The following is a tale of my worst outing of the season. There seems to be more color in tales of things gone wrong than in the stories of everything falling neatly into place. For a color wheel’s worth, read on.
I headed up to Jackson Hole from the Salty City for a ski descent of the Chouinard Couloir on the Middle Teton with David Yogg and his pal Zach Guy. This descent is named after Yvon Chouinard, the founder of Patagonia, a legend who has put up an incredible number of rock climbing routes. I’d guess he looked at Albert Ellingwood’s 1923 handiwork, now named the Ellingwood Couloir, and decided to check out the obvious, excellent line just left of the by-then classic ascent route. Somehow ignoring all this history and sleeping through the 3:00 a.m. alarm, I roused from sleep at 3:23 to pull on my gear and was waiting for the fellas Continue reading ‘The Middle Teton’s Chouinard Couloir Ski Descent’
This webpage is dedicated to human powered adventures – primarily, but not exclusively, to ski mountaineering. Much of the venturing has taken place, and shall continue, in two different mountain ranges – the Tetons of Wyoming and the Wasatch of Utah.
It is being created for various reasons, the most primary of which is to attempt to answer the seemingly eternal question, ‘Why persist in taking such risks?’ I get asked this question a lot, as I suspect do many people who venture with skis outside of established resort area boundaries. I have answered the question in more ways than it can be phrased, and yet am never completely happy with the answer I give. That’s because any answer to this question is necessarily incomplete. Here I endeavor to more fully answer the inquiry. Perhaps I shall discover some new answers along the way as well. If nothing else, there will be more adventures.
Inspiration for many deeds. The Grand Teton.
Still enjoying a spell of stable March snow in the Wasatch, I decided to attempt a ski descent of Rampage, a steep and exposed line on an unnamed peak just west of Monte Cristo.
Rampage, above the rightmost cliffs in the center of the pic.
Heading out solo, and using the Heart of Darkness as a pass-through, I rappelled in, skied down, and traversed to the bottom of the line.
Along the way, I watched the sun rise, and shortly afterwards noticed four hot air balloons floating above Park City in the distance.
Four hot air balloons.
Rampage is a double fall line ramp located Continue reading ‘Skiing Rampage – Wasatch Mountains’
Hours from sunrise
Here in the Heart of Darkness
Where even demons fear to tread
Restraints that hold you down
and render you helpless…
~ Ronan Harris, from the unreleased version of Still Waters
“I tried to break the spell–the heavy, mute spell of the wilderness–that seemed to draw him to its pitiless breast by the awakening of forgotten and brutal instincts, by the memory of gratified and monstrous passions.” – Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness
Pick your poison – a Futurepop quote or a literary quote. Both get to the heart of the matter..
The Heart of Darkness proper – from a rarely seen angle. Monstrous Passions? You bet!
With the arrival of some stable new snow on top of the snowpack in early March, I headed to the Wasatch’s Heart of Darkness for a solo ski run. Parking near the Shallow Shaft Restaurant, I worked my way up to Cardiff Peak and continued along the west ridge to Superior. While there was also a skin track to Monte Cristo, and a few tracks from the prior day down the Edge of the World heading into the Monte Cristo Gully, no tracks Continue reading ‘Heart of Darkness, Wasatch Range’