Telemark and backcountry skiing

Early morning - The Ramp

 Brian, Tim, and I pulled into the upper Bridger (early season) parking "lot" shortly after 6am.  We braved the modestly cold temps (single digit F) and let our headlamps lead the way.  Eventually we reached the Bridger Ridge on top of the ramp and enjoyed skiing in the early morning light.  The only hiccup was Charlie the dog who seemed to have developed a fear of steep slopes and decided to stop.  Brian had to badger him down.  Poor Charlie.  He had a rough go skiing Sunday on a truly difficult slope, but today's challenges were mostly in his head.

Overall a great way to start a day.

First light:
First light

Up we go:
Skinng up
Nearing the top

After 2 hours of skinning, we're on top:
On the ridge

Brian with Charlie before Charlie remembered his phobia:
Brian and Charlie

Tim taking advantage of the moment:

Meadow Skipping

The snow in the Bridgers was better than expected.  We found a few inches of fresh snow on a firm, skiable base.  Today's destination was Bradley Meadows. 

Fun moments from the day included:

  • Interesting route choice that had us steep angle boot packing on sugar snow over a very firm slick base;
  • Charlie the lab howling and refusing to move as he tried to hang onto a slick slope;
  • Julie skied in boots without an insole (left them in her other boots) = ankle blisters;
  • Slow motion unintended 720 in the 4Runner, with snow tires even.

Charlie's Hell Slope

Julie skins up

Brian and Julie up up up

Brian and Charlie



New Schlasman lift at Bridger Bowl

Julie and I took the dogs up to Bridger today for some early season skiing.  Additionally, today was Julie's first day on dynafits, a delightful alpine touring binding.  Dynafits are very light, have an excellent touring mode, and ski downhill surprisingly well.  

Anyhow, while skiing we enjoyed seeing the new Schlasman lift at Bridger Bowl.  This new lift opens new terrain that will be be ungroomed.  Skiers will have to have avalanche beacons.  Here is a shot of the top of the new lift.  (click on an image to go to an image gallery where there are more photos from today)

Schlasman lift

Here is Julie on her new dynafit setup


Oct 12: First ski day of 2008/09 season!

Julie, Brian, and I headed up to the Bridgers early this morning to take advantage of a nice Oct snow storm. We skied 15-24" of wonderful, dense pow pow.

Brian skiing

Skiing with the dogs

Julie and I took the dogs out for a fun local ski. We headed up to Goose Creek and enjoyed great weather and some wind and sun worked but untracked snow. The views were delightful.

At one point I had to carry Mad up. Carrying 50lbs while skiing up a steep slope wasn't easy.  And, in case you've never tried to carry a blue heeler, just let me say they aren't exactly happy to be carried.  It is like holding a Tazmanian Devil.  But carrying is what was needed.  Her short legs, small paws, and chunky stature had her "high centered." Jack had to work, but his long legs and larger paws kept him moving forward. Funny, but on the way down, Mad is often faster than Jack, simply because she descends with wreckless abandon.  That stout little body and gravitiy combine to make quite a combination.

Here are Mad and Jack on the descent, smartly staying in the ski tracks. Click the image to see more pictures from today.


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