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Loveland pass ?s

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I agreed to go skiing with a couple of the guys I work with tomorrow. I am a little apprehensive about it because they want to ski loveland pass and I am thinking the pass will be closed by the road dept. as we will be getting lots of snow. Does anyone have experience with this? Will the road dept. make us leave the area when they get ready to close the road? Most importantly, how is the terrain? I've never skied there and would appreciate any info I could get on snow coverage. I already had one core shot this year and want to avoid a repeat. I am a little perplexed, as I would think the logical choice would be A-Basin, I mean why jerk around shuttling people up the road in a car when you could nail twice the vert with a lift. I was told that if they close the road we will head to keystone. Apparently they are all snowboarders as well : p.
post #2 of 16
It is backcountry and uncontrolled, especially after new snowfall (even though easily accessible by the road)- do you have a beacon, probe and shovel, and is someone in your group knowledgeable about terrain and snow assessment?
post #3 of 16
Like dp said, take your backcountry wits with you. If none of you have a clue about backcountry skiing then you probably don't want to learn the hard way. You know not to make ski cuts across something like The Professor, right? You know how to ski as a group, right? You know if we get 18" of snow tonight you shouldn't go out there in the morning, right?

Having said that, we're not getting any snow yet. That doesn't mean we won't wake up to a bunch though. I haven't been out in a few weeks, but I imagine the snow is fairly stable. Loveland Pass near the road should be fine.

Don't die. It'll screw up your friends' day.
post #4 of 16
post #5 of 16
If they close the road, you shouldn't be there anyhow. That's the bottom line.

Sounds to me like you have zilch for backcountry experience. That means you have to trust your friends and their backcountry smarts.

Do you? If not or have any second thoughts, don't go. Spend the $39 and go to ABasin.

I've skied the pass some. It can be safe and alot of fun if you know where to go and what not to do. One tip, if you don't have avy gear and a beacon, stay to the left of the road going towards ABasin. That should be safe.
post #6 of 16
I believe the 7 Sisters have been sliding regularly during the last week or so. If you don't have experience in the bc or on the pass, please find a way to commit suicide that doesn't involve search & rescue having to locate and extract your sorry, mangled body.
post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 

I survived!!!!!!

Thank you for your replies, I skied there and the snow coverage was excellent. I don't know what backcountry experience sounds like so I simply communicate what is on my mind. I know alot about snow assesment. One of the people we skied with is a fireman and patroller. I really value all of your opinions and did find the "morons in the bc" tag funny, the link was excellent. However, it is very apparent to me that some posters here may want to examine the tones of their posts and get honest with themselves about why they are angry. I am always perplexed by such vitriol, though after rereading some of my own posts I can see where I was rude with some of my comments about certain skis, which was due to personal bias and stress from work that I funneled into my post. On a side note, I would re-evaluate what you think you know about avalanches if you believe experience in the bc increases your safety. Openmindedness, willingness, and acute awareness are far more valuable in the bc than ego. I am sure many of you already know this, and again I thank you for taking the time to post as it was very helpful to me.
post #8 of 16
"Openmindedness, willingness, and acute awareness are far more valuable in the bc than ego."

Actually, I think the most valuable thing you can have in the backcountry is knowledge. What you read as "anger" I read as fear...the fear of having to have yet another thread about somebody being killed because they were not prepared. I am glad that you ended the day ok.
post #9 of 16
Or having another person start a slide above you in the backcountry. Just because its right next to the road doesn't mean it isn't dangerous. Ask the guy who was killed off of Berthoud this year.

There are so many people skiing Loveland Pass w/o proper BC equipment it has gotten ridiculous. I can't believe how many morons there are out there.
post #10 of 16
Thread Starter 

snowpacked

Quote:
Originally Posted by racermom
"Openmindedness, willingness, and acute awareness are far more valuable in the bc than ego."

Actually, I think the most valuable thing you can have in the backcountry is knowledge. What you read as "anger" I read as fear...the fear of having to have yet another thread about somebody being killed because they were not prepared. I am glad that you ended the day ok.
I posted asking about snow coverage and terrain. I was concerned because I was skiing with people I had not skied with in an area I had not skied. I feel the question was entirely appropriate. The fact that they had skied there is irrellevant to me. I am the person I rely on for my safety, not ski patrol, not friends, not anyone. 75% of people killed in the BC are experienced in the BC. Experience means nothing. I thought the "more on morons in the bc" tag was funny, at first, then I realised that someone who wanted to ask a question concerning BC conditions might be deterred from asking. The link was excellent though. The fact is that of all the people who posted only one gave me real useful info, and yes I do know not to traverse any slope where the stability of the snowpack is questionable. One poster suggested I ski the leeward side of the slope during a snowstorm and suggested this would be safer, while also suggesting I didn't sound experienced. I've had fun with some of my posts, but never about something potentially life threatening. Forums like this one have the ability to save lives. I refuse to be responsible for anyones fear but my own. I will say the snowpack was stable. The top of the pass was wind scoured with the wind depositing the snow in the direction of A-Basin. Winds were 60 mph. It did get warmer later in the day and this should help solidify the snowpack on the leeward side. Also watch weather conditions in the next few weeks because if this top gets loaded it could easily slide if it does not get consolidated. On a side note as I know some of you are big fans of Keystone; Keystone resort has an unstable snowpack. Weak layers underneath cause me concern, I would be surprised if they did not have an inbounds slide before the end of the season.
post #11 of 16
Yes, I did mean the tag to be funny (glad you liked the pun- and the link). Seriously, however, I am also concerned that the majority of people that I see on the pass do not have a pack- and most are young snowboarders. There is a problem with a lack of awareness and education about backcountry travel and skiing that is alarming, and while the majority of avy deaths are with experienced people, that is skewed data- the majority of people skiing the backcountry are experienced. There was a great article about the heuristics of backcountry decision making in the last couple of issues of Couloir magazine- definitely worth reading.
post #12 of 16
Apropos of this discussion, look here: http://geosurvey.state.co.us/avalanc...rea=1&nav=last

There was a snowboarder triggered avy on the pass yesterday- evidently no one was caught, luckily.
post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by james
I agreed to go skiing with a couple of the guys I work with tomorrow. I am a little apprehensive about it because they want to ski loveland pass and I am thinking the pass will be closed by the road dept. as we will be getting lots of snow. Does anyone have experience with this? Will the road dept. make us leave the area when they get ready to close the road? Most importantly, how is the terrain? I've never skied there and would appreciate any info I could get on snow coverage. I already had one core shot this year and want to avoid a repeat. I am a little perplexed, as I would think the logical choice would be A-Basin, I mean why jerk around shuttling people up the road in a car when you could nail twice the vert with a lift. I was told that if they close the road we will head to keystone. Apparently they are all snowboarders as well : p.
James, The way you asked the above questions gave myself and the rest of the readers the impression that you aren't an experienced back country skier. The posts that followed were one of concern not sarcastic rheteric. If you indeed are an experienced back country skier, you certainly asked some stupid questions. If you think the answers to your post weren't proper, what the heck do you expect? Don't put the twist on us ok?
post #14 of 16
A further note. Experience is everything in the backcountry. With experience comes respect and awareness.

Thinking you know everything you need to know to keep you safe is the biggest falsehood. You can never take anything for granted.

I'm also sure that if Keystone had unstable snowpack they would close those areas or make sure it was safe before allowing skiers to risk their lives and them a lawsuit.
post #15 of 16
Thread Starter 

No mention of it

Quote:
Originally Posted by dp
Apropos of this discussion, look here: http://geosurvey.state.co.us/avalanc...rea=1&nav=last

There was a snowboarder triggered avy on the pass yesterday- evidently no one was caught, luckily.
This is what I don't like about that site. They just mention that there have been slides for the past few days. They probably removed the info you read and just consolidated it. I find this useless. I want to know exactly where and when a slide has happened, as well as what triggered it. Do you know what side of the pass? When I was there I knew the leeward side was getting way loaded cause the wind was fierce. It is true that the leeward side is not as steep but that doesn't mean its not gonna slide. I was also told that there have been hundreds of people up there the past week. So much for the skier compaction myth.
post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 

ok

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lars
A further note. Experience is everything in the backcountry. With experience comes respect and awareness.

Thinking you know everything you need to know to keep you safe is the biggest falsehood. You can never take anything for granted.

I'm also sure that if Keystone had unstable snowpack they would close those areas or make sure it was safe before allowing skiers to risk their lives and them a lawsuit.
Lars I re-read my post and let me clarify some things. I will admit the remark about the core shot on my ski is a bit misleading. I could have clarified that. I do put alot of emphasis on the road dept. in my post and again that is a bit misleading. I can see the concern in the replies. The replies did contain two references to morons and one to a "sorry" body that had been mangled. Let me add that I don't consider Loveland pass to be true backcountry. This fact played a role in my response. I was further agitated by a reply that mischaracterized a comparison I made and implied that I made a statement that was erroneous. I disagree with some statements in your post. Experience means nothing. Nature does not care how experienced you are. Awareness is not a function of experience, it does not increase with experience, indeed experience may lead to decreased awareness. Most accident reports I have read refute your statements, although I do find the second statement to contradict the first. Decision making is what kills most folks. They are hungry and tired, the car is a ten minute traverse or an hour walk. Experience tells them they have not been killed yet. Experience tells them they can find a buried beacon in under two minutes. Experience tells them they can traverse a steep slope one at a time (they've done it before with no slide). They are not willing to walk. They are not openminded enough to question their own decision making process. Some minutes later one of them is not alive. Read the accident reports. Here are some links:
http://www.csac.org

http://nsidc.org
http://avalanche.org
http://wildsnow.com
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