Watsons Crags

NotCody

Early Days
Apr 15, 2021
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Just wondering whether anyone could give me any beta for Watson’s crags ? I have the mountain sports collective map , but the presence of so many cliffs doesn’t fill me with confidence. I know the walk out will be killer.
Any tricky aspect or little tricks to be mindful of , I know I’ll get sluff if snow is soft etc.

Watson’s and the sentinel (before Watson’s on another trip) will be good after a long warm up I think. I was planning on doing Guthega to Watson’s return in a day , but that is a long day ....

(Admin Note: Title expanded for SEO)
 
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Bloke

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Oct 21, 2011
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Work up to crags. Start with watsons creek (the otherside of the crags) and also runs into siren song. Then back side of carruthers and sentinel (these make a good 1- 2 combo). After that you’ll have a better idea of the conditions and set-up out there and better placed to assess if crags are doable. Ice is definitely your main concern.
 

buckwheat

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Jun 6, 2000
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You can def skin up from the north side, but south side of the crags proper is def a bootpack at minimum. I've never needed crampons, but taking them as a backup is def advisable. We pack techpons these days due to small size.Having said that you'd never drop in in the first place if the conditions were icy! And if you're skiing in good weather, cliffs are very easily avoided.
 
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NotCody

Early Days
Apr 15, 2021
54
76
18
Work up to crags. Start with watsons creek (the otherside of the crags) and also runs into siren song. Then back side of carruthers and sentinel (these make a good 1- 2 combo). After that you’ll have a better idea of the conditions and set-up out there and better placed to assess if crags are doable. Ice is definitely your main concern.
Thanks for this. I would 'def' work up to Watsons :)
 
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NotCody

Early Days
Apr 15, 2021
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You can def skin up from the north side, but south side of the crags proper is def a bootpack at minimum. I've never needed crampons, but taking them as a backup is def advisable. We pack techpons these days due to small size.Having said that you'd never drop in in the first place if the conditions were icy! And if you're skiing in good weather, cliffs are very easily avoided.
Thanks for the knowledgable advice I pretty much always carry an axe crampons and a whippet (non dog variety). Spring corn missions probably safer - I haven't got my map with me, but whats a good vantage point to scope out runs ? Is it easy to enter the wrong line ...? And what is the easiest line , 'main chute' I've heard ?

Sorry heaps of questions....
 
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rowdyflat

A Local
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Jun 21, 2003
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Thanks for the knowledgable advice I pretty much always carry an axe crampons and a whippet (non dog variety). Spring corn missions probably safer - I haven't got my map with me, but whats a good vantage point to scope out runs ? Is it easy to enter the wrong line ...? And what is the easiest line , 'main chute' I've heard ?

Sorry heaps of questions....
Yes it is easy to enter the wrong line as with anything steep you cant always see far ahead , you should check it out from in front first for obvious markers and pitfalls and timing is critical even in spring for good snow conditions.
The steeper something is , the quicker it goes from icey to good to sloppy due to the sun's angle.
 

Snow Blowey

Old n' Crusty
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Jan 7, 2004
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Thanks for the knowledgable advice I pretty much always carry an axe crampons and a whippet (non dog variety). Spring corn missions probably safer - I haven't got my map with me, but whats a good vantage point to scope out runs ? Is it easy to enter the wrong line ...? And what is the easiest line , 'main chute' I've heard ?

Sorry heaps of questions....


Best vantage point is from Alice Rawson or further north. But not very convenient to scope it out from there before you ski it because it will take a few hours to get over there.

Sentinel and the Awesome Spur offer next best scoping.
 

NotCody

Early Days
Apr 15, 2021
54
76
18
Best vantage point is from Alice Rawson or further north. But not very convenient to scope it out from there before you ski it because it will take a few hours to get over there.

Sentinel and the Awesome Spur offer next best scoping.
Thanks Mate - might go in a week and walk out onto the Sentinel and try and get some sense of Watsons and the Sentinel at the same time.

This was a good resource....
https://huckanddyno.wordpress.com/2013/05/14/the-gnarliest-runs-in-oz-part-1-nsw/

Also here's some seriously scary viewing ! Show's you how in shade the main chute is and it only gets steeper and more committing with the crux. I would have ditched the ski pole (who cares when its your life) and put that axe in my hand - touch and go ! My very smart friend said when south face of feathertop is a go (far more open face) it needs 10c at Hotham, I feel like Watsons is similar !



 

Tanuki

Part of the Furniture
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Sep 29, 2010
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Thanks Mate - might go in a week and walk out onto the Sentinel and try and get some sense of Watsons and the Sentinel at the same time.

This was a good resource....
https://huckanddyno.wordpress.com/2013/05/14/the-gnarliest-runs-in-oz-part-1-nsw/

Also here's some seriously scary viewing ! Show's you how in shade the main chute is and it only gets steeper and more committing with the crux. I would have ditched the ski pole (who cares when its your life) and put that axe in my hand - touch and go ! My very smart friend said when south face of feathertop is a go (far more open face) it needs 10c at Hotham, I feel like Watsons is similar !



Sketchy AF, although he negotiated it well.
 
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NotCody

Early Days
Apr 15, 2021
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18
Have done it twice, its not as bad as it looks once you're in- but you do need to pick the right conditions. Would never do it in bullet proof conditions.

I'm getting sept, super hot at Thredbo anything else to pray for ?
 

lightfoot

Hard Yards
Jun 27, 2012
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[/QUOTE]


Hats off for getting down in one piece. Blows me away having an axe out without gloves. Particularly after the 1st few turns clearly explained what was on the menu.
 
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DPS Driver

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Jul 18, 2014
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Hats off for getting down in one piece. Blows me away having an axe out without gloves. Particularly after the 1st few turns clearly explained what was on the menu.[/QUOTE]
That was my thought as well. Crazy not having gloves on there, particularly if you were going to try and self arrest. Not that it looked like a self arrest would have worked too well but even trying without gloves would have been a blood-bath.
 
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