Tuesday, January 27, 2009

UAE - Nambe Chutes, Santa Fe

Un-Official AAS Event: - 1/25/09

I just wanted to share a few cool photos of me and 2 other BC Ski nuts in the Nambe Chutes bowl above the Santa Fe ski area last Sunday. I still can't believe how wintery is was up there! We have had no new snow in about 2 weeks and it was so warm at my house on Saturday, I had to remove my sweat shirt while changing my oil.

On arrival at the SF ski area Sunday, it was about 26deg with little wind. I made my now favorite purchase of an $18.00 2 ride ticket and headed up to the very top with Joel and John. (I met them both while trolling for BC partners on a local BC ski forum, yes disgusting I know...)

We were greeted by about 6in. of rime on the entire top of the mountain. There was about 8 to 10in. of new snow and rime that had blown into the bowl.
We dug a quick pit and all decided it was stable and we agreed to do a run one-at-a-time hiding behind rock outcroppings to check it out. We helped ourselves to a steep descent into a widening 30 to 40deg. couloir first. Here's me ripping it up and trying not to over-cook it!

We had a quick snack at the bottom and started the skin/climb back up. The snow was too soft in areas and left us swimming back up a 35deg. slope in waist deep snow... not fun at times ;-) For our second run we chose a wider run and let'er rip! The conditions were indeed stable with about 6 t0 8in. of good snow on top.

Here's Joel at the top of the chutes area proper (no it's not Alaska, it's Santa Fe, man I love this state)

Here's a great shot taken by John of me and Joel climbing out with Snow Science data added for perspective.

We were going to return via the Winsor trail after another run, but as I was getting sick all week I was really feeling tired (as I told my partners, my "Inner Man" was asleep on the couch) So we did the right thing and pulled the plug and traversed the ridge exploring more opportunities for next time. The sun was baking the south facing slopes we used to descend back into the ski area. I fell at least 3 times and got stuck in tree wells because I was getting so fried... After a beer at the mid-way bar we finished the run and I treated my friends to a crash under the beginner lift on the bunny slope because I couldn't even keep an edge any longer! Awesome!

That effort was enough to kick my cold into high gear and today I'm home sick for the second day in a row........ but I'm still grinning like a fool.


danmcq said...

sweet dude, sorry i missed it, but we had company

danmcq said...

sweet dude, sorry i missed it, but we had company