Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Onion Valley

I was happy to get in another quick ski outing before work. Might have only one or two left this season!

Onion Valley is holding up pretty well with continuous snow to the parking area if you are headed towards the Robinson Lake or Kearsarge Pass drainages. It's a bit of walking if you're heading up Golden Trout Lake way.

The snow is getting sun cupped on the lowest slopes, but is smooth and plentiful above 10,000' or so.

The view up towards University Peak seems to require a photo every time!

Ditto for these stately tree snags.
I got up to the southeast flank of Mt Gould and decided to just head up the slope looker's right of the long, horizontal bare patch. Kearsarge Pass is far left near that notch.
I figured I'd climb as far as I wanted and turn around. The snow had a thin soft layer on it which was perfect for booting until I hit a little roll over where it was soft no more.

With the winds increasing I figured it was time to turn around!

Here's the view from my highpoint with University Peak distant left, and the aptly named Big Pothole Lake front right.
I also enjoyed this distant view of Mt Brewer. Looks like that east ridge could go on skis!
After two or three turns on the firm, but smooth snow, I found just terrific skiing all the way down to the last bench above the trailhead. The lowest slopes were getting pretty soft - even at 10:00 or so.

Nice way to start a work day!

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