In my last post, I mentioned a little mission of mine: to ski every major line on the north face of Mt. Macdonald in Rogers Pass. After skiing the number 10/11 couloir the week previous, I had only a handful left – the most interesting being the number five couloir. With good stability still hanging on and Valerio and Ryan joining to form a strong crew, it should go without saying that… Read More
The north face of Mount Macdonald is a special place. To say it towers above the highway east of the Rogers Pass Discovery Centre would be an understatement. That its dark, forbidding rampart is split by not just one, but a handful of world class couloirs never ceases to amaze me, and I’ve been on a mission to ski my way through them for years.
Well, what a rough early season that was. I came home from a month and a half in the Andes (which I swear I’ll write about soon) all full of stoke. But as is nearly always the case, early snowfall rotted out and everything in the Rockies went to basal facet hell. Further west, I missed a little November window due to work and then all kinds of snowpack nastiness turned up…. Read More
After climbing Uto Peak’s southwest ridge with Ryan in July, I was left wondering just how fast I could get up there. We’d made good time, but knowing we had a long, long alpine ridge ahead of us we certainly hadn’t been going at anything resembling full speed. When, in late August it was still on my mind, I decided to go for it. I figured at worst I’d blow myself up… Read More
On any given day during the winter, you can find a veritable United Nations in the parking lot of the Rogers Pass Discovery Centre. Its reputation as a ski touring mecca is well earned, but perhaps overshadows that fact that for the other half of the year, it becomes one of the best, most accessible alpine rock playgrounds in North America. Despite living just down the road in Golden for the past… Read More
My days in Rogers Pass have been limited this season, which has given me a bit more motivation to put in the effort for some new (to me) summits and lines. After a few weeks of what felt like nonstop snowfall and great tree skiing lately, things went clear and cold. Luke and I got talking and decided to poke our heads above treeline to see how things were looking up there, as… Read More
Some things don’t go as planned. Such was the case in early December when a friend and I were approaching Mt. Chephren’s N face, eyes set on the Kum Ba Jah Couloir. Our eyes were so set, in fact, that we neglected to realize how thin our margin of safety had become as we approached the line. Spurred on by better than anticipated stability, we rationalized that, despite sloughing on other aspects… Read More
I have a love/hate relationship with the extended high pressure system. This most recent one, though, has so far served up nothing but good times. By virtue of the weird fall we had, the alpine is caked with a little extra snow, despite lower elevations looking only marginally better than they did in October. That means bigger lines are coming in, even if their approaches aren’t. After a few weeks of mainly working… Read More
A brief departure from reality on the wild north face of Mt. Macdonald.
An introduction to the speed traverse, a day that refused to end, a big Rogers Pass north face and some alone time with the Gulo.