Saturday, December 23, 2006

Belated ski trip report

After NIPS in Vancouver and Whistler, I stayed to ski three days. On the last day, I took a backcountry tour guided by Conny Amelunxen, a cool, informative guide who mentioned modestly some climbing and guiding in South America, which turns out to be rather extensive (just search for his name).

We left from the bottom of the Harmony chair as the last snow showers behind the previous day's storm cleared out. We skinned up Burnt Stew Trail and dropped onto the Flute Creek drainage. After some beacon practice, we skinned up to a pass, skied down on a mix of powder and wind-affected stuff, had lunch, skinned back up, and dropped for the best run of the day onto the Oboe Creek drainage. Excellent powder was had all the way to the bottom (see the picture). The skin out was long. Late in the afternoon we came back to another pass back into the Flute Creek area, dropped into wind scoured and then a thin and breakable wind slab and finally a few turns on deep wind deposited powder down to the bottom of the drainage, for a skin up to Burnt Stew, and a twilight schuss back to the village.

We were lucky with the weather and with the conditions, which were safer than one might expect after a big storm.

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