Monday, March 30, 2009

Skiing in the Wind

I hooked up with my partner, Steve and headed up to Onion Valley above the town of Independence. The road was totally clear to the trailhead where there was plenty of snow. The winds at the trailhead though were fierce, so getting the gear together and getting going was trying.

We headed south, up towards Robinson Lake and quickly were out of the worst of the wind. We passed a couple of nice chutes as we climbed higher, eventually reaching treeline where the winds were, again, very intense, so we retreated to the most attractive of the chutes we saw earlier.
Here's Steve booting up the runout from the chute with Indpendence Peak behind him.
More booting, with Owens Valley in the background.
It got a little steep near the top, but the booting was good. We had enough boot penetration to feel secure, but not too deep as to be drudgery.
We reached the top of the chute and traversed over to the ridgetop. The winds were absolutely ripping. Here's Steve peering over the edge.
The ridge provided some excellent alpine views as long as you could tolerate looking into freight train winds pelting your face with ice crystals.
The ski down was firm. Firm windboard (not so bad) and firm windcrust (kinda chunky). Sideslipping and traversing were the order of the day, but we did manage a few turns here and there.
We actually found a little softened corn snow lower down.
We managed to have a fine day in the mountains!


cyclingchef said...

Do you guys ever work? Good for you, the skiing looks awesome and it's a tough job but someone's gotta do it, right?

Scott E said...

In the interest of keeping my job I must point out that the post went up on Monday, but the outing was Sunday.

Yeah, it's a real tough job.
We suffer all day and think it's great!