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Inspirational?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 

So I just got back from my ski sabbatical in CO, basically ran around doing every EX run at all of the Vail Resorts ski areas alongside Steamboat, Aspen, and Tellruide. Only thing I chickened out of was at Breck - Martini Bowl (my name for it, technically one of the Lake Chutes). 

 

I am still having dreams of this cliff drop whereas all of my conquests have faded. Landing area was a steep vertical with soft fluffy snow and few sharks; I ran the Chute via a smaller 10ft drop in on the right (under the camera), which is where the all the tracks lead in from. I estimated it was a 40 foot drop. Any takers on this?

 

Am I just yeller or is it survival instincts? Am I the only one who dreams of Epic Ski Challenges like this?

 

 

 

 

 

post #2 of 21
Just standing near the top of it for your second picture gets gnar points from me:-) But this is a teaser, tell us about the rest of your trip with pros, cons, lessons learned, and more pics??
post #3 of 21

No.F'n.Way!nonono2.gif

 

Did anybody else drop that while you were standing there?

post #4 of 21

I'll pass. I prefer to know what I'm landing on.

But more power to you--wear a GoPro.

post #5 of 21

Wow that cornice rarely gets that vertical or that high. That area where you see some tracks dropping is where most people enter although it's usually more of a traverse in, hard to tell how it is from the shot. I don't think I have evr seen anyone in person drop that particular cornice in person.  There are actually a couple gnarlier lines that you passed to get to that chute.

 

Not mention that is really low snow for that chute a lot more of the rocks on skiers right are usually covered.

post #6 of 21

I've only seen two folk go down Elevator Chute (at least that's my understanding of the name of that cornice).  It's a major (50'+) drop to a slope (where you see the lines -- that's called Zoot Chute and the entrance is a small cornice entry to the lookers right) that is pretty steep at that point, probably about 40-45 degrees.  It's usually pretty big, but may be larger now due to the significant wind load we've received in the past few weeks.

 

I've not skied at Breck for a couple of weeks, but the cornices at Copper were pretty large this weekend.  There was really tasty windload right under those cornices.  Of course, you need to be careful that the windload has not been so significant during the day that a cornice fall might arise.  Given the amount of new snow and the wind load, that's a realistic concern on some of these aspects...

 

Mike

post #7 of 21

I have done stuff a half to 3/4 that size before but that big.

 

If you going to do just turn off your brain and use big skis.  the cornice at snowbird can get to be half that size on the cirque. .

post #8 of 21
umm hmmm 

Edited by pdiddy - 3/27/13 at 2:33am
post #9 of 21
Thread Starter 
I never did the big cornice, keep having dreams about it though - like I said, only thing I chickened out of doing. I will have to attempt next year, I do actually carry around a pair of wides (Lotus DPS 120s) that I run for big drops like that. The mini-bowl at the bottom of that drop collects alot of snow and has the ability to go upslope after the drop, then turn back into the chute.
Basically it offers a passive brake to burn velocity (versus an active parallel stop for example) to help stay in control.
 
I did not visually see anyone drop that cornice but when I got to the bottom of the mini bowl and looked up, there was one set of tracks that appeared right where you would land, with the correct direction. Someone out there did it, probably better than me though lol.
 
Knowing what you're landing on was very easy in this case as there is a lighter drop or traverse in on one side, so I was able to test the snow at the landing area and run the chute after. It had the right mix of give and take to support a landing; there were rocks in one area, but clearly visible. I tested the rest of the bowl - solid heavy snow.
 
As far as what I learned, I spent about 5 days running these chutes at Breck and became really good at dropping chutes :P A-Basin was a breeze after this lol. I ran all of the chutes en route to that mini-bowl/chute multiple times. The hard part is getting up there though, you have to climb up a hill and its at 13k feet - no matter how good of a shape you are in, oxygen is a problem due to the altitude. I learned to carry a small plastic oxygen bottle with me for any steep hikes that high up.
 
Zoot Chute? Prefer Big Sky personally lol, alot of air on that drop! 
 

 

post #10 of 21

I say go back up there and just pole whack the hell out of it until it's only a 20 footer.  wink.gif

post #11 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayT View Post

I say go back up there and just pole whack the hell out of it until it's only a 20 footer.  wink.gif

 

That is good advice right there. LOL. 

 

To the O.P., I generally tell people to push their comfort zone a little every so often while skiing, it generally makes you better. However a 50' drop to 40 ish degree slope is not something you want to mess around with, unless you are very comfortable in the air and landing that kind of stuff, a gust of wind while in the air is a game changer. The drop requires a lot of practice and a lot skill, not something you just waltz up to and drop, there is one set of tracks dropping it for a very good reason, messing up is going to hurt. I mean any idiot can go up there and fall off the cornice and get hauled away by the patrol, I think you showed good judgement, there is no shame in not dropping it. 

post #12 of 21

Three seasons ago at Monarch I hucked a cornice into Mirkwood Bowl.  It was a mid-week 1'+ powder day and I was the first one up. It looked like a solid 8-10' cornice onto a steep (45-50 degree slope) and so I backed up and got a good running start. By my estimates, I held my form together for a solid half second followed by several seconds of furiously "rolling up the windows." When I finally hit, the snow was so deep that I did a full submarine under the snow and came to a stop on my second turn since I couldn't see and, more importantly, I couldn't breathe.

 

That's a good list of places to visit with the exception of vail. I've done Lovers Leap many times. It's meh and the resort terrain is flat compared to the others on your list. How was Highlands Bowl.

post #13 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ske-Bum View Post

That is good advice right there. LOL. 

To the O.P., I generally tell people to push their comfort zone a little every so often while skiing, it generally makes you better. However a 50' drop to 40 ish degree slope is not something you want to mess around with, unless you are very comfortable in the air and landing that kind of stuff, a gust of wind while in the air is a game changer. The drop requires a lot of practice and a lot skill, not something you just waltz up to and drop, there is one set of tracks dropping it for a very good reason, messing up is going to hurt. I mean any idiot can go up there and fall off the cornice and get hauled away by the patrol, I think you showed good judgement, there is no shame in not dropping it. 

It's one thing to drop a50 footer into soft uncompacted snow and quite another to drop into firm compacted snow. The issue with this drop is that you are landing in the middle of the most heavily skied line in the Lake Chutes. While the line looks daunting because of the cornice at the top, the chute is the least steep line down, has a relatively mellow entrance skiers left and has the fewest consequences of a crash, so tons of traffic compacts the snow.

Mike
post #14 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by habacomike View Post


It's one thing to drop a50 footer into soft uncompacted snow and quite another to drop into firm compacted snow. The issue with this drop is that you are landing in the middle of the most heavily skied line in the Lake Chutes. While the line looks daunting because of the cornice at the top, the chute is the least steep line down, has a relatively mellow entrance skiers left and has the fewest consequences of a crash, so tons of traffic compacts the snow.

Mike

I love a firm landing when catching big air, hissyfit.gif

post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdiddy View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by habacomike View Post


It's one thing to drop a50 footer into soft uncompacted snow and quite another to drop into firm compacted snow. The issue with this drop is that you are landing in the middle of the most heavily skied line in the Lake Chutes. While the line looks daunting because of the cornice at the top, the chute is the least steep line down, has a relatively mellow entrance skiers left and has the fewest consequences of a crash, so tons of traffic compacts the snow.

Mike

I love a firm landing when catching big air, hissyfit.gif


Is that ever famous yard sale event?

post #16 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by slider View Post


Is that ever famous yard sale event?

Yep a regular blow out,     blow out the knees, hips, ankles, back, jaw.........  

post #17 of 21

Skiing the Elevator!

post #18 of 21
From what I gather there are only a few locals at Breck that have the sac to take that cornice. Power to them, especially this season (in Feb.) with the low snow totals, a lot of exposure. It is a great experience though skiing the lake chutes. I totally agree that one needs to push beyond your comfort zone every now and then in order to improve your skills. Not sure if I have any 50 footers in my future though?
post #19 of 21

That 2nd pic is 2-3X corbetts at least. I'm sure all the yahoos on here will have no problem taking it on.

Were it 1/2 that on a deep powder day I might try it.

Wait a minute,,,sorry...there are no yahoos on EPIC SKI.

post #20 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smushie View Post

Three seasons ago at Monarch I hucked a cornice into Mirkwood Bowl.  It was a mid-week 1'+ powder day and I was the first one up. It looked like a solid 8-10' cornice onto a steep (45-50 degree slope) and so I backed up and got a good running start. By my estimates, I held my form together for a solid half second followed by several seconds of furiously "rolling up the windows." When I finally hit, the snow was so deep that I did a full submarine under the snow and came to a stop on my second turn since I couldn't see and, more importantly, I couldn't breathe.

 

I love that cornice- its just tall enough that it usually means the landing is untracked.

 

My personal favorite way of screwing it up is skiing into it too slowly (fear factor) and having it break on me.  It was about 15' tall that season, and when it broke my skis flipped into the air and I fell straight down into the bowl on my back, hit, then bounced out and forward back onto the skis. I skied it out without too much more fanfare.

post #21 of 21

Skied that hill 2 weeks ago with Mastersracer.  We went past the cornice and down through the rocky chute. I crashed lightly just after getting out of the rocks.  One ski went to the bottom and onto or very close to the frozen lake.  Fun run with very little hike.

 

MR on his way down.  It is steeper than it looks.  The cornice was not very skiable as the landing was ice.

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