Welcome Back Winter, 2018-19

(Last Updated On: October 17, 2018)

The calendar says it’s still fall. But, around Crested Butte, it’s winter. Some hail, “Oh, winter came early this year!” But they forget that this is normal for us. Winter comes in October most years, with the exception of the last three falls which have been irregularly warm. Admittedly, I’d be okay riding my bike through the end of October without the snow flying. But, I’m always embracing the season we we’re in. And right now, we’re in winter, whether the calendar says so or not.

The skiing… well, our first two days out in the Crested Butte backcountry have been better than almost any day last winter (spring is another story – things got better in spring). We haven’t skied anything spectacularly steep yet, but we sure are having fun milking creamy white powder. It’s good to have winter back.

Pictures.

Day 1.
We dropped in from up high into the middle of a bowl already partially farmed in tracks. Me.
Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Notice the guy hanging out in the middle of the bowl on the right in the picture above? No one we knew – but he happened to have his camera out and snapped these great photos of me. He tracked me down later on social media…
Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte.

In case you couldn’t tell, the powder was spectacular. We noticed our friend Ethan who had cut the smaller tracks on the far left side of the bowl and went up for another lap with him.

Frank.
Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Ethan.
Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Me.
Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Our tracks.
Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Day 2 for Frank.

Ethan.
Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Day 2 for Brittany.

Ethan.
Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Backcountry skiing in Crested Butte

Summary
Welcome Back Winter, 2018-19
Article Name
Welcome Back Winter, 2018-19
Description
The calendar says it's still fall. But, around Crested Butte, it's winter - and the backcountry skiing has been good! Check out our photos!
Author

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 “Welcome Back Winter, 2018-19

  • November 4, 2018 at 10:23 pm
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    Hi! I’m just starting out with backcountry skiing. Mostly just mellow runs on berthoud pass. Been doing a ton of reading on touring and avalanches ect… Could you please walk me through how you decided this was safe terrain to ski?

  • November 8, 2018 at 10:48 pm
    Permalink

    Hi Cullen – Putting things like this in writing is often difficult. We highly recommend you take and avalanche course if you have not already. We also recommend going out in the backcountry with someone experienced with traveling through avalanche terrain. However, to answer your question – we thought it would be on the safe side to ski this slope because there was only one real storm and it came in heavy and ended up light. Having a heavy/dense layer of snow on the bottom without much of a layer underneath helps to set a stable base.

  • November 9, 2018 at 9:25 am
    Permalink

    Cullen,

    To add to what Brittany said, we would also recommend that you read your local avalanche center bulletin on a daily basis, and really try to understand what they’re seeing and the mechanisms that are changing conditions. Even on days when you’re not skiing, this will keep your “head in the game”. Also, keep in mind that when we skied this, it was early October after (for the most part) one storm cycle. That snow has since turned to facets on many aspects, and the most recent storm has been producing a lot of avalanche activity and close calls in much of CO. Currently, it’s time to dial it back a bit…

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