Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

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Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby Patrick » Mon Aug 31, 2009 6:08 am

Tony Crocker wrote:Nothing I've read about Los Penitentes suggests that it's a multiday destination. One website commented on "good skiing, especially for beginners and intermediates."


Patrick is correct again. :mrgreen: When are you going to learn to trust my info over a website. :lol: :lol: :lol:

"good skiing, especially for beginners and intermediates." :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: I would love to hit this place in winter conditions. Lift access terrain is amazing. This place in-bound terrain is much greater than VN or EC (can't really judge LaParva as I didn't see it long enough).

Okay, this place might not be for everyone. Basically it has 2 useful lifts terrain access wise. One at the lower half of the mountain, the other at the second upper mountain (425m approx). The lift goes along a ridge line, some average to good steeps on each side of that ridge + there is the traversing terrain. People with AT setup can tour for hours. On this point, meet up with an American couple that toured on the 29th. Mentioned that this place was pointed out to them by French skiers they meet at Los Molles (Leñas). Happy they came here. Mentioned that the snow conditions where much better - toured due to Marte.

"good skiing, especially for beginners and intermediates." applies only when you stay on the very very limited groomed stuff. And the grooming isn't in the same planet in quality than places like Valle Nevado, Portillo, etc.

Conditions: Overnight freeze but temps high probably around 15c. Lifts run 10am-5pm, remember that they are only 30km from Portillo, but on a different time zone.

Skied from winterish windblown powder, some smooth buttered slopes...some inconsitent snow surfaces à la Arpa (for Tony). Some corn on the groomed stuff in the afternoon.

Why some people wouldn't like it: groomers are very limited. Lift are slows and long. Yes, it was worth 2 days...lift are too slow. 5200m on the 1st day, maybe 3500m yesterday...quit early. My legs were toasted + wanted to get ready for my 5pm bus.

Talk from the Skipass forum that they will be an expansion in 2010.

More when I get back.
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby Tony Crocker » Mon Aug 31, 2009 12:53 pm

I was frustrated that web info was so sketchy. The more consistent concern was about snow cover, not terrain. The timing of the widespread storm a couple of weeks ago must have helped a lot. And at least Los Penitentes has some altitude so it didn't get rained on later.

Overnight freeze but temps high probably around 15c.

This should be the recipe for corn, as at Portillo in 2007.

Some corn on the groomed stuff in the afternoon.

That will be mostly late morning on the developed part of Las Lenas above the hotels, which faces mostly east. This, by the way, is another flaw of the Valle Nevado group. There's minimal east facing terrain, so in the typical Andes weather pattern that Patrick describes (nearly my whole trip in 2007), you're stuck with hardpack in most places until noon or so. What is the range of exposures at Los Penitentes?

No dispute that one should try out Los Penitentes if travelling by bus/car from Santiago/Portillo to Mendoza. I just didn't think Patrick should extend his time there once we knew Marte was fixed. A day and a half seems about right.
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby Patrick » Mon Aug 31, 2009 8:10 pm

Tony Crocker wrote:I was frustrated that web info was so sketchy.


Almost zero also for La Hoya also.

Tony Crocker wrote:The more consistent concern was about snow cover, not terrain.


Didn't really see any snow coverage issues on the runs. Not sure off hand what the base is at and it might be a bit colder than Portillo? Not many stats and none aimed at NA ski areas don't really sale and keep track of this stuff for general consumption.

Some corn on the groomed stuff in the afternoon.


The is basically no real grooming here. The upper part of the mountain. Three runs (maybe 50-75feet wide) with two slight variation at some point. One run on the left of the ridge, the other on the right, plus one the ridge. 80-90% of the skiers were on them. Oh yeah, this I say that the grooming wasn't really good?

Tony Crocker wrote:What is the range of exposures at Los Penitentes?


You got the ridge plus you can traverse on the other side of the drainage on each size. The surface is huge for an area service by only one lift. Easier to see when I'll post the pics in 2010. :lol:

Tony Crocker wrote:No dispute that one should try out Los Penitentes if travelling by bus/car from Santiago/Portillo to Mendoza. I just didn't think Patrick should extend his time there once we knew Marte was fixed. A day and a half seems about right.


That road from after of Los Andes to maybe one hour before Mendoza is so spectacular. (I didn't see the Portillo road in 2007 - drove at night. Oh yeah, they added a va-et-vient on the other couloir next to Roca Jack. Seemed pretty spring snow to me. So spectacular the road is that I saw a poster for a tourist tour place with a picture of...Moraine Lake, in Banff National Park. Every Canadian knows that lake, it was on the back of our old $20 bills.

This is one advantage of not flying...I never want to sleep, just look at the scenary. However I know that not everyone is like that and some would rather sleep. On that note, I got to go and sleep on the bus tonight. Off to the bus station with my luggage I go. Bus leaves at 1am, less than 2 hours away.

(PS. Saw some people arriving for Leñas. Marte opened, but was closed again due to wind. Snow in the forecast. Any bets on how many days Marte will be open for my 6 days? I heard that the internet is real expensive in Leñas, so I might not make any updates for a while)
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby Tony Crocker » Tue Sep 01, 2009 12:09 pm

You got the ridge plus you can traverse on the other side of the drainage on each size.

Not the question I asked. Presumably with temps of 15C the sun was out so you could tell directions. If chair was on a south facing ridge, then you you have mostly east and west exposures on the fall lines from that ridge for example.

they added a va-et-vient on the other couloir next to Roca Jack.

I had noted that some time ago. Presumably that helps if the traverse between the couloirs burns off as in 2007. Another reason I might have put in a day there.

This is one advantage of not flying...I never want to sleep, just look at the scenery.

I will have that attitude more when I'm retired. When using a limited number of vacation days, I'm inclined to try to get the most for my time. Thus I bailed from the recent cruise after a week rather than being constrained to 2 port days from Kobe and then another 2 1/2 days at sea. Company and programs on the ship were very interesting, but I preferred to customize more time in Japan to do what I wanted there.

Not sure off hand what the base is at

You have an altimeter watch, so why don't you know?
and it might be a bit colder than Portillo?

That's a reasonable assumption (in winter) if altitude is similar. Not enough to offset the substantial difference in snowfall most of the time. Your visit was well timed in that regard.

Not many stats and none aimed at NA ski areas don't really save and keep track of this stuff for general consumption.

Definitely an annoyance. Particularly for an area like Chillan, which is clearly in a different climate zone from the places where we have data. Of the southern areas I don't have, that's the one for which info would be most useful to me.

I heard that the internet is real expensive in Leñas, so I might not make any updates for a while

There was free WiFi at the Piscis Hotel in 2005. That's where I was putting up reports in 2005 on Adam's laptop.
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby jamesdeluxe » Wed Sep 02, 2009 1:48 pm

If the past is any guide, we should be seeing photos of this trip in early June 2010.
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby skibum4ever » Thu Sep 03, 2009 8:29 pm

Please Patrick, we people who are stuck in the LA heatwave and fires would like to see a report and PICTURES of your currrent adventure. :dead horse:
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby Tony Crocker » Fri Sep 04, 2009 12:01 pm

No chance on the pics (james is right on that), as Patrick is still using that film camera AFAIK. I hope he finds out about the WiFi at the Piscis Hotel so we can at least get a report though.
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby Admin » Fri Sep 04, 2009 12:17 pm

My knowledge of SA geography is sorely lacking, so I'm not sure what this means for Patrick's Argentinean itinerary, but I understand that a major storm expected to deliver around a meter is moving into the Portillo area.
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby Tony Crocker » Fri Sep 04, 2009 1:09 pm

Las Lenas is about 2 1/2 degrees in latitude south of Portillo. Snowfall is 69% correlated. Marte is closed today, probably for wind, after being open all of the past week.

North America analogies at similar N/S distance:
Mammoth vs. Donner Pass 86% correlated
Donner Pass vs. Crater Lake 68% correlated
Crater Lake vs. Mt. Rainier 70% correlated
Mt. Rainier vs. Whistler 66% correlated
Alta vs. Brian Head 57% correlated
Correlations at comparable N/S distance in Colorado and the Northern Rockies are <50%.

FYI Chillan is about 3 degrees latitude south of Las Lenas
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby Patrick » Tue Sep 08, 2009 9:50 am

jamesdeluxe wrote:If the past is any guide, we should be seeing photos of this trip in early June 2010.
](*,)

I would love to pay just $1000 US for my pictures right now. All might be lost (stolen) forever...including the rest of my luggage. I just have my clothes that I'm wearing right now, wallet and passport. All the rest is gone.
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby skibum4ever » Tue Sep 08, 2009 12:55 pm

Patrick, we are so sorry to hear that. I feel sick inside.

We had some minor thefts in Chile, but losing everything is horrible. :-(
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby rfarren » Tue Sep 08, 2009 5:57 pm

Patrick wrote:
jamesdeluxe wrote:If the past is any guide, we should be seeing photos of this trip in early June 2010.
](*,)

I would love to pay just $1000 US for my pictures right now. All might be lost (stolen) forever...including the rest of my luggage. I just have my clothes that I'm wearing right now, wallet and passport. All the rest is gone.


Look at the bright side, you still have your wallet and passport. I'm not sure if you purchased travelers insurance, but in case you did, you should be able to get something back. I'm sorry to hear that happened though. I was just really worried that you may have lost your passport and wallet, which would be an absolute disaster! If you don't mind me asking, where was your stuff stolen?
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby Patrick » Tue Sep 08, 2009 6:21 pm

rfarren wrote:If you don't mind me asking, where was your stuff stolen?

In the taxi...then both it and the taxi dissappear.

Details here:

http://www.tetongravity.com/forums/show ... p?t=167614
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Re: Los Penitentes ARG - Aug 29-30, 09

Postby Tony Crocker » Wed Sep 09, 2009 2:00 am

Let's try to keep the Buenos Aires cab scam discussion here viewtopic.php?f=6&t=8146 for future reference.
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