>http://www.youtube.com/get_playerRick, Dean and I pushed into Long Canyon in the Lemhis today for more exploration of it’s potential( for a perspective of our ski, check out the banner photo at the top of the blog home page, it is the obvious gully and slope on the north face).
Rick towed us in on his snowmobile under sunny skies but we still had to work hard to gain the skiable terrain, sloggging up through seemingly bottomless faceted snow that sank the lead skinner up to his knees with each stride. We entered the west lobe of the northern bowl complex at about 9000′ and saw cliffs, couloirs and aprons of snow spread upward before us.
As we skinned up, we strayed too close to a rock band that held a pocket of wind deposited slab that cut loose as Rick broke trail through it. He took a 100-150′ ride but it settled out and he quickly found his gear and rejoined us. After an evaluation of the snow stability we proceeded to about 9500′ and skied a clean line down.
The lessons we learned from this experience: our mistake, don’t get to close to a weakness in the slab (the rock band and a steepening in the slope angle), but use prudent travel techniques(one at a time and safe terrain below) to minimize the danger. As the say, “All’s well that ends well.”