With potential rain in the forecast this weekend, we decided to go for one more low elevation attempt. I’m not going to explain the details of where this area is in respect for the people who set the skin track. But I will say that it has some of the best/only pillow lines in Utah, and it’s some of the most fun and playful skiing I’ve ever done.
We met up to start skiing at around 1:00 and started the approach. It takes a little over an hour before you get to the good stuff. At this point we started skinning up one of the steep faces. With a perfect skin track and kick turns galore, we made it to the top without too much difficulty. Our skins were having some problems with snow sticking to the bottom, leaving us with little grip or glide, but that was mostly a problem earlier on where the snow was pretty warm due to temperature in the 40’s today. At the top of the ridge the cornices were HUGE! It was a little frightening to walk under one to get to the top.
We walked along the ridge looking for a good place to drop in. It turns out there were a lot of good options, but it all looked kind of sketchy from the top. At one point I started to go towards the edge, because it looked like there were pine trees right next to it, so I figured there wasn’t a cornice. Boy was I wrong. Thankfully I decided to go more to the side and what I saw blew my mind. There was a cornice the size of a house that I almost went to the edge of. The trees that I thought were only 10 feet tall were actually 40 feet tall. It was wild.
After walking along the ridge for a while we finally decided on a place to drop in. It was amazing.
The most fun skiing. The most.
John radioed and said that if I cut left there was a good pillow line! I’ve always liked the idea of skiing pillow lines, but I haven’t done it at all. And I have very little experience hitting drops in general. When I used to ski in the resort I would hit some cliffs, but for the past several years in the backcountry, I’ve mostly just made nice easy turns.
I somehow crashed right before the line, but got up and hit it. Just two small drops in a row, but it was magnificent! I felt on top of the world! A little bit lower down I hit another small drop and totally tomahawked! Good times.
After that the whole face opened up and it was the best playground for skiing I’ve ever experienced. Endless hits of all sizes all over the mountain. Hitting this run with good snow, would be one of the greatest things ever.
My partners were getting a little tired and so we decided to call it after one lap, which ended up being a good thing because the winds that came in as we were coming down were intense, and had we been on the ridge it would not have been a fun experience.
I hope that it doesn’t rain in this area this weekend, but it might. It’s right around the rain/snow threshold. So, pray for snow down low.