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Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?

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Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 12:37AM
Hi all,

I've read the two threads on Mt Conness in this forum and am pretty clear about routes you can take etc. I'm planning a 2-3 day backpacking trip to Young Lakes and Mt. Conness (and whatever peaks we then still want to do) However I'm not sure about the last ascent to Mt Conness in terms of exposure and vertigo, e.g. when I see this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DSo5vp271Xo

I've done Clouds Rest after watching a similarly scary video and it turned out to be more than easy, after doing the ridge I was still waiting for the hard part and couldnt believe we were already there - you had enough rocks to lean on to your right if you wanted to - is this ascent comparable and looks scarier on video, or is it actually much scarier (cause of exposure) than Clouds Rest? I actually do have vertigo when there are sharp drop-offs on both sides and I have nothing to lean on to (rock on any side) and the "trail" is like 3 foot wide... Since I'm kind of organizing the trip, I would like to know a little in advance whether I'll be totally panicked or it's actually ok and safe winking smiley

Thanks for all your thoughts!
eg
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 02:58AM
conness looks very, very interesting. it must go on my to-do list. but judging by the video it does look a lot more exposed than CR. if, having watched the video you still feel drawn to attempt it, then do. the only thing I would advise, and if you are in the mountains anyway you probably already do, is wear sunglasses, and look ahead, rather than down, as far as is practical. and have fun.thumbs up
avatar Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 06:28AM
My best guess is that you will be fine... but it should not matter...
You should go and see for yourself. Even if you decide to not do the
final push... there is loads of stuff to explore on the plateau....
you can walk all around the edge from the hike up... and all around and
back down-ish... with astounding views all up and down dat.
It will not be a loss if the summit is not reached. Not a big deal imo.

Have fun



Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 08:13AM
I agree with Chick-on, although it has been 40 years now since I was at the top of Conness...and my vision of what is scary may have changed. I don't remember it being more threatening that Cloud's Rest...

But the hike up there is still well worth the effort. Don't know if the bergschrund is still visible the ways it was in the late 70's, but that's something I will always remember!



Balzaccom

follow our adventures, read our blog, or just to come hang out at our website: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/
avatar Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 08:52AM
I think the biggest difference between the two is that the Conness catwalk is more ...scrambly? You're ascending more vertical in the distance than you are on Clouds Rest, which is essentially a flat walk on the narrowest part. It's probably wider than Clouds Rest though. Just keep your eyes on the rock in front of you and under your feet, and it should be okay. Then again, last time I did clouds rest I skipped along the ridge. smiling smiley Exposure sensitivity is such a personal thing, so only you will know when you get there. And I agree - it's such a neat area that it would still be worth the climb even if you don't get to the summit.
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 09:42AM
That video makes it look a lot scarier than it actually is.
avatar Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 10:50AM
You can do it.
Reminds me of doing Conness about 30 years ago with the family. My baby sister, probably about 18 at the time, got to the worst part and couldn't get herself to go across the short section (a step or two) with big drop-offs on both sides. After much supportive encouragement (read peer pressure) she took the 2 steps and made it across. And being so completely freaked out about it she immediately jumped back across to where she started.
She did finally cross again and made it to the summit. We still laugh about that little episode.
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 04:02PM
It felt slightly more exposed to me than Clouds Rest, but it's not nearly as bad as it looks in the video. The wifey stayed back (she's quite acrophobic), but I didn't think twice about it. Agree with others that the hike up is worth it regardless of whether or not everyone makes it up the summit block. One heads up though, the section where the use trail leaves the marshy area to the SE of Conness is quite steep, requiring use of hands at points. Might be worth being mentally prepared for some scrambling...nothing quite like that on the way up Clouds Rest, but it's also not too difficult.





After making the summit, we had a pleasant picnic with this fella. Say hello for me if you see him.







Edited 5 time(s). Last edit at 08/27/2014 04:27PM by redpakotasea.
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 07:41PM
What I remember from my hike up Conness was that the rock had a rough texture, not like the smooth (slick) granite of Half Dome. The approach shoes with grippy soles I had purchased just for that hike really worked well -- the shoes felt "glued" to the rock as claimed in one of the reviews. I felt the exposure right from the start. I folded up my hiking poles and stuck them along with my camera in my backpack because for me the hike (scramble) required my full attention.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 08/27/2014 07:57PM by KenS.
avatar Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 08:16PM
So, the Clouds Rest videos are scarier than the actual hike up there? My wife is concerned about being able to do the summit after watching the vids she has seen.
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 10:29PM
Yes, nothing like on the video winking smiley I was reading reviews and getting scared but really, literally after I was up there I was asking people where the scary ridge was, it's totally safe and not exposed. Your wife should be fine! You always have one side to lean onto if you don't choose to walk on top of everything (and even then its fine). We actually hiked through this ridge three times, twice in the dark (after sunset and before sunrise) and I was initially worried about going just once winking smiley
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 10:32PM
Thanks guys for all your feedback, that sounds encouraging and I'm looking even more forward to the trip. I was planning to go the old Mt. Conness trail and do expect scrambling - I have bouldered a bit outdoors and love scrambling (have done little Tuolumne Peak as my first off-trail, which was no problem at all, and that motivated me to do more smiling smiley) so that should not be much of an issue given there are no incredible drop-offs, but I'll just go and see, if I feel comfortable I'll go smiling smiley Thanks again!
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 11:09PM
You can tell from my goofy video that Clouds Rest looks scarier than it is.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xaSZGnFKO6w







Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/27/2014 11:15PM by chicagocwright.
avatar Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 28, 2014 06:53AM
Old Dood Exposed



(1 step back n u dead old dood)



Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
September 01, 2014 01:19AM
That section is rough. Add a chain to the wall! tongue sticking out smiley



Another photo of that big "step" and that narrow 1-foot section.
avatar Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
September 02, 2014 09:30AM
I went past that section Sunday (trip pics later), but didn't feel comfortable with the next section where it looked like 'climbing over the top' was the only feasible way.

I wonder if this used to be a constructed trail, though. The 'steps' in your picture looked like they were constructed, and they're adjacent to rock where one can easily hold on, and in the next exposed section where I stopped I saw similar sized 'blocks' about 30 feet down. Is it possible those used to be part of a constructed route that fell away?
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
September 04, 2014 10:34AM
Quote
ttilley
I wonder if this used to be a constructed trail, though. The 'steps' in your picture looked like they were constructed, and they're adjacent to rock where one can easily hold on, and in the next exposed section where I stopped I saw similar sized 'blocks' about 30 feet down. Is it possible those used to be part of a constructed route that fell away?

When JKW and I did Conness, I remember thinking that the route to the summit looked constructed in places--perhaps by the survey team? And, early maps do suggest a real trail from the Young Lakes area to the summit once existed.
avatar Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 28, 2014 09:10PM
My wife says thanks. We will be there in a week.
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 28, 2014 10:23PM
I def lost my nerve on Conness. Need a do-over someday, haha.

Those who have done Lyell/Maclure: how do these compare? From what I hear, Maclure is the tougher. So maybe Conness vs. Lyell.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/28/2014 10:30PM by Ohnivy-Drak.
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 29, 2014 10:44AM
Lyell is much harder. Legit class 3 to get to the summit. Conness I would give a low class 2 rating. I've only looked up at Maclure from the saddle, but, looks about the same difficulty as Lyell.

Two pics from Lyell...



Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 29, 2014 05:05PM
Thx for the Lyell pics.

Here's a Lyell trip report with photos, from one of my fav resources:
http://www.scaruffi.com/monument/hikes/lyell.html
http://www.scaruffi.com/monument/hikes/lyell.html

From conversations with a few people, they consider Lyell 2-3, while Maclure is 3-4.

Going up Conness Glacier was challenging. I guess for both glaciers, you might be able to get up w/o crampons under the right conditions. Some have done it, I wouldn't think of it.
avatar Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
September 01, 2014 09:32AM
Quote
Ohnivy-Drak
From conversations with a few people, they consider Lyell 2-3, while Maclure is 3-4.

Done both in same trip later in year when barely touched snow (came via Hellhole Pass / Mac Lake).
Lyell was much more difficult than Maclure imo. I'd say Lyell was definite class 3 in one spot.
Maclure there has to be about 90 different ways up... and it was all fairly simple from my recollection.
I'd say easy class 3 at best. Actually thought it was a lot more enjoyable than Lyell.



Chick-on is looking at you!
avatar Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
September 01, 2014 09:53AM
Dragon boy, if you care...
Maclure

And all his photos calling the lakes McClure. None of those are
named or drain from Maclure Glacier / Maclure Creek / Maclure Lake.
You cannot see the lower "Maclure" lakes from Mt. Maclure.

Some of mine are here if you desire:
https://picasaweb.google.com/yosemite.chick.on/Lyell

Have fun n Be Safe



Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
August 27, 2014 09:55PM
The videos are scarier than the real thing. My wife does not like exposure and had no trouble at all with Clouds Rest



Balzaccom

follow our adventures, read our blog, or just to come hang out at our website: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
September 01, 2014 01:16AM
Conness from Young Lakes

Info belongs to Piero Scaruffi.
Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
September 02, 2014 10:33PM
avatar Re: Exposure - Mt Conness south ascent vs. Clouds Rest?
September 05, 2014 08:44PM
Quote
KenS

http://books.google.com/books?id=YL4RAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA115&dq=conness+finley#v=onepage&q=conness%20finley&f=false


That's a fascinating read (the Overland Magazine article). Like when he mentions the sheep men were holding back their herds where Tioga Road crossed Yosemite Creek because the bridge was washed out. After his crew rebuilt the bridge in a day and a half, 20,000 head of sheep crossed over the new bridge within a few days! No wonder John Muir referred to sheep as "hoofed locusts."
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