backcountry skiing with the foothill freak

November 2004 << PREVIOUS :: NEXT >>

November 30
Circle all wack off
Pleanty of gate bashing backcountry off circle all peak. I'd reccommend several more feet of snow before returning here...

November 28
Alta Resort Day
My friends made me do it! Chocking on powder on the first run seemed worth the price of admission. Mixed feelings about the new chair...

November 27
Georges Bowl
Perfect choice for this day as the avy danger grew with every lap. Tons of fun to be out during some major accumulation.

November 26
Leftover Turkey Day Tour
What could possibly be better than eating turkey after a full day of skiing? Why, it's skiing the day after thanksgiving with a backpack full of turkey leftovers! To Share the love, we brought Star Child with us to one last tour at Deer Valet before the resort opens next weekend. There was about 8 inches of new snow on top of a mysterious and often crusty base that was constantly challenging your fore & aft center of balance. Looked good, felt like shit. I always think of Deer Valley as a warm haven, but suprisingly cold temps kept us moving. The stellar leftovers had to wait for the drive home...

November 25
Turkey Day Tour
Sure, the Thanksgiving day feast was going to be at the freak Bachealor Pad, but that's no reason to stay home cooking all day. We simply divied out cooking responsibilities and found someone to watch the turkey for us. When it comes to skiing, at times you must delegate! Despite rather low moral and less than inspiring conditions, we managed to put in a couple laps in Maybird, and make it back to the pad in time to eat ourselves into a coma.

November 20
Days Fork Snowboarding
Lucky for us, there were still some untracked lines in Days fork. It's been almost three weeks since significant precipitation, yet we found some absolutely scrumptous powder. Even more proof that ski resorts should just be avoided entirely....

November 9
Cloud Chasing on Mt. Wire
5 AM I got the call. Powder Princess was blowing chunks to the proceline throne. Without a backup buddy to ski with I decided to go back to sleep. But my thighs kept me awake. They wanted to climb. They didn't care if it was dark and rainy out. They wanted to pound out some vert. So my legs dragged me out of bed and up to Red Butte, where they took me up my favorite trail that goes straight from the car to the top of Mt. Wire. The smell of wet sage was a welcome scent, overpowering the stale wafts of smog and ozone. Climbing the cold, wet rungs of the radio tower to the top provided a 360 view of nothing but fog. Rain chased me back down to the valley.

November 7
Sniffer Ski At Deer Valley, Empire Area
Suprisingly, we weren't the only totally desparate skiers out there who had decided to brave the early summer like heat. Star Child was thrilled to finally get in some quality powder porpoiseing. Deer Valley is an excellent spot for early season sniffer-skiing as dogs are welcome and some steep, N facing lines are right in front of the parking lot. Watch out for brown snow and bring some sun screen.


Twig-a-lishous and Powder Princess looking for some
boys to intimidate in Wolverine Cirque.

November 6
Chute schopping: Wolverine cirque and Tuscarora
We hiked up Grizzely Gulch, following the ridge along Patsy Marley, The Cirque, up to Wolverine peak, with our heads glued to our left shoulders, looking for the perfect chute. The Sickel seemed long and tasty so we hit that for starters. After another line in the cirque, we worked our way over towards Tuscarora were we skied a north facing chute, then crossed over a notch onto the east face, which was sun crusted to perfection. We finished with a setting sun home run from 10,595 (Point Supreme?).


Foothill shreds Baldy Main Chute, Helmutt practices good skiing safety above.

November 4
Baldy Main Chute
Deciding to ski main chute was easy as looking down little chute was a real sphincter tightner. The low snowpack accentuated the teeth of this run, and the crux was narrow and long enough to ensure more side slipping than I care to practice before breakfast.

Main Chute was soft and powdery, allowing smooth, round turns. Tombstone at the bottom was as good as ever. The real danger of the day was when we tucked the semi-groomed run back to base. I forgot to pre-jump a big rollover near the new mid-station and caught more air than recommended when going 30mph+ over a still frozen, hacked groom job on ultra-light rando gear.

It wasn't a total yardsale. After I had finally come to a stop, one ski had somehow managed to stay on. I had skidded so hard that when I stood up my pants had been twisted around backwards! I was still laughing about it when I made it to work an hour later.

Baldy Chutes are always an excellent choice for an early morning flushing.

November 2
Scott's Bowl
If you're ever thinking of skiing Scott's bowl this early in the season, I've got a bit of advice for you: DON'T GO! If you do go, I've got some more advice: you're probably bigger, stronger, and smarter than those sticks at the bottom of the run so lean back, keep your tips up, and for god's sake, don't have any crash landings on punjabis. Beautiful place to watch the sunrise and to contemplate wether the noise that radiates from Little Cottonwood Canyon comes from wind, water, or traffic.