New Year’s Eve Backcountry Skiing on Mount Sopris, Colorado — And Happy New Year!

Post by blogger | January 1, 2007      

Happy New Year everyone! In celebration, yesterday we did a mega-slog on Mount Sopris here in western Colorado. We normally use snowmobiles to shave about 9 miles off this trip, but figured doing it unmechanized would be a good fitness blowout, test of boot fit, etcettera. It was cold and late when we reached the east (lower, not main) summit, so we turned around there. Still had a day with about 17 miles of trudge (got a blister, shucks). Skied the whole thing, lots of hardpan and breakable crust, but incredible based silky powder in the trees. Yep, Happy New Year!

Backcountry skiing Mount Sopris, Colorado
Near the east summit of Mount Sopris, Colorado. Everything in our highcountry is somewhat wind blasted, but our early season sticky snow is still providing skiable lines, albeit not exactly the perfect ski conditions! We used crampons for this part of the climb, and we’re glad we had the spikes as we encountered a bit of white ice.


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12 Responses to “New Year’s Eve Backcountry Skiing on Mount Sopris, Colorado — And Happy New Year!”

  1. Rando Boz January 1st, 2007 9:46 am

    Love the site Lou and nice work on Sopris…
    Just an FYI that if you search eBay under Fritschi you will see couple of FT88’s. Thought they might make a nice addition to your museum.

  2. Lou January 1st, 2007 12:09 pm

    Hi Rando, glad you enjoy!

    Thanks for the heads up, but we’ve already got FT88 in the collection and in the museum:

    What we need is the civilian colored version (purple?) rather than white.

  3. Mark January 1st, 2007 6:06 pm

    Sweet! What gear did you use? I can’t wait to do some tours like that with my new setup.

  4. Lou January 1st, 2007 7:35 pm

    Wall to wall Dynafit for a trip with that much distance, lots of water, a thermos…

  5. Mike January 1st, 2007 11:31 pm

    I’m thinking about getting a BCA Alp 40 pack, and appreciated your recent review. Is that one that’s going uphill in the second photo of the Sopris trip? How are skis attached diagonally to this pack? Thanks, Lou.

  6. reto January 2nd, 2007 2:05 am

    hello everyone

    we are from switzerland and are coming to the US january 28. we are good skiers and want to finde the good stuff! we like it steep and we ski hard! please help us! where should we go?? thanks for your help!!
    Reto and Theodor

  7. adam olson January 2nd, 2007 8:11 am

    CHEERS to a winter ascent of Sopris, thats a rare treat for this time of the year. Even with marginal skiing! you can call any time for a tow if you would like you know.
    I hope you have a good time “over the pond!”

  8. Lou January 2nd, 2007 9:10 am

    Adam, after that slog you can bet I’ll be begging for a tow behind your 4-stroke Caddy. It’s still legal to sled up to an excellent position for Sopris access, and if I still had a snowmobile I’d be up there almost every week. The tree skiing on the north side of the east ridge is exceptional.

  9. Doug January 2nd, 2007 5:07 pm

    Hi Lou,

    Enjoyed the report on Sopris and am encouraged to get up there myself. Bye the way, my wife Liz and I had a brief chat with you on xmas eve in the Tiehack parking lot. Best of luck on the trip to Europe, I’ve heard the snow there has picked up considerably, particularly in Switzerland and Chamonix. Safe travels and hope to bump into you again soon!
    – Doug

  10. Thomas January 3rd, 2007 1:02 am

    keeping it real and unmechanized is always good for the soul, if not for the sole…..

  11. Lou January 3rd, 2007 6:38 am

    Doug, Sopris is special, enjoy! Thomas, I’ll sacrifice the sole for the soul any day (grin). Perhaps earning my turns and slogging for miles compensates for my not telemarking and thus lacking soul?

  12. Josh Cullen January 3rd, 2007 12:12 pm

    Nice. went up the day before but turned around just passed the wilderness boundary at the lakes. Might as well have been on the nordic gear since didn’t go further.

    Also – Found.. A digital camera at the crown area parking lot on Dinkle Road last Friday. Somebody set it on the hood of my truck. Unfortunately it looks to have been driven over first. If the owner can identify, they can still salvage the memory card I suppose.

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