(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.
Looking toward Queen Basin and Mini-Queen Basin. The high peak is White Rock.
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 😉
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 🙂
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 🙂
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.
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 🙂