier in the backcountry. I’ve been doing some of these so long they seem obvious to me, but they may be a secret to you, so I thought I’d share a few. Here’s one I call the “Ski Pole (more...)...

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January 5, 2009 Skiing Baldy Bowl Skiing

Skiing Baldy Bowl

5:30 a.m. I’m up before the alarm clock and out of the house, hitting I-10 east to Mountain Avenue and Mount Baldy, the nearest of the SoCal summits. The plan is a no-frills hike up the Ski Hut Trail starting from Manker Flat, elevation 6200′, on to the top of Mount San Antonio, elevation 10,000′ (more...)...

Posted in Skiing | 9 Comments
January 2, 2009 Mountain Hardwear Typhoon Gear

Mountain Hardwear Typhoon

The Typhoon Jacket is yet another of those affordable ambiguously technical rain shells that are fast becoming today’s bestsellers. Similar to the North Face Venture Jacket and Marmot’s PreCip Jacket, the Typhoon is the only one of the bunch to offer high-end Gore-Tex PacLite fabric (more…) (more...)...

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About SierraDescents

When there is snow, SierraDescents is Andy Lewicky's California backcountry skiing and mountaineering website. Without snow, sierradescents becomes an ill-tempered hiking and climbing blog.

Pray for snow.