15
Mar

I have been thinking a lot about all of the ski related deaths this season and keep coming back to what might be the most valuable thing I learned from one of my best bros, Dale Boehm, the value of low angle.


the video below is from yesterday hitting some of the typical low angle terrain that can be found at and around the Summit at Snoqualmie during high avy conditons.


I was lucky to have spent 4 to 5 days a week and/or 10,000 vert per week ski touring for 5 seasons with such an amazing ski mountaineer. Not only is Dale solid in surviving the BIG mountains any time of the year. He happens to be one of the best skiers in ANY condition that I have had the pleasure to ski with anywhere. Dale reminds me of Glen Plake in the way that they both can have just as much fun skiing on a green dot as a triple diamond that’s so steep and exposed it gets the rocks off. Dale and I ski toured no matter what the avy conditons were because we would find a low angle zone that was protected. Once in the zone (and back then being on old fat skis at 88 under foot) we would set the super easy skin track up a 500′ to 1,000′ old growth slope, slogging and floundering the entire way. Second lap you seem to get energy just because your mind can now float as your skis do on the twice packed track from lap 1. Next thing you know, 3,000 vert was just knocked out w/ fuel still in the tank to get back to the barn. The low angle zones also work well for those days w/ 6 to 8 inches of blower on PNW hard pack, especially w/ the fat rockered skis that can give you a bottomless ski much sooner than your traditional “ski mountaineering” 99 underfoot boards. I don’t know about you guys but I’ll take the low angle bottomless any day over the inbounds double diamonds that have 6 inches on a frozen rain layer, which makes you think about that swix sharpening/tuning kit you have been meaning to purchase. Bottom line, L2sad (Live to Ski Another Day) when walking down those frozen steps at your house, driving on the wild streets, and most of all, as we do what we all seem to be living for… The perfect ride!


below you can see an 8 to 10 inch slab that was a point release triggered by the tree above unloading.

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