(Last Updated On: June 5, 2014)
The East Face of St. John isn’t one of the lines that sticks out to skiers as that gaze upon the Teton Range. The Skillet on Mt. Moran, or Teewinot, or Buck, or even the Grand Teton itself tend to taunt the dreams of backcountry skiers. But, we needed something “short” as we had to head home later in the afternoon. And the East Face of Mt. St. John began to look particularly appealing for a morning outing in the Tetons.
The East Face of Mt. St. John. Towering over 4000-feet above the valley floor, this line is not to be undervalued.
We began in the dark with headlamps from the String Lake trailhead, winding around the lake before reaching the lower flanks of St. John. As we ascended through the area that had been stricken by a forest fire in 1999, the sun began to peak over the the eastern landscape.
Frank by the hidden Laurel Lake.
The rising sun highlighted our surroundings in rose colors for only a few moments.
And the climb went on.
Finally, we reached the top of our line, which is still a few hundred feet short of the westward summit.
The Cathedral Group, which consists of Teewinot, Owen, and the Grand.
After a brief break on the top of our line, it was time to ski. Frank skiing off the face of the Earth…..
The skiing was GOOD. Frank with Jackson Lake and Leigh Lake in the distance.
Brittany with Jenny Lake behind.
It was hard to take a bad picture.
Brittany lower down on the face.
As we descended the trees thickened. Brittany.
We skied all the way to String Lake, a little over 4000-vertical feet and spent about 20 minutes walking back to the parking lot. Not bad for a morning mission before a 10 hour drive home. A great ski, this the East Face of Mt. St. John was a great way to end our short trip to the Tetons
We came to the Tetons over Memorial Day weekend to escape a storm that would have prevented us from being able to ski in the alpine. Although we didn’t have the opportunity to ski the bigger lines on our Teton list, we were still pleased to have another fabulous taste of the Tetons. We will definitely be back 🙂