Came up for my yearly visit to the rockpile. Every year I promise myself I'm going to come up earlier and more often. Every year I come up later and later. Maybe next year!!
A windy and cold forecast had me nervous about the snow conditions. The summit wasn't supposed to get above freezing and high winds would provide well below freezing wind chills.
The wind was howling at HoJo's but the ravine provided the shelter and it wasn't an issue at all. I felt silly for expecting hard snow becasue when I got to touch to the stuff it was absolutely perfect. Hard was not a word I would use to describe it. The caretaker told me all the rain had helped keep it soft despite the cold temps overnight. Abundant sunshine helped too.
Left Gully was recommended and it looked great from the approach. I had never skied LG before despite many trips to the ravine. I think I've skied every other line so I was stoked that LG was pretty much the only option.
Man is LG steep at the top! as I dropped in, the shadows at the very top caused some hardened top crust and as my skies became a bit squirrely, I had an Oh ****! moment. It was soft enough to turn in though and I had a great couple runs. LG was kind of a challenge to get to with some bushwacking, but getting out was a breeze and you can ski to the bottom of the ravine.
Chute looked great too so I hiked up that too. It doesn't have snow all the way to the top like LG but it was well worth it just to carve turns through that narrow rock pinch. The sight and sound of your snow slough pouring through that funnel before you is hard to describe.
Hopefully LG and Chute were as great this weekend as they were on Thursday.
Taken from emergency cache
upper third of LG
Good view of Chute
LG looking down
Top of Lg and summit