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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Fresh Lake City
    Posts
    3,245

    This Spring on Stevens Peak, Northern Bitteroots, Idaho

    Stevens Peak is a Spokane and Inland Northwest classic. Located in the Idaho panhandle, straddling the Idaho and Montana border, it is frequented by many as it is pretty much the only easily accessible alpine area in the INW. The tallest peak in the main Bitteroot Range, Stevens Peak at 6338 feet offers a multitude of terrain options in its many drainages. Naturally when I moved to Spokane, the Stevens Peak area quickly caught my attention. Over the past few years, I have spent much of my time exploring areas lower in its drainages patiently waiting for a time when I would be able to ski the couloirs that stared at me from its north face. For many reasons, I was unable to get up and ski the couloirs off the summit in previous years; many due to instability concerns, insufficient time and me taking off to do field work in Montana every April. With low snow this year, one could drive all the way to the trailhead by early April and stability was set up like a late spring like snowpack by early March. It was time to do work……

    The Northside of Stevens Peak:

    Lone Lake Cirque of Stevens Peak (with the lines I skied this spring highlighted)


    March 6, 2015: On this day, I convinced my buddy kyle (bumski on this forum) to go for a ski tour to help prime me for a sawtooth yurt trip. It hadn’t snowed in almost a month in the INW so I figured conditions would be prime to ski some steeps. Well conditions were definitely firm, so we bailed on the main NW couloir and went for the one to its immediate skier’s left. It was chattery but still super fun to finally ski from the summit of stevens.

    bumski dropping in:

    Halfway down and Stoked!

    Skiing the low section:


    April 10, 2015: Kyle and I once again return to Stevens. Conditions look good so we head up to the peak. Conditions were good: consolidated pow sitting in the NW couloir. Finally after looking at this line for three years, fruition is mine and we get to ski it in great conditions.

    bumski dropping in:




    We skied it top to bottom, one at a time so those are my only pics of the descent.
    The hike out:


    April 15, 2015: I return to Stevens, this time by myself. As I’m getting ready to go, another car pulls up and positions himself into a weird parking spot, the driver jumps out and makes sure I can get by on the dirt road and explains that sometimes his car needs a jump start. Needless to say, I like this kid already. We both depart the trailhead at around the same time and make small talk. This isn’t an area where you commonly meet other people backcountry skiing so we decide to ski together. Turns out we both like skiing narrow strips of snow between tall rock walls. We decided to become friends, exchange numbers and make plans to ski again.

    Unfortunately, I didn’t take any action shots of the first line we skied that day. We skied the line immediately to skiers right of the main NW couloir.

    Stevens Peak from the North Ridge with our tracks in the first line of the day.


    Chase entering the second line of the day:






    Chase in the narrow section:


    I love these skis:


    May 1, 2015: May Day is a special ski day for me. Back in 2011, I had a glorious may day skiing with a bunch of buddies off fantasy ridge in the Wasatch Range and ever since then I have skied on May Day (or close to it, work schedules don’t always cooperate) and this year was no different. Chase and I quickly ascended Stevens and decided to switch it up by dropping into the Stevens Lakes drainage and ski the east face, then we re-summited and skied another lone lake chute.

    East face of Stevens:


    If you look closely at this photo, you can see our lines down the east face:

    Chase dropping into another chute:


    Hanging out in couloir is always a neat feeling:


    View from the halfway point looking up:


    Thanks for checking this out and remember “fuck alder!”

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    On your tic list
    Posts
    333
    Very nice. That looks like a fun mtn.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Montucky
    Posts
    1,062
    Nice work! Looks like a very fun combo of MT. / ID / BC

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    The Netherlands
    Posts
    203
    That face looks so fun! So many line options..

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    vernon
    Posts
    2,367
    Looks crazy big given the elevation
    www.skevikskis.com Check em out!

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