12 Glory Laps in 12 Hours

12 Glory Laps in 12 Hours
Last February 20th, I hiked and skied 12 laps on Mt. Glory. 19,638 feet climbed with skis on my back and 19,638 feet skied to raise money for Camp To Belong. It's snowing again and I'm ready for the 2nd edition! Click the logo for more info and ways to support camp!

Camp To Belong - Elk Mountain Grand Traverse

Camp To Belong - Elk Mountain Grand Traverse
We're racing the Elk Mtn Grand Traverse this March, a 40 mile ski race across the roof of Colorado in the middle of the night! Click for updates on our training and fundraising progress!

Peaked Sports

Peaked Sports
Driggs, ID

Friday, February 25, 2011

Disappointment Peak

February 12th, 2011

Disappointed indeed as we never did reach the summit due to hurricane force winds at 10,000ft, but the ski down the couloir was a worthy cause.

Another beautiful morning in Grand Teton National Park

Someday, I will get some lighter skis, but in the meantime, will continue to push these monsters around. They've done me well.

Looking back over Bradley Lake

Heading up the couloir to the ridge of Disappointment. The snow was breaking under my feet which made for slow going.

Looking at the South Teton and up South Garnet Canyon. The east side of the Middle Teton is the huge rock face on the right side of the picture.

We hunkered down in this wind-scoured alcove next to a prominent boulder up on the ridge to gather ourselves and prepare to bail out back down to the lower slopes. The wind was absolutely ripping up here and the summit was looking less and less enticing.

Fun ski though!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Albright Peak

February 6th, 2011

With a springlike day sprouting upon us, we took off for another Big Park Sunday ski tour and decided to go for Albright Peak. Back in late November, we had skied Wimpy's and eyeballed Albright through the storm clouds as a huge north/northeast facing cornice broke off the summit and thundered down a couple thousand feet in front of us. We agreed that staying safe on Wimpy's was a great idea. And we had a spectacular day. But today was shaping up much differently... Lots of sun, minimal wind, warmish temps. It felt like spring and Albright was a go.

The left peak is Albright. The right peak is Wimpy's. We left the Death Canyon winter TH and used the standard approach route up Wimpy's, then over to Albright.

Albright from the summit of Wimpy's around 10,500ft. This is the face that we witnessed the cornice break loose over back in November.

Looking west from the summit of Albright up the upper reaches of Death Canyon. The Death Canyon Shelf and the Teton Crest Trail is visible along the wide horizontal cliff bands in the background. Only five more months before it will be runnable.

Top of Wimpy's from the summit of Albright.

Happiness Level? Pretty close to the top.

Middle Teton

January 30th, 2011

After not making it even close to the summit a few weeks earlier due to blizzard conditions, we saw what appeared to be a better chance for another attempt and decided to give it another go. We left the Bradley Taggart parking lot around 6:15 under clear skies and comfortable temps.

We arrived at the Meadows at 9am and although there was a cold wind blasting down off the peaks, everything was still looking good.

Ascending up to the base of the SW Couloir. The NE flank of the South Teton is in the background.

Just below the SW couloir. It was cold, but we were comfortable. Wispy clouds blew around us creating a veil through which we could see the peaks.

This is looking back at the South Teton from around 11,500ft. The view of the summit was there one second and gone the next.

The crux of the route really isn't much more than a few steps through this pinch towards the top of the couloir. The snow was fairly solid and we had, for the most part, been following the boot steps of the party that had been there in the days prior.

One or two hundred feet below the summit.

Climbing up to the summit. 12,804ft.

First turn on skis after hiking down the majority of the couloir due to the many prevalent rocks. And this turn still had a few.

Skiing the slope out of the SW Couloir and heading down to a point just below the east side of the South Teton/Middle Teton saddle. The surface was hardpack crust up higher, but then turned to frozen marbles in most places down below. The whole upper canyon had been scoured of snow for the most part so we diced our way through the rocks.

This is Disappointment Peak on the east side of the Grand. A few weeks later, we would ski the couloir visible in the right side of the photo here.

Back in the Meadows and heading out of Garnet Canyon. Another amazing day in the mountains.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Sayulita, Mexico

In an effort to catch up on things here (since I'm a month behind still), I'll just let the photos explain the trip. Don't know if I have much more to say anyway...

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Four days later on January 20th...

After having not really been running much over the past couple months (other than sporadic, short, hour-long blips), I put together a few longish runs in a timespan that could actually be considered training in mid-January. I knew I always had my ol'reliable... Mud Lake. Except this time, I had a partner.

Athletes inspire other athletes and this is no exception. Maybe I don't do so much for him, but he certainly is inspiring to watch as he bounds tirelessly through deep snowfields hour after hour. I only wish I could move that fast.

On January 16th, it was back to Big Park Sunday and a return visit to Maverick. The morning began under partially clear skies, but quickly shifted back into the more typical storm conditions we had grown accustomed to so far this winter. As we were the first ones up the route, we had the privilege of breaking trail which made for slightly slower going, but also brought a more solitary experience to our efforts as well having nothing but untouched snowfields for 3,000ft above us as we ascended.
The solitude stopped when we were passed by a group of three following our track, then moving on ahead to break trail in front of us. Strangely, one member of the group chastised us for apparently being what they thought was too safe as we crossed an open, unprotected slope one at a time after they had gone across seperated by about two feet each. Well, to each their own I guess when it comes to safety, but I've never heard anyone scold another for being too safe in the backcountry. Especially when crossing open snowfields one at a time is pretty standard protocol.
The skiing was great. Three 1,200ft laps on Maverick later and we were feeling satisfied for the day. Again.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

The weekend of January 8th/9th finally offered weather conditions we deemed safe and bearable enough for our planned winter camping trial experience. I had camped in snow before, but it hardly constituted winter conditions. Definitely nowhere near the conditions typically present through a night in the Tetons at 9,500ft. But all in all, it went very well. We learned a bit about our gear which proved its worthiness in keeping us warm, fed, and moving. And we learned that overnight trips in the winter backcountry is safely possible. So we could look forward to February's trip in earnest.

Dinner at camp

The low that night was somewhere between 0 and -5. Getting up and getting moving wasn't too difficult, but it definitely felt frigid.