>My friends Mike and Jess invited Anna and myself up to their cabin near Lost Trail Pass for the weekend. Driving up on Thursday night, we got caught on a heavy snow storm outside of Salmon. We made it to their cabin and went to bed with visions of 18″ of new snow the next day.
We awakened Friday to rain. Lots of rain. Undeterred, we drove up the pass away, and eventually the rain turned to wet, heavy snow. We didn’t expect much in the way of powder, and the skin up did nothing to change our outlook. The hill climb was the hardest I’ve had in a long time. We were breaking trail up to our waists at points. We encountered deeply buried rain crust low, and a few whumps on the flat part of the approach got our attention.
We decided to head to a slope we’d skied before. About 25 degrees, heavily treed, with little avalanche danger. The Bitterroot range is experiencing avalanche conditions that are as bad or worse than the Teton’s, so we played it safe. Higher up the slope, the rain crust disappeared, and we skied in some of the best powder I’ve skied in years! Mid-thigh, light as a feather.
Saturday we woke to temperatures around zero. We skied the lifts at Lost Trail Pass Saturday and nearly froze our butts off. The weird winter weather continues.
As a side note, Mike skied Teton Pass last Wednesday. He said the slides were the worst he’d ever seen. Every slide zone on Taylor had slid. Superbowl and Oliver had slid too.