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post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I was reading the book Eiger Obsession( highly recomended) and it mentioned that one of the people had been plannng on attempting a K2 ski descent(not sure if it ever happened). How is this possible and what is the definition of descent? Do they have to make it all the way down or just have skis on their feet at some point?



post #2 of 5

I think this is very much an "eye of the beholder" question.


Ski descents of highly technical mountains often require rappels or down-climbing at some point.  To me, if somebody had the cojones to stitch together a line consisting of ski turns down snowfields connected by rappelling or climbing in places where there's no snow, then I'd personally call that a "ski descent".


Style points count for something, which is why there may be many "first" descents of a given peak as people ski more and more difficult specific lines.  For awhile, there were even sub-categories to cover first descents by alpine skiers, tele skiers, and snowboarders (with even finer sub-categories to separate descents by men or women).


In my book, if someone successfully hauls a pair of skis to the summit of K2, almost ANY ski turns they make would count as a ski descent. 

post #3 of 5

As an avid ski mountaineer (sorry, nothing as cool as K2) I generally consider a descent to be skiing a skiable line.  Top to bottom isn't always possible.  Obviously a summit of the peak is needed but a down climb to a skiable snow field is often required.  However, technically speaking, the skier has descended a specific line on a given peak not necessarily the entire peak.


I'm with Bob, if anyone links some turns up high on K2 they can claim it, it's pretty intense up there.  Maybe I'll get there someday

post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 

hey skierhj,


Since its related I saw that u were located in aspen and was wondering if you knew of any good groups or anything to meet up with people for mountaineering. I go to the Air Force Academy and a friend and I are starting to get into it with a goal od doing an ascent of Denali our senior year( we are freshman). 

post #5 of 5

There are several guides in the area that can get you out with some people but while they're good guides it's mostly tourists going up.  My suggestion (and the way I got into climbing) was to go to every climbing shop I could find and asked where to go climb.  Start talking to the employees, if the shop does lectures go to those, go to the climbing walls and make climbing friends.  They'll get you out more and they'll introduce you to more climbers and mountaineers.  You can also get involved with the 14'ers Initiative and do some trail days (you'll meet some cool people and do some good work).


I'm happy to hook you up with some beta on Denali, I've done two ascents one of those a ski descent too.  Amazing time!

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