Off Piste

Saturday I slept in and missed the early ski, and I waffled on the Velo Club 45 mile ride until it was too late, so I went for a solo ski up the Alpine Loop from the Provo Canyon side.

Before I left the house, I used Google Earth to reminded myself where the 055 Lame Horse Trail (some call it Jurassic Park), in case I felt like doing a little off piste exploring.

I went up the snow-packed road a little over a mile then ventured off looking for 055. I found it quickly. It was only 20 yards from the road and it was a fairly established skin track.

After a while the skin track ended and I made my own tracks.

Only a few times was the way unclear. Usually a shallow trough was detectable in the snow.

It was a nice day, sunny and not too cold. And the trees were actually quite lovely.

Stopped at the Alpine Loop summit to eat and take in the view.

I went up a little higher to scout out a route over to the drainage I had skied last year. I followed some tracks initially then went off on my own. Coming around a point I could see I'd need to go over another ridge, but I didn't have time or energy for it so I headed down.

At first the hillside was open and I traversed back and forth easily. (I can't telemark turn, especially on XC skis.) Then it got brushier and steeper. The going was not easy. But I eventually made it back to the trail.

I stuck with the trail for a while but it was steep enough that descending it was hairy so I bailed onto the road (another bushwhack).

Now I was pooped and my back and shoulders were tired from all the poling. I was glad it was a fairly mellow glide back to the car. And I had this to look at:

It was fun to get out for a little ski adventure. I liked the trail and will go up it again. For the descent, I'll stick to the road. If this winter lasts I'll make another attempt to get to the drainage that was fun to descend.Link

Oh, and tonight I hit Brighton for some night skiing after work. The snow is hard and just short of icy. Some loose stuff on top. I met Mark and his son Alder for a few runs. I had fun. Well worth $17.

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