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Posts Tagged ‘backcountry skiing’

Get Active ;) this Valentine’s Day

Wednesday, January 28th, 2015

This post comes from TMS Ambassador – Coral Taylor, an avid mountain biker, yogi, snowboarder and outdoor enthusiast living in Truckee, CA. Follow @c_ros on Instagram for rad photos of her adventures around Lake Tahoe and beyond. In addition to getting after it on the snow, Coral is also a Team LUNAChix Tahoe Mountain Bike Team Ambassador!

So, it’s almost Valentine’s Day, and if you want to rail against the Hallmark establishment and write this off as a bogus holiday that encourages consumer spending, blood diamonds, and making singles feel less-than, all the power to you. In that case, consider February 14 to be Lupercalia and howl at the injustice.

However, if you want to celebrate the day with your significant other, there a lot of fun, and free, or inexpensive ideas out there that involve spending time together getting active, not just eating an over-priced dinner at a busy restaurant or buying each other jewelry and cuff links. (Bonus: physical activity and conquering fears lead to increased libido, saving you money on those oysters!)

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Après Snow Yoga

Wednesday, January 21st, 2015
(Photo: Coral Taylor)

(Photo: Coral Taylor)

This post comes from TMS Ambassador – Coral Taylor, an avid mountain biker, yogi, snowboarder and outdoor enthusiast living in Truckee, CA. Follow @c_ros on Instagram for rad photos of her adventures around Lake Tahoe and beyond. In addition to getting after it on the snow, Coral is also a Team LUNAChix Tahoe Mountain Bike Team Ambassador!

Winter is here! And even though the snow is not, per se, “epic”, it’s still fun to get out there and enjoy it! Whether your sport is snowboarding, skiing, XC skiing, snowshoeing, or backcountry exploring, your body and mind will appreciate some post-effort recovery.

After a day (or even a couple hours) of playing in the snow, I like to incorporate a little bit of yoga to help my muscles relax and to release any tension I might have (from dodging tourists on mountain run, making backcountry decisions, and driving to and fro).

I have found the following yoga poses to be beneficial in stretching the key muscles engaged, as well as improving strength, coordination and proprioception.

Dancer aka Lord of the Dance, Natarajasana

Dancer (7)

(Photo: Coral Taylor)

A modified version of this pose will allow you to stretch the quadriceps, the psoas, and work on your balance, without putting too much strain on your back. This is fun to try in the parking lot, once you have your snow boots on (ski boots NOT recommended due to their low coefficient of friction).

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It’s What’s Inside that Counts: Berghaus Jackets

Friday, January 16th, 2015

The name Berghaus is a literal translation of the German for ‘mountain centre’. In 1966, outdoor wear as we know it didn’t really exist. Then Berghaus came along. It all began when climbers and mountaineers Peter Lockey and Gordon Davison from the North East of England, frustrated by what they saw as a lack of decent outdoor gear, decided to import and sell their own. The world of outdoor wear was changing and Berghaus was leading the way. More than 40 years at the forefront of outdoor performance wear and Berghaus is still innovating. Exploring new territories and developing a clothing range that helps climbers do the same, Berghaus continues to lead where others follow.

Pioneered by Berghaus, Hydrodown™ is a revolutionary new take on nature’s greatest insulator.

Whether you’re bedding down on damp ground or climbing in less than perfect conditions, this breakthrough technology from Berghaus keeps you and your kit dry, warm, comfortable and light.

By treating goose down with a durable water repellent (DWR), Berghaus has created a material that resists rain longer, dries quicker, and retains its insulation even when it’s damp. And just like untreated down, it has amazing warmth-to weight ratio which no synthetic alternative has come close to matching.

Developed with extensive input from their athletes, Hydrodown™ technology has been tested in some of the most extreme temperatures all over the globe.

Key features:
Natural down – without the downsides

Just like untreated down, Hydrodown™ is compressible for easy packing, breathable, and has that amazing warmth-to-weight ratio that no synthetic alternative has come close to matching. But it also boasts three amazing attributes that you won’t find in natural goose down:

Repels moisture:
Every cluster of Hydrophobic Down undergoes innovative water-repellent treatment, so it absorbs significantly less water, keeping you dry and your kit light.

Retains loft:
Hydrophobic Down’s specially treated clusters of high fill-power goose down won’t collapse in wet conditions – so it retains its ‘loft’ and keeps you warm.

Recovers fast:
Unlike regular down, which becomes matted and loses insulation when it rains, Hydrodown™ dries out quickly. Tests show that it recovers 80 per cent of its loft, even after three minutes fully immersed in water. So with Hydrodown™ in your kit, you can keep on going – even after a storm.

Developed in the lab and tested in the field by leading athletes, Hydrodown™ has you covered –whatever kind of adventure you live for.

Homepage_hdown

TMS is proud to carry Berghaus clothing for extreme outdoor sports. Check out our selection of Berghaus jackets and Berghaus fleece layers that perform for the best, better than the rest.

RamcheHyperDown

Taking it to New Heights in the Berghaus Ramche Hyper Down Jacket (Photo: Copyright – Berghaus Comunity Blog)

Designed for high altitude conditions, the Ramche Hyper Down Jacket uses a three zone body mapping to best insulate and protect within a wind and water-resistant lightweight shell.

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Ulvetannahybrid-US

Durability and breathability are spotlighted in the rugged warmth and insulation of the Berghaus Ulvetanna Hybrid Jacket, with exceptional protection from even the harshest conditions.

Superior insulation in a flattering style, the Berghaus Scorch Micro Fleece Jacket makes a great mid-layer on the mountain and fashionable outer layer for daily life.

Backcountry Skiing CA’s Eastern Sierra – Book Signing & Slideshow

Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

TMS_BackBook_600

Meet the authors Nate Greenberg and Dan Mingori, get your copy signed and catch an exciting slideshow, presentation and Q+A about “Backcountry Skiing – CA’s Eastern Edition

RSVP to the event on Facebook

Date: Sunday, February 15th

Timing: Event Kickoff | Book Signing: 5:00pm, Presentation and Q+A: 6:15-7:30pm

Location: Tahoe Mountain Sports (11200 Donner Pass Rd. E5, Truckee, CA)

Cost: FREE (Copies of the book will be for sale)

About the Book:

Backcountry Skiing California’s Eastern Sierra 2nd Edition is pretty much the bible of backcountry skiing books for the Sierra Nevada and will keep you glued to the mountains for years. From the back of the book: Blessed with a deep snowpack, sunny skies, and high-elevation peaks, the Eastern Sierra has some of the world’s best backcountry skiing and snowboarding. This expanded and improved second edition covers every major peak and canyon in the range, and describes more than 200 descents, from the moderate bowls of The Sherwins, to the high-alpine exposure of Mt. Whitney, to some of the most extreme skiing challenges in America. Loaded with inspiring color photography, this book is your ticket to a lifetime of adventure

About the authors:

NateBioPhoto

Co-Author – Nate Greenberg

Nate Greenberg has lived in Mammoth Lakes since 2000, and spends as much time as possible skiing and climbing in the endless playground of the Eastern Sierra. Nate is one of the founding members of the Eastern Sierra Avalanche Center, the head judge for Tough Guy Productions’ Telemark Freeskiing competitions, and is supported by Moment Skis and Clif Bar.

DanBioPhoto

Co-Author – Dan Mingori

Dan Mingori is a California based photographer and snowboarder, with a love for all things related to the Eastern Sierra. With a toddler at home, Dan has temporarily forgone the high peaks for the friendlier foothills, as he slowly prepares the next generation to take over his legacy.

Get your copy today!

Arva Backyard Beacon Training

Tuesday, January 13th, 2015

 

TMS_600AvyTrain

“Beacon – check. Training, um, yeah, I know I should …

Join us for the Arva Backyard Beacon training session, sponsored by Arva Snow Safety Equipment. See how your old beacon measures up to current technology, try a new beacon, and most importantly, practice proper search techniques for a solo, and/or multi burial scenarios.

Considering the purchase of an avalanche transceiver?  Good step. Now, take another step forward & join us for a free training session!

When: January 18th, 2015 | 3:00pm to 5:00pm
Where: Tahoe Mountain Sports (11200 Donner Pass Rd. Truckee, CA 96161 –
Cost: FREE, yes free, because we want you to have the opportunity to properly train with your beacon. Bring in your beacon, try a new beacon, compare beacons, and most importantly, practice! The Arva mobile training park will give you a guided opportunity to practice solo and multi-burial scenarios.

This event is being brought to you by Arva Snow Safety Equipment, born and bred in the French Alps since 1987.

Join the event on Facebook HERE.

G3 = Genuine Gear Guide

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

New this year to the fleet of incredible backcountry gear at Tahoe Mountain Sports is a line-up of alpine touring skis, the all-new Ion tech binding as well as climbing skins, trim tools and splitboard climbing skin connector kits. G3 = Genuine Gear Guide. Based in Vancouver, B.C., G3 Genuine Guide Gear is manufacturer of industry-leading gear for backcountry skiing and snowboarding. It has been making avalanche safety equipment since 1995.

G3

TMS employee Boon, took the new G3 Synapse Carbon 92 Skis with the Ion Alpine Touring Bindings out for a day in the Castle Peak backcountry. Click here for more information on this excellent backcountry skiing zone near Truckee, CA. on Here are his thoughts:

“Weighing in at a brisk 9lbs 15oz this set up felt like I was somehow cheating the up hill. Definitely built for speed and fast pursuits but burly enough to ski most any line. I have been looking for a spring/ summer ski for the east side Sierra and volcano corn harvest. This could easily be my go to…

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The G3 Synapse Carbon 92 Skis and G3 Ion Alpine Touring Bindings at Castle Peak

Starting with the brand new G3 Ion Alpine Touring Bindings which did not disappoint. The toe piece is easier to engage than any other tech binding on the market and literally snaps into place giving you confidence that there is a good connection from the binding to the boot. G3 also designed large snow clearing channels on each side of the toe piece to clear out any ice/ snow that could cause a pre-release. The locking mechanism for the toe piece is also much more stout than the other tech bindings. As far as I see it, the ion toe piece is one of the best (if not the best) in the market.

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The G3 Ion Alpine Touring Bindings incorporate game changing forward pressure, wide mount and refined toe jaw dynamics plus unique step-in and brake features yield superior freeride performance in the lightest set up you can ask for

G3 also beat the rest of the tech binding market in designing a binding with forward pressure. The forward pressure assures constant contract with the ski boot heal to maintain consistent release values in landings and absorbs energy/ vibration at high speed. One issue I have with the heal piece is that the design does not allow for turning the heal piece to ski mode with your ski pole. This can be nice to make quicker transitions and avoiding going hip deep in snow on the transition. Overall I was very impressed with the binding and can’t wait to put more mileage on them.

DSCN1260

This set up brings all types of snow conditions together with your skis and bindings like “butter on toast”

The G3 Synapse Carbon 92 Skis as I mentioned above is a very light ski but doesn’t sacrifice performance. With an early rise tip and tail the ski turns on a dime and can rip with the best of the all mountain skis. I see this ski being phenomenal in tight couloirs and during technical descents, but also super fun and easy to negotiate on wide open slopes. The only problem I had with the demo is i was wanting a little bit more length in the ski. The 180cm would be ideal for my height and weight (6′ tall 180 lbs.)

In conclusion, I am stoked on the new technology G3 has brought to the table to progress the tech binding world and also provide a very light high performance ski. Come in and demo or purchase a pair of these skis and bindings at Tahoe Mountain Sports.”

How to Choose the Right Climbing Skin for you:

G3 Alpinist Climbing Skin Features:

G3 Trim Tool
G3 Trim Tool
MSRP: $4.95

Jetforce Avalanche Airbag Backpacks

Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

The world of avalanche safety has become that much cooler in the past few years with the introduction of avalanche airbag backpacks. Tahoe Mountain Sports carries a great selection of these incredible backpacks. In high demand have been the Jetforce Avalanche Airbag Backpacks from POC and Black Diamond. We currently have a VERY LIMITED supply remaining of these packs so take a minute to learn more below and grab yours before they’re GONE!

 Both the POC and Black Diamond Avalanche Airbag Backpacks are similar but have their own nuances and touches to make them unique and suitable to different needs, tastes and sizes.

Thorax11

POC Thorax Jetforce Avalanche Airbag Backpack – 11L

About the POC Thorax Jetforce Avalanche Airbag Backpack – 11L:  Add another tool to your safety gear, especially useful when exploring the backcountry, with this POC Sports Thorax Jetforce Avalanche Airbag Backpack, which adds an 11 liter capacity. The POC Thorax 11L is an avalanche airbag safety backpack which uses JetForce technology. The airbag is activated by pulling an activation cord on the shoulder strap, this then fills the 200L airbag in up to 4 seconds. This should help the skier stay above the snow, after 3 minutes the fan will reverse its motion and deflate the bag giving the skier a potential air pocket when in a buried situation. This will also allow an easier victim extraction when it comes to rescue, if need be. The airbag is made of a durable, puncture resistant Cordura fabric allowing it to maintain volume.

halo28

Black Diamond Halo 28 Jetforce Avalanche Airbag Backpack

About the Black Diamond Halo 28 Jeftforce Avalanche Airbag BackpackAdd another layer of safety to your avalanche tools with the Black Diamond Halo 28 Jetforce Avalanche Airbag Backpack with jet-fan inflation and the ability to be repacked and recharged. The avalanche airbag for day-long tours, featuring backpanel access, a dedicated avy-tools pocket and Black Diamond’s Jetforce Technology. A revolution in airbag technology, Jetforce provides an added margin of safety to your avalanche tool kit. From one-lap dawn patrols to all-day tours and couloir missions, the Black Diamond Halo 28 Jetforce Pack is built to store your essential gear for day-long outings and provides a truly innovative addition to your avalanche tool kit. Jetforce Technology, the result of a multi-year collaboration between Black Diamond and PIEPS, is the first avalanche airbag system to use jet-fan inflation. JetForce’s repackable airbag and fully rechargeable electronics system provide zero-cost user practice and travel-friendly performance. The Halo also features a dedicated avy tools pocket, HiLo helmet holder and single ice-axe attachment for securing your gear. JetForce Technology airbag system built-in; rechargeable, travel-friendly and extremely durable. reACTIV suspension with SwingArm shoulder straps and zippered backpanel access. Dedicated avy-tools pocket and single ice-axe attachment. Tuck-away diagonal ski carry allows airbag to deploy while skis are attached. HiLo helmet holder, hipbelt stash pocket and internal accessory pockets.

saga40

Black Diamond Saga 40 Jetforce Avalanche Airbag Backpack

About the Black Diamond Saga 40 Jetforce Avalanche Airbag Backpack: Designed for ski professionals, the Black Diamond Saga 40 Jetforce Avalanche Airbag Backpack is a high capacity pack with jet fan inflation and on-board avalanche tools. The ideal avalanche airbag for ski patrollers, snow professionals and hut-to-hut trips, the Saga is Black Diamond’s large-capacity backcountry ski pack featuring Jetforce Technology. A revolution in airbag technology, Jetforce provides an added margin of safety to your avalanche tool kit. Whether working in avalanche terrain or covering miles a backcountry hut tour, the Black Diamond Saga 40 Jetforce Pack is designed to accommodate big loads while providing a truly innovative addition to your avalanche tool kit. Jetforce Technology, the result of a multi-year collaboration between Black Diamond and PIEPS, is the first avalanche airbag system to use jet-fan inflation. Jetforce’s repackable airbag and fully rechargeable electronics system provide zero-cost user practice and travel-friendly performance. The Saga accommodates features both ski and snowboard carrying systems, and a dedicated avy tools pocket, ice tool PickPockets and a HiLo helmet holder secure your additional gear. JetForce Technology airbag system built-in; rechargeable, travel-friendly and extremely durable. reACTIV suspension with SwingArm shoulder straps and zippered backpanel access. Dedicated avy-tools pocket and ice-tool PickPockets. Tuck-away diagonal ski carry allows airbag to deploy while skis are attached. HiLo helmet holder, hipbelt stash pocket and zippered top accessory pocket.

 

Now’s The Time To Speak Up About Lake Tahoe Forests

Thursday, August 2nd, 2012

The Snowlands Network, an advocacy group representing “those who venture into the winter backcountry in search of peace and solitude,” recently contact Tahoe Mountain Sports about a revised land management plan the Forest Service is currently drafting for Lake Tahoe. They wanted to let us know that if we want to have any input in this plan — if we want to let the Forest Service know what is important to us about the mountains and woods in our backyard — that now is the time. They are taking comments on this plan, which will influence decisions and land use for the next 15 to 20 years, until Aug. 29.

Here’s what Bob Rowen, vice president for advocacy at Snowlands Network, had to say:

What are your favorite activities in the Lake Tahoe Basin? Would you like the Forest Service to  give more attention to certain issues? Well, now is your time to speak up because they are listening. The Forest Service is revising its management plan for lands in the Lake Tahoe basin. They have circulated a draft revised plan and are taking comments on the draft plan through August 29. This revised land management plan will provide overall direction for management of the forest for the next 15 to 20 years. So it is very important that you speak up now!
You can access and review the draft plan on the Forest Service website. However, you do not need to read the plan to make your voice heard. Simply tell the Forest Service what activities you enjoy in the Tahoe Basin and what activities you would like to see the Forest Service support.

This is OUR forest and OUR government agency.  We urge you to take ownership of the issues by participating in this process.
One issue of concern to the Snowlands Network is the failure of the draft plan to address motorized recreation in winter. Snowmobiles are exempt from most prohibitions against motorized travel and the Forest Service does not propose to change this in the revised plan. Snowmobile use has effectively foreclosed skiers and those on snowshoes from enjoying certain areas of the Basin and this trend continues with more areas at risk of being taken over by snowmobiles. We are asking the Forest Service to include winter motorized travel management in the draft plan and hope you will too.

Other issues of concern include whether the Forest Service will propose (and then manage) additional lands as Wilderness. (Actual Wilderness designation must come from Congress.)  A group of environmental organizations are pressing for more Wilderness designation and have sought to define new Wilderness areas so as to NOT impact existing mountain bike trails — something the Forest Service failed to do in its own “alternatives”.  You might also comment on whether you support additional Wilderness, in particular Wilderness with boundaries drawn that are consistent with existing mountain bike trails.
Comments to the Forest Service may be emailed to:
comments-pacificsouthwest-ltbmu@fs.fed.us

Include “Draft Land Management Plan” in the subject line of your email.
Comments may also be mailed to:
Draft Land Management Plan, 
LTBMU, 
35 College Drive
, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150
Please note: Comments on the draft plan should address overall management direction for the Lake Tahoe lands, rather than particular complaints about specific facilities.

 

Summer Skiing at Mt. Shasta

Wednesday, June 27th, 2012

For this Adventure of the Week, Truckee resident and skier Mike Vaughan writes about an early-summer tradition to summit and ski Mt. Shasta. While the rest of the state is baking in June sunshine, Mt. Shasta still holds perfect corn for thousands of vertical feet.

Who: Aaron Breitbard, John Riina, Mike Vaughan

What: Climbing, summiting, and skiing the Hotlum-Wintun Route from the Brewer Creek Trailhead.

Where: East side of Mt. Shasta.

When: Sunday June 16

Gear: backcountry ski gear, ice axe, crampons

First rays of morning sun hit the east side of Mt. Shasta

For the past four years, I have been prying myself away from the great early-summer mountain biking around Truckee and North Tahoe to make an annual pilgrimage north for one last ski. The east side of mount Shasta provides a sustained corn run of close to 7,000 vertical feet. Alright, it’s generally not perfect corn the whole way — but when timed well, it’s an awesome ski considering it’s summertime in California.
The road to Brewer Creek Trailhead is not plowed and generally melts out sometime in June or July. Last year, I couldn’t quite drive to the trailhead when I skied it on July 30. This year we drove straight up to the trailhead on Saturday night, June 16th.
The forecast low on Saturday night was 39 degrees at 12,500 feet, and the forecast high in Redding for Sunday was 104. An early start was definitely in order. Many people choose to take two days, but we opted for the 24-hour turnaround. Camped at the trailhead Saturday night, making coffee by 3:30 am, and hiking shortly after  4:30. Just after 5 am we were on snow skinning.
One great thing about the east side of Shasta, as opposed to the more popular Bunny Flat Trailhead on the southwest side, is the fact that you can see the summit shortly after starting your hike and you get to watch an amazing sunrise. (If you miss the sunrise, you must hike really fast and can afford a late start.)

Skinning up at sunrise

Pat Harwood hiking up the Hotlum-Wintun Ridge, 2009

Snow was soft, due to the non-freezing temps overnight and we were able to skin to about 12,000 feet. From there it’s skis off, crampons on, and ideally ice axe in hand. We summited (14,179 feet) shortly after 10 am. We were met there by a steady stream of people hiking up Avalanche Gulch from Bunny Flat and Lake Helen. On a busy Sunday, 100 people might summit from the southwest side of the mountain, many with guides, and most without skis or boards. There were about 20 people climbing the east side of the mountain, all with skis or boards.

 

After some time hanging out on the summit we dropped in around 11 am. When skiing the east side, you can literally put your skis on 15 feet below the summit and drop in to the true east face above the Wintun Glacier. It’s about 45-degrees at the top, and remains relatively steep for 3,000 to 4,000 vert. The snow on this whole pitch was perfect corn. Then we traversed left to the lower portion of the Hotlum-Wintun Ridge we hiked up earlier. More good skiing, followed by some very sticky skiing, dirt skiing, and ultimately some dirt walking. Beers at the car shortly after noon.

Pat Harwood shredding down the Wintun Glacier, past a group of jealous hikers, 2009.

In the years I have been skiing this route I have encountered boiler-plate re-frozen snow, all-time corn, painfully sticky snow, a little pow, and large sun cups. All in all though, the east side of Mt. Shasta has never failed to produce an awesome day of skiing to wrap up the season.

 

The east side of Mt. Shasta, from the road to Brewer Creek, June 2009

Black Diamond Neve Pro Crampons
Black Diamond Neve Pro Crampons
MSRP: $159.95
Pieps DSP Avalanche Beacon
Pieps DSP Avalanche Beacon
MSRP: $449.95

Tioga Pass Opening Weekend – April 2012

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

This Adventure of the Week comes from TMS owner, Dave, who ventured down to the Eastern Sierra to salvage this crazy, low-snow season for some high elevation, alpine fun!

Who: Dave, Andy from Sierra Descents, Zach, Sara and Molly the dog

What: Backcountry spring skiing

Where: Tioga Pass Road, the Eastern Gateway to Yosemite National Park

Gear: Deuter Guide 45 Pack, Black Diamond crampons and ice axe, Sol Sunscreen, Mammut Gobi Hat and so much more……..

Caltrans doesn’t take a big liking to skiers I don’t think, but when fishing season is due to open, you can rest assured that means most of the roads on the Eastern Sierra are going to try and open. And luck just has it that every year, the fishing opener coincides with some of the best spring skiing the country has to offer. Yup, right in our own backyard, the Eastern Sierra is a spring skiing mecca, and when the roads open up to 9,000 ft+, you can’t really go wrong.

View of False White from the parking area on Hwy 120

View of False White from the parking area on Hwy 120

Being a horrible snow year in this part of the Sierra, we were quickly turned around from a lower route on Mt. Koip due to miles of hiking that would have had to be done on dirt, and instead opted for the snow start and end. We parked at the intersection of Saddlebag Lake Rd and Hwy 120 both days. False White is a pretty easy and straightforward 2.5–3 hour climb from this parking area. Saturday was super warm with almost no wind, so we opted to explore a bit as the regular descent (southeast face) was a bit mushy already. Instead, we headed to this notch we spotted that would drop us on the north side into the Skeleton Lakes Basin.

The shoulder on False White by which we accessed the North Bowls

The shoulder on False White by which we accessed the North Bowls

This proved to be a great choice as the skiing stayed wintery over there and gave us an extra long tour to get out. We were still off the snow by 2pm as the warming was getting extreme and the snow was turning quickly. Our views and ideas just as quickly turned to Sunday and the idea to bag one of the couloirs on Mt. Conness.

For Sunday, Andy from Sierra Descents and Sara (Zach’s wife) met up with us for what was sure to be an epic. I had never traveled in the winter back to Saddlebag Lake and Conness in particular so I was extremely excited to see this new terrain and ski some of the best stuff we could find.  We started at 6:30am to ensure the midday heat would not be as much of a problem as it was on Saturday and headed out towards Saddlebag Lake. Once rounding Saddlebag, getting overtaken by some super fast and crazy backcountry Nordic skiers (see this photo album), we pushed on to the Conness Glacier and eventually the Y-couloirs on another route to the ridge.

The Conness Basin as seen once rounding Saddlebag Lake

The Conness Basin as seen once rounding Saddlebag Lake

It took about 4ish hours to reach the base of the Y-Couloirs and based on the look of them and the possible bergshrunds that we could see in the shorter, Summit Couloirs, we decided this was the way to go. Crampons and axes out, we headed up. Andy lead the first half and then I took over for the second on some pretty steep and exposed terrain; we sure were happy to have those crampons on. After about an hour in the chute, we pulled up and over and were on the ridge with a view out into the rest of the Sierra that can’t be beat.

Sierra PanoramicThe snow in the chute was perfect, edgeable and carveable with even a little pow thrown in for fun. And then, the way out was just perfect soft, corn snow and we were able to kick and glide our way back to the car without donning skins again. This video from Andy at Sierra Descents pretty much sums it up. Can’t wait to get out there again!

See the rest of the pictures from this Tioga Pass skiing trip on our Facebook Album.

Black Diamond Raven Ultra Ice Axe
Black Diamond Raven Ultra Ice Axe
MSRP: $109.95

The Tahoe Mountain Sports Adventure of the Week blog series takes a walk, hike, bike, or Eastern Sierra backcountry ski trip in someone else’s shoes, from pro athletes to local Tahoe adventurers. Let us know if you’ve got an adventure to share.

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