2021-2022 Ski Season Highlight Video

This was a tough video to make. So many awesome clips from the 2021-2022 ski season to choose from! Some of the clips feature pow on Mount Baldy, East Castle, backcountry skiing, Main Chute (Mount Baldy), Perlas, High Boy (Alf’s High Rustler), Jitter Bug, Stone Crusher, Gunsight, Deseret Peak’s Twin Couloirs and more.

Skied Alta’s Main Chute, one of the Baldy Chutes

Baldy Chutes - Main Chute
Entering the portal in 3, 2, 1…

What a thrilling day it was for me to record my third time “down” the Main Chute in the Baldy Chutes at Alta Ski Area a couple of weeks ago. I say “down” because I’ve only technically skied it twice as the first time I attempted it I fell 1,100 feet from the top to the bottom.

This time around was a nice spring day with mostly soft snow conditions, though some parts of the chute were icy. This was certainly my best run at it. I was in the most control, most relaxed (if that’s possible) and best turns. The first time I hit it after my fall I was terrified and was simply trying to get down it without getting hurt.

I was happy to take my buddy Mike there for his first time. As can be expected, he was psyched out at first. It is visually intimidating at the first. But after watching a couple of other skiers do it, he got up the will and did it without incident. Nice job Mike!

Slushy but fantastic day in the backcountry

Hard to put into words how rewarding and challenging climbing up a mountain and skiing down it is, not to mention the scenery. In today’s case it was very heavy slush; 52 degrees. It’s hard to turn in slush. No quick or tight turns. Have to make wide or better yet, no turns. Difficult to score style points in these conditions! I must be getting mushy because I can sense each day I get out and ski may be the real-deal last for the season.  The snow is melting fast.

NBD (New Boot Day) – Technica Zero G Tour Pro

I’ve been suffering bad blisters on my old Technica Cochise 130 touring boots.  I tried everything to resolve the blisters from tweaking/molding the liners, Squirrel’s Nut Butter, athletic tape, moleskin… None of those things addressed the problem, which was that the boots were too big. I finally did it right, and got some new boots completely fitted, molded, orthotic-ed (just made that word up), and every possible customization and adaptation to my feet possible.  I have faith in Technical and that’s one reason why I chose them again with the Zero G Tour Pro. That at the fitter said these boots are the best of the best.

Above: note the alternate buckle. Interesting.

This walk/ski mechanism above is very hot right now.

I’ve done one tour with them so far, then the snow melted.  The tour was a success.  No blisters on the achilles.  I had a little bit of rubbing on the right ankle bone, but I think I need to change socks to a less abrasive pair.

I felt great in ski mode. My feet and my skis were connected. My foot wasn’t floating around in the boot.  My toes didn’t go numb either, which was another issue I had.

This is way too early to come to a conclusion and I may need another tweak or two to the boots, but they’re already a huge improvement.

The Lesson

Do it right the first time.  Get the right boot.  Get the right size. Get fitted by a pro.

Point Supreme – First Lengthy Skinning Session of the Season

My buddy Michael and I did our first substantial skinning session of the 2020-2021 season today.  We started up the Summer Road at Alta and went up near Catherine Pass to Point Supreme.  We went nearly to the very top but it was very thin and dangerous up there so we didn’t go the last couple hundred yards. Here’s a little body cam video from Point Supreme.

I’m thrilled to say that all the mountain biking this summer has really made a huge difference in my fitness and ability to take on vertical like this at over 10,000 feet.  Unfortunately I had the wrong socks, and my touring boots are not fitted well and I ended up with nasty blisters on both feet. That needs to be resolved.

2nd backcountry ski session of 2020-2021

Did my 2nd backcountry tour of the season after work today.  These after work sessions are fun, but I don’t have a lot of time.  Between getting there and getting the gear on and such, I have about an hour or so of climbing I can do before I have to transition to downhill skiing before dark.  Still good to get out. I got up to the top of Albion and by then it was getting dark and very cold.

On the way up I saw my friend Snuggles, the porcupine!

First backcountry ski tour of 2020-2021 is in the books

I jealously watched all the pow videos from this past weekend.  I was going to go up, but had no snow tires and the road restriction was in place.  So today after work I drove up to the top of Little Cottonwood Canyon as fast as I could and did my first skinning of the season.  I got about a mile up Grizzly Gulch before it started getting too dark to feel comfortable about safely skiing down.  It was a good warm up.  Lots of snow for this time of year.  Hopefully that means we are in for a great season.

On the way back down I was treated to a fantastic sunset. At that point I thought to myself, “I need to do more evening tours!”

2019-2020 Ski Season Ends With Epic Hike and Ski at Gunsight

Had a fantastic adventure hiking up to the top of Gunsight at Alta today. I’ve now skied in 10 straight months. This has been the most epic ski season EVER. Skied every run at Alta in one season, and bagged many bucket list lines I’ve only fantasized about. Made it through the season with no injuries despite skiing in many ultra-expert and dangerous places. In fact, I only crashed and released a ski once all season. Sadly, I think today is the day I shut it down until next ski season.