05-04-2009, 10:27 PM #1
TR: COMING SOON: "Skate the 14ers"
(1) Do not attempt.
(2) Featured snowskater was tripping on something, got lost on his way to the park.
(3) Anyone hurting themselves on a poorly built rock-gap jump at the bottom of Box Creek Cirque, please accept our condolences.
(4) I apologize.
Who: KansasBoarder, Non-Mag Wade
What: Ascent of Mt. Elbert (14,433) SE Ridge. Snowboard/snowskate descent via Box Creek Cirque/Humphrey's Drainage shitwack.
When: May 1st, 2009
Where: See Above
Why: Because by-gones are by-gones, and so on and so on.
While I have yet to fully comprehend my roomate's oft unique snowsports motivations, I feel obligated to bring you the following report. Perhaps a first descent needs be claimed, perhaps a first descent by snowskate is not worth claiming.
But what I witnessed last Friday on the highest peak in Colorado was pretty darn incredible; a remarkable display of athleticism, coordination, determination, courage, and stupidity.
Without further adue, I bring you the first documented snowskate descent of Mt. Elbert.
Before you get to slide down, you gotta get up:
Yup, the sun rose at some point during the day. Right behind a conveniently placed snowskating backcountry user:
The guidebooks put this route at Class I, but shit got overhangy near the summit block:
Future snowskating potential (La Plata):
And then I realized I hadn't been to Mt. Elbert:
Nothing like 4,000+ feet of the most variable, rotten, dust-affected, grossness to break one into backcountry snowskating....
Jokes aside, snowskating a 14er, especially one with the expected variation in terrain and conditions, is damn tough. There were several aspects that bordered on no-fall zones. Not deadly Capitol Peak no-fall zones. But mess up your day "french fry when you should have pizza-ed" high speed tumbles into exposed rock zones. Wade handled suck zones as any experienced rider would, with a focused commitment. At the bottom of his line, he collapsed; physically exaughsted from his less-than-efficient choice of equipment, mentally fatigued from the focus required to guide the skate down the Cirque safely.
Wade, in disbelief:
As any good partner would do, I decided to give Wade a rest before descending back to the TH. In other words, I hiked back up to the top of Box Creek for a second, NORTHERLY facing shot [photos Wade]:
The snow in the NE facing couloir was buttery smooth, a nice inch or two of windblown deposited ontop of a firmer underlayer. This surface condition was a HUGE changeup from every other aspect, where the dust-layer rules the day...
But I guess it's easy to let her loose on the apron with your feet strapped in:
At this point, following several photo-ops with confused/interested hiking groups, the altitude must have gotten to us, as things got EXTREME.
Rock-Gapper (see disclaimer):
Surfer style in the rotting mank:
A parting Lake County Scenic:
PS - If anyone knows how to fix a Nikon Telephoto lens that refuses to focus past 15 feet at any zoom, please send me a PM. Taking pictures with this parameter sucks...
Oh, and for those of you still wondering about Wade's abilities on a board...
Yeah, I hit it too...
An Evolutionary Rider
05-04-2009, 10:44 PM #2
Bwa! Crazy! Cool!
See you tomorrow, Wade! Eat your wheaties!Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.
Henry David Thoreau
05-04-2009, 10:48 PM #3
05-04-2009, 10:49 PM #4Registered User
- Join Date
- Mar 2008
awsome. and great photos.
05-04-2009, 10:51 PM #5
this is friggin' awesome and hilarious. and your pics are freakin crisp, colorful, full of life. very nice!!!!!
05-04-2009, 10:52 PM #6
That was sick! Check out http://starfishsnowskatemagazine.com for more non-binding silliness."No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible" -Stanislaw Jerzy Lec
05-04-2009, 11:13 PM #7
Sick pics and sick descent on that device! Believe it or not I saw a guy with one of those at 14,400 on Denali several years ago. Not sure about the utility but they certainly go with the aviator shades. Again, nice exposures.-You can't get hurt if you are in the air.
Caleb Wray Photography
05-04-2009, 11:13 PM #8Registered User
- Join Date
- Oct 2007
Wonderful photos. Glad to see folks having fun in the snow.
05-04-2009, 11:29 PM #9
That's just awesome.
05-04-2009, 11:45 PM #10
Clearly the future of big mountain BC touring. You know, people used to post TR's like this about snowboarding. Nice pics."We need sometimes to escape into open solitudes, into aimlessness, into the moral holiday of running some pure hazard, in order to sharpen the edge of life, to taste hardship, and to be compelled to work desperately for a moment at no matter what. -George Santayana, The Philosophy of Travel
...it would probably bother me more if I wasn't quite so heavily sedated. -David St. Hubbins, This Is Spinal Tap
05-04-2009, 11:48 PM #11
hahahha awesome!Originally Posted by blurred
05-05-2009, 12:11 AM #12
Wade seems like an interesting characterwww.skiwisp.com
Home sweet home.
05-05-2009, 01:27 AM #13
05-05-2009, 09:23 AM #14
Man your pic quality is so money!!!so many mountains...so little time
05-05-2009, 09:31 AM #15
Raising or lowering the bar? Can't decide
Nice TR, Funny shit
05-05-2009, 12:00 PM #16
You're pushing the sport, man.The trumpet scatters its awful sound Over the graves of all lands Summoning all before the throne
Death and mankind shall be stunned When Nature arises To give account before the Judge
05-05-2009, 12:06 PM #17Registered User
- Join Date
- Apr 2009
Damnit! Skiing the 14'ers just got less cool. Nice work guys. Highlarious.
05-05-2009, 01:25 PM #18
www.snowskatetv.com it's got some good video of some tahoe backcountry.Snow Flake Killer
05-05-2009, 03:11 PM #19
We're blessed to have such visionaries on TGR.
05-05-2009, 05:44 PM #20
These pics are so beautiful. Worth looking at over and over...
Thank you for the loaner beacon today, Brennan.Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.
Henry David Thoreau
05-05-2009, 05:59 PM #21not feeling real witty...
- Join Date
- Jan 2009
awesome pics... wish i had some better pics of my BF's snowskating adventures! now we've got some inspiration!
05-05-2009, 06:04 PM #22
if the shoe fits....
i really like the pictures this year KB. you gotta capture the brightness of the beach on a sunny party day with those camera skills (CO mini??)
keep the colorful stoke comingo--/\
-/ .) ' \ go with respect, get to know your mountains
/' (. ' |'\
' ' .) ' ,'
05-06-2009, 07:12 AM #23An Evolutionary Rider
05-06-2009, 09:35 AM #24
Pfft. No bindings,thats where itīs at.
Hehheh.. Pure awesomeness there!
And having painfully experienced the finnickness of those damn snowskates,well,letīs say that I wouldnt drag them to the mountains...
The floggings will continue until morale improves.
11-02-2009, 06:17 PM #25
Here's what's getting ready to go down soon...
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