21 March, 2012

Million Dollar Couloir & Rock And Roll

Quite the civilized day, meeting at 7:30 for coffee in Pemberton, chatting with friends at the Mount Currie Coffee Co, skinning through the whiteroom up Cayoosh and floating down two unreal pow runs to finish with more coffee and early enough to relax all evening.  I met up with Christina Lusti, Lars Andrews, and Veronika Vackova for a day cruising around Cayoosh Peak on the Duffey Lake Road.  Our goal was simple, ski powder, and ski the best of the best.  (Photo Left:  Veronika Vackova and Lars Andrews breaking trail through the alpine.)

Overall, the Duffey Lake Road was sunny and clear, but Cayoosh was convective and we skinned through deep blower snow in the trees up into the clouds to the White Room.  Our goal was to head to the Million Dollar Couloir, a classic ski tour I've done in various different conditions, but not in such amazing snow. The snow was perfect.  Light, cold, fluffy, with zero effort to ski through and guaranteed face shots it was hard to deny how good the day was going to be.

Million Dollar Couloir, is a classic in the Cayoosh area, as it gives most ski tourers a great loop, heading up Lazy Boy to the Col below the summit and down the glacier until you gain the ridge dropping you down on the couloir.  The Couloir itself is not the steepest thing you've ever skied, but is primarily sheltered giving it it's million dollar appeal.
(Photo Above:  Lars Andrews dropping into the Million Dollar Couloir)  
Faceshots at every turn off the couloir and even the ridge was a treat.  We had also noticed a large crown line of a size 2.5-3 on the Cayoosh headwall, which had given us something to ponder, and keep this year's variable snowpack in the back of our heads.  We were concerned at first with conditions, playing the terrain and snowpack carefully, but after testing a few slopes it all came together and felt great.

After such a great run, another run was obviously in order.  After deliberation on snowpack and quality runs, the unbelievably amazing Rock And Roll was decided upon.  Rock And Roll, is the 3-4 obvious massive avalanche chutes that come off the ridge of the Marriott Basin, dropping down 700m to the valley.  It is easily one of the best runs on the Duffey Lake Road if conditions are right.  Skiers should note it is susceptible to solar effect, crossloading, sometimes scouring so conditions are sometimes trickier to get the really high quality snow in the chutes.  

(Photo Above:  Talking snow quality for the next run, Rock And Roll in the background)

(Photo Above:  Christina Lusti gettin' her pow on)  Needless to say Rock And Roll was damn good.  A great day, all done in 6 hours with breaks and everyone stoked for more, the decision to ski again tomorrow was an easy one.

1 comment:

  1. That's what you call those chutes of marriot! Yes, very good in the right conditions.

    Nice to get Million with good snow!