Report from June 29, 2023
Brought to you by Mono County Tourism
11,000′ McGee Creek Peak, CA’s “McGee Creek Chutes” yesterday were surprisingly stupendous!
We had low expectations, especially after how abhorrent the lower section looked…
Regardless, we donned shorts and t-shirts and clambered on up there.
The climb went quickly with Tall Carl kicking in the booter. 2,700-vertical-feet and 1.3-miles flashed by in less than 2-hours.
The top section of the chute was steep, tight, and smooth.
We had to switch chutes part way down and the upper portion of chute #2 (slide 2) skied marvelously as well.
The middle of chute 2 put up a fight…
Bumpy, dirty, and firm like an unripe passion fruit.
Once on the apron, things smoothed out and creamed corn was delivered on a platter.
The approach to this line only takes 10-minutes and the creek is still plugged full of snow due to this winter’s ferocious avalanche cycle.
We’ve now done 19 “new-to-us” ski mountaineering lines in the Eastern Sierra since May 10 and we’ve only got 1 left to do to complete our 2023 Eastern Sierra Project!
11,00′ McGee Creek Peak, CA –
“McGee Creek Chutes”
- Summit (actually a ridgeline): 10,600′
- Car: 7,900
- Vertical From Car: 2,700′ (some up and down on road)
- Vertical skied: 2,700′
- Max Pitch: 40+º
- Avg Pitch: 35º
- Aspect: North
- Distance: 2.6-miles round trip
- Time From Car to Top: 2 hours
- Car to Car Time: 3 hours & 30 minutes
- Recommended Equipment: Crampons, Ice Axe x 2, Skins, Ski Crampons
It’s getting harder and harder to convince people to join me on these ski mountaineering adventures…
Yesterday, I tricked 3 friends into giving the “McGee Creek Chutes” a try with exactly no confidence that it would be any good.
I’d found a photo from an Eastern Sierra Facebook group that at least showed that the chute went.
We started hiking at about 8:40am from the McGee Creek Trailhead.
In only about 10-minutes, we were on snow and booting up.
The chute is really 2 chutes right now.
An upper and a lower.
The lower chute is pretty bumpy and funky.
The upper chute is pretty clean and attractive.
From the base of the chute, it only took us 1 hour and 40 minutes to boot up the thing.
Tall Carl put in the booter and it went quickly on the firm but supple snow.
We chilled on top for 30 minutes or so giving it time to soften.
We could have even waited a bit longer.
We dropped into a tight, steep, smooth chute with hellacious views.
That upper section skied great.
We then unclicked and walked over about 15′ of rock to chute 2.
We skied the upper skinny portion of the chute just for fun then dropped into chute 2 proper.
Its upper section skied pretty well.
The middle section was firm, bumpy, and rough.
My cardiovascular system was tested…
The apron was dreamy.
Creamed corn on a platter.
We switched back to our shoes and documented 15 different species of wildflowers on the quick walk home.
At the car, the team was stoked.
I was relieved that my errant mission wasn’t a failure.
There was even talk of skiing this one again…
SPRING 2023 REPORTS
- 6/29/23: Trip Report: 11,744′ Independence Peak, CA – “Independence Couloir”
- 6/25/23: Trip Report: University Peak, CA – “Northeast Couloir”
- 6/22/23: Trip Report: 13,632′ University Peak, CA – “North Face”
- 6/20/23: Trip Report: 13,494′ Mt. Thompson, CA – “Trident Couloirs”
- 6/15/23: Trip Report: 12,871′ Mount Johnson, CA – “North Couloir”
- 6/9/23: Trip Report: 13,366′ Point Powell, CA – “Point Powell Couloir”
- 6/8/23: Trip Report: 12,219′ Hurd Peak, CA – “North Face”
- 6/4/23: Trip Report: The Incredible Hulk, CA – “Hulk Left Couloir”
- 6/2/23: Trip Report: 13,187′ Basin Mountain – “Basin Couloir Alternate”
- 5/31/23: Trip Report: 12,808′ Four Gables, CA – “Tungstar Bowls”
- 5/27/23: Trip Report: 11,160′ Mt. Scowden – Lundy Canyon – “North Face Chute”
- 5/24/23: Sierra Nevada, CA Report: Skiing Through A Lava Tube Cave
- 5/23/23: Trip Report: 13,118′ Mt. Emerson – The 45º Steep “North Couloir”
- 5/20/23: Trip Report: 12,200′ Mt. Esha, CA – “2nd Chute”
- 5/18/23: Trip Report: McGee Creek Peak, CA – 2,800-Vertical-Foot “Wineglass Couloir”
- 5/16/23:Trip Report: 10,908′ Carson Peak, CA – 45º Steep “Pete’s Dream”
- 5/5/15/23: Trip Report: 11,812′ Mt. Laurel, CA – 3,500-Vertical-Foot “Pinner Couloir”
- 5/10/23: Trip Report: 13,005′ Mt. Morgan, CA – Nevahbe Ridge Gullies
PHOTOS IN CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER