Can You Stand Any More Snow? We can. But lunch at the Cook Shack was good too.


Post by WildSnow.com blogger | June 16, 2008      

Sweet! Independence Pass this weekend was that big tasty bar of Häagen-Dazs® you sneak at the quickmart during your fillups. Crunchy, yummy, with plenty of creamy goodness once you get the wrapper off and really dig in.

Spring backcountry skiing.
Pete cuts through the chocolate dip coating up on Geissler, NE face couloir.

Spring backcountry skiing.
Funny what you see at the trailhead. My other car is a snowboard; my other car is a Porsche; my other car is a ????

Friday’s sport plan was multiple laps on East Geissler (Geissler #1). Air was amazingly cold up there. Nothing softening quick so we skied east off the summit for first run down creamy corn. After climbing the peak again, we opted for a north face coulie we’d had our eyes on for a while. Bob and I have been knocking these “mini golf” lines off for years starting as far back as the 1970s (I’ve been skiing the Pass since around 1968, in one capacity or another), but neither of us could recall having gotten this particular line, which is one of the closer to starting from the summit.

Amazing how you can always find something new up in this vast area. Indeed, it would be tough for any one person to ski every line in the Independence Pass area. Think about it. At the least, you can easily scope a hundred square miles of alpine ski mountaineering terrain when you’re standing on any one of the peaks up here. That includes three nearby fourteeners, scores of thirteeners, and hundreds of other summits, flanks, couloirs and bowls.

Spring backcountry skiing.
Geissler as viewed from northwest, dotted lines show various options off summit of main Geissler. You can drop these then easily wrap around to Geissler Pass, or do the bonus bowls below and spend more time skinning back over.

Spring backcountry skiing.
Our first drop Friday was the east facing down to Lost Man Lake. Excellent.

Spring backcountry skiing.
Climbing back up for lap 2, the wind was blowing snow around like it was a warm day in January. Nothing like being at 13,000 feet. Works every time.

Spring backcountry skiing.
Louie gets another taste of Häagen-Dazs®

Spring backcountry skiing.
Whoops, almost forgot about day 2. To keep up the ice cream feast, Lisa, Louie and I did a family trip back to the Geisslers on Saturday. Instead of working from east to west as usual, we instead climbed Linkins Peak first, did a lap on it, then did an alpine ridge walk to West Geissler where we lapped a corn bowl. After that we grilled a few burgers with our new portable barbecue, then headed back home to regroup and do some lawn mowing. Yes, Virginia, there are places in the world with no snow.

Spring backcountry skiing.
Indeed, there does come a time when the call for activities other than snow glisse works its insidious way into WildSnow.com World HQ. Rumble Bee has been patiently waiting for a spring cruise. What better to get that going than a Father’s Day wheel up in the Schofield Pass area between here and Crested Butte, Colorado? Along with that, a Dad style lunch at the BBQ in Marble made for a fantastic Father’s Day Sunday.

I was laughing at Woody’s, as I couldn’t help thinking that up in Aspen they were having the Food & Wine Classic, where world renowned chefs were wooing foodies with their auras. Meanwhile, many mountainous mile away from Aspen’s haute food festival but still in Colorado, Woody stops by our table. He takes a sip off his perfectly chilled canister of Pabst then holds forth on exactly how he creates the smoked turkey that Lisa is swooning over. As they’d say in French: authentique’ !!

BTW, Woody’s is open all summer. Head up there and MAKE SURE you tell him WildSnow sent you. Woody mentioned that he’d had quite a few people visit these past couple months who mentioned they’d learned about his restaurant here on WildSnow. He deserves your patronage, as having an excellent eatery in an “end of valley” location such as Marble is incredibly fun — even useful — but somewhat unusual. His place reminds me of the small gasthauses you hit in Austria after a tour, only this one is total Americana, as it really should be.

(Schofield report: Washouts an mudslide on Leadking Loop are repaired, but they’ve still got the Loop road closed due to excess moisture as well as Lost Trail Creek being difficult to cross while in spate. Schofield road to Crystal is open, but closed above there due to being blocked by snow drifts.)

Spring backcountry skiing.
Crystal Mill, yesterday, on the Schofield Pass Road.

Spring backcountry skiing.
Almost forgot this photo of Bob. Someone has to get the Perl under control — he has too much fun.



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Comments

7 Responses to “Can You Stand Any More Snow? We can. But lunch at the Cook Shack was good too.”

  1. Scott B June 16th, 2008 10:24 am

    Lou,

    I noticed that car on Friday also; pretty funny. I thought I saw your truck at the upper switchback also, but I wasn’t sure. There was a bunch of stickers in the back window that looked to be up your alley, but one that I didn’t think would have been yours. I was hoping I might run into you to thank you for your Canon 300D.

    We skied East Geissler on Thursday and after waiting on the summit for an hour, it never softened up and started to snow. Linkins Peak on Friday was good. Saturday, we skied the North side of Independence Mountain, which was my favorite of the three. Thanks go out to whoever placed the extension ladder over the river.

    Now if they would just open the Lincoln gulch (?) road, I might drive back down there for a crack at Grizzly. It was calling to me from the summit of East Geissler.

  2. Lou June 16th, 2008 10:29 am

    Scott, yeah, that’s my truck. As for non sequitur stickers, are you referring to the carbon offsets sticker or the TetonAt sticker. The offsets sticker is to keep from being vandalized or cursed by peace loving warmists, while in the case of TetonAT, I’ve supported Romeo since the day he asked me to link WildSnow to his then fledgling blog. He’s doing a great job now, so stickers ahoy!

  3. ray June 16th, 2008 11:37 am

    lou,

    re: overall post today, nice variety
    re: unlimited lines, given the wide variations in snowpack over my humble eight year bc hobby (thanks for getting me started!), i’ve been impressed with how different the “menu” is each spring.
    re: offsets sticker, me too 😉
    re: mr. bob perlmutter, might we simply refer to him as “king fun”?!?!

    got a newbie friend out for a great day on la plata yesterday. gotta give you credit for so much of what i know, way beyond guidebooks.

    peace

  4. Paul June 16th, 2008 12:22 pm

    Can you say Never Summer! This is just great that people can enjoy skiing well into June.

    If anyone is interested in skiing in the Southern Hemisphere, or at the last few open areas in North America, check out OnTheSnow.com.

  5. Scott Nelson June 16th, 2008 2:59 pm

    Nice write up Lou! As always, thanks for sharing the great times you all are having.
    Toured up Mt. Blarney this AM, skiied the couloir skiers right of the summit (excellent corn), hiked back out and up Blue Peak to ski the NW couloir, but really difficult to get into, snow is almost gone at the top entrance and didn’t feel like trashing my ski bases, nor downclimbing the scree/talus, so opted to ski the SE face of Blue back down(again, really good corn) and head back to my car at the top. Really good tour overall. BTW, I noticed that the Lincoln Creek gate was open at around 12 pm on my way back down.

  6. Scott B June 16th, 2008 9:49 pm

    Lou,

    LOL. Yeah, it was the carbon offset sticker that stood out.

  7. Ryan June 16th, 2008 11:37 pm

    Lou, you almost made beer come out of my nose with that bumper sticker. I’ve switched to climbing mode already for the season, but seeing the tasty photos you keep on posting, it’s making me think about slapping the skins on the Shuksans and heading over to Dawsonville.

    Keep having fun out there.

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