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Evan Osler [[log in to unmask]] writes:

>I know hiking is discouraged on the GoS trail.. does that mean that if
I
>bring a non-skiing friend along they will need snowshoes? Or is it late
>enough in the season (melted out) and early enough in the morning
(frozen
>after cold saturday night) that it wont be a problem? i.e. is someone
like
>Wesley going to ski down and make my friend cry?

I wouldn't count on it staying hard-frozen for very long- they're
predicting a warming trend the AM, but it's likely to hit mid-high 40s
at 4k' by mid-afternoon. Think "ice sheets on mud" -could be pretty
tough going in places.  In general, when it's this melted out the lower
section of the trail has some ultra-boggy sections and all stream
crossings are undermined &/or caved in, etc. It's not a hiking trail,
and it doesn't drain like one.

That said snowshoes are a definite advantage once you hit snow, and it
messes up the trail less than postholing/crampons. If that's your route,
take snowshoes if you have 'em.

But it's probably as fast or quicker to the top of the middle slide in
the G.O.S. right now to hike up & over via Hillmans, given that the
Tuckerman Ravine trail is a vertitable superhighway. There will surely
be a well established boot ladder in Hillmans too, not necessarly so in
the G.O.S. The only drawbacks to that route are the need to be able to
orienteer your way over/around the Boott Spur in potentially poor
visibility, and you won't be able to assess the hazards on the slide
paths in the G.O.S. before skiing them.  Given the expected weather for
Sunday, neither of these is likely to be a huge problem, but it could be
pretty windy on the ridge too- could slow progress down a bit.

dana

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