After summiting Pyramid and Crescent earlier in the year, and discovering breathtaking lines present on Marshall Mountain, nestled between the two, we had high hopes of scouting the peak and riding some of the lines off its most northern aspect. Forecast were calling for a decent day for the attempt but the weather was horrendous all day. The mountains were socked in all day with a steady wind bringing temperatures into the negative territory. Navigation was challenging with a new area and no points of reference as well but we decided to push on.
|The peak briefly exposes itself|
|Nearing the summit|
We continued on a sub ridge to the summit with winds and snow depth increasing with every step. At some points the snow was close to knee deep. On the low angle slope the snow was cracking under our steps reassuring us that we would not be riding steeper terrain this day. We eventually made the summit as it came in and out of view through the clouds screaming by. It was cold. We sat and waited until there was no feeling left in our bodies hoping to catch a glimpse of the surrounding areas. Nothing materialized so we decided to ride the two feet of cold smoke on the ascension ridge.
The ridge was of mellow pitch but the snow was so light we were able to ride 2-feet of fresh snow like it was 8-inches. Carving turns, loosing sight, feeling the snow come up over our thighs into our face was about as good as a consolation prize gets.
It was so good we figured we would do a second lap expecting our skin track to still be intact. It however was not as the winds were quickly transporting snow that day. Another quick push to the top and we were treated to a 3500 foot run nearly all the way back to the sleds with fun snow and a great fall line the entire way. There is something magical about finding tours where you can get runs like this all the way out to your sled, cutting out what can sometimes be a demoralizing egress without one.
|Peak exposes itself on the second lap|
|Scouting the abyss|
While the tour was not a success by the initial objective, it was still a massive success to summit and figure out the access. This will set us up for an amazing return trip, if we get a clear day in the near future.