TR: Mt. Baldy solo (15 June 2010)

(Last Updated On: June 17, 2010)

Sunday’s ski on Grizzly was so incredibly good I couldn’t help but go back for more. Sadly, I couldn’t get anyone to join me. It seems that everyone has given up on skiing. But, I haven’t 🙂 I chose to head out to Mt. Baldy, hoping to ski something on the west side- easy to access and fairly mellow terrain- exactly what I was looking for, especially for this solo ski.

I headed up Washington Gulch Road and was able to make it nearly to the base of the SE face of Baldy, but I couldn’t make it all the way due to a snowdrift. So, I parked there, and began walking around 6:45 am. Baldy in the distance.
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The sun sent rays of joy my way.
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The night had provided a very solid freeze. Even the dirt was frozen. As I plodded along, I couldn’t help but notice the ice crystals that had formed in the dirt. Dirt-ice. Amazing.
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Dirt quickly turned to snow. I was following along the SE ridge.
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Shadow, my partner for the day.
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Every now and then I see clear evidence that we aren’t the only beings on Earth that play in the snow 🙂
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The ridge provided spectacular views. Owen and Purple Peak.
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Mineral Point with Augusta behind.
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Purple Mountain (not to be confused with the aforementioned Purple Peak).
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Yule pass with the drier, but still beautiful, peaks on the other side.
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Treasury.
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Siberia, Capitol, Snowmass, Hagarman.
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Looking toward Queen Basin and Mini-Queen Basin. The high peak is White Rock.
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The Baldy ridge continued, but due to time-restraints, I decided to stop here.
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Other Baldy options on the West side.
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My first run was on the West side. 1300 vertical feet of nice smooth carvable snow. Excellent 🙂 A look back at what I skied off the West side.
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Another view of the West side.
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From the bottom of the West side I had a choice- either wrap around to the south and hit the road back, which worked it’s way around the mountain OR head back up the west side and ski the southeast face, near my original ascent route. I chose the ski rather than the road. It was only 9:30 and I still had plenty of time. The temperatures were still cool and the snow was holding up nicely. Besides, skiing is always better than walking on a road 😉

So, I began the skin with Shadow.
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I enjoyed the sparkling white snow. With our “dust layer” (or layers, I should say) the “white” factor has been missing in our snow since April.
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Again, I enjoyed fantastic views. Richmond.
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The beautiful valley of Crested Butte.
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Gothic, the obscure north side.
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I skinned up the west side for about an hour to the point on the ridge where I began my ski before. But, this time, I skied down the other side of the ridge on the southeast face. The snow was softer than the west side, since it had been hit by the sun for a longer period of time. It was a silky smooth run, but laden with hidden rocks just beneath the surface. Within a few turns, I realized that most of the snow I was skiing on was actually from last weekends snowstorm. Little of it was “old snow”, so it was shallow. Still, it was a fun run all the same- about 1000 vert 🙂

Looking back at the lower portion of my line. I skied until the snow ran out!
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I took this solo tour as an opportunity to experiment with our new Go Pro helmet cam, catching both the west side and southeast face skis. Check it out- you might find some of the commentary entertaining 🙂

Baldy Ski 15June2010 from 14erskiers on Vimeo.

On my way out, I caught one last glimpse of Baldy. This shows the southeast face. I ascended on the ridge to the left, skied down the backside (out of view), ascended back up to the ridge, and then back down this face.
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I returned to the car around 11:45, only 5 hours after leaving, and I was taking my sweet time dinking around with the helmet cam and taking lots of photos. Not bad for a 2300 vert day 🙂




Brittany Walker Konsella

Aside from skiing, biking, and all outdoorsy things,Brittany Walker Konsella also loves smiles and chocolate 🙂 Even though she excels at higher level math and chemistry, she still confuses left from right. Find out more about Brittany!

Latest posts by Brittany Walker Konsella (see all)

Brittany Walker Konsella

Aside from skiing, biking, and all outdoorsy things, Brittany Walker Konsella also loves smiles and chocolate :) Even though she excels at higher level math and chemistry, she still confuses left from right. Find out more about Brittany!

3 thoughts on “TR: Mt. Baldy solo (15 June 2010)

  • June 18, 2010 at 11:49 pm
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    Not bad at all for June 15!

  • June 19, 2010 at 8:20 am
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    wish I coulda gone, way to go Frank

  • June 21, 2010 at 10:49 pm
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    Uhh, Craig… That was Brittany flying solo… 🙂

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