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extreme terrain, close to salt lake city. Snowbird?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Guys, have a 2 day trip coming up.

Where would you go to hit the most steep, deepest terrain?

Any places you can recommend for snowcat?  (cost is an issue)

Thanks!
post #2 of 17
On a 2 day trip that's not planned for snow, getting steep and deep is a crap shoot unless you're going to hike the back country. There is one snowcat operation and cost is the issue.

Inbounds, the Cirque at the Bird is the easiest place to find steep. At Alta, the high traverse leads to many opportunities to wet your pants. Be careful what you wish for. Slides happen. If you're not avie aware, you might be safer off going steep or deep.
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
mmmm.  avalanches :)

Super info , thanks again!

Can you suggest a cheap place to look for accommodations at snowbird?
post #4 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by therusty View Post

On a 2 day trip that's not planned for snow, getting steep and deep is a crap shoot unless you're going to hike the back country. There is one snowcat operation and cost is the issue.

Inbounds, the Cirque at the Bird is the easiest place to find steep. At Alta, the high traverse leads to many opportunities to wet your pants. Be careful what you wish for. Slides happen. If you're not avie aware, you might be safer off going steep or deep.

Hmmm avalanches inbounds at alta? Or are you talking about bc cause i don't think avalanches happen inbounds in NA unless extreme occurences because of patrol bombing?
post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 
I've looked at the Snowbird Areal map...

  How do you get to the circue?  little cloud lift, or the Aerial tram?

 It looks like peruvian express opens up to nice stuff as well.  Hope that stuff is open :)
post #6 of 17
There are no cheap accomodations at the Bird. Midvale has tons of cheap places to stay. Motel 6/Studio 6 on Fort Union looks like it has rooms for about $50/night.
post #7 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiking4 View Post

Hmmm avalanches inbounds at alta? Or are you talking about bc cause i don't think avalanches happen inbounds in NA unless extreme occurences because of patrol bombing?

It certainly isn't common, but it definitely can happen.  I don't know about at Alta, but there was an in-bounds death last year at Snowbird right next door.
post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaobrien6 View Post




It certainly isn't common, but it definitely can happen.  I don't know about at Alta, but there was an in-bounds death last year at Snowbird right next door.

Yes, but JH also had a couple avvys, as well as Mammoth I believe among Snowbird. '08-09 was an usual year. This "freak accidents" aren't supposed to happen. There was just an extremely weak layer last year.
post #9 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by clustermagnet View Post

  How do you get to the circue?  little cloud lift, or the Aerial tram?
 
Tram gives you access to everything. Little Cloud lets you cut over to part of the cirque, but lets you access a ton of steep terrain (gad chutes through Dalton's draw - area to the right of the tram).
post #10 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiking4 View Post




Hmmm avalanches inbounds at alta? Or are you talking about bc cause i don't think avalanches happen inbounds in NA unless extreme occurences because of patrol bombing?
 

Wow, you really think that? You need to pay more attention. The Western snowpack had been Really sketchy . There have been some pretty big slides inbounds this year. At a bunch of different places. And a few casualties.
post #11 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecimmortal View Post




Wow, you really think that? You need to pay more attention. The Western snowpack had been Really sketchy . There have been some pretty big slides inbounds this year. At a bunch of different places. And a few casualties.

Didn't know... I thought last year was just a freak occurence. I haven't really been bothered too much to see how conditions are "out west' because I'm not going there this year. Out of curiousity, where have inbounds avalanches existed thus far?

edit: I see a bunch on past avalanches (mostly from last season with the bird, JH, and squaw incidents) but none from this winter.
Edited by skiking4 - 1/28/10 at 3:36pm
post #12 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiking4 View Post




Hmmm avalanches inbounds at alta? Or are you talking about bc cause i don't think avalanches happen inbounds in NA unless extreme occurences because of patrol bombing?

It is thinking like this that causes in bounds avalanche deaths to still happen. There have been a significant number of in bounds slides this year.

Not even a week ago a man died in Sun Valley.
www.mtexpress.com/index2.php

Take a look at post 17. I wonder how many people would view that location as dangerous or the possible slide to be even life threatening.
www.tetongravity.com/forums/showthread.php


Just because you are in bounds does not make it safe.
post #13 of 17
Clustermagnet. If you are on a budget forget about the snowcat.  Why bother.  There is tons of steep skiing at Alta and Snowbird.  It is not hard to find whatsoever.  Look at the slopes while you are riding up the lifts.  At Snowbird you will see Experts Only Gates all throughout the  mountains, most of them are quite doable by an experienced skier.  The best way to feel the pull of gravity is to explore and follow the tracks as they go off the trail, into the unknown.  I would be careful going where you don't see any tracks. 

Regarding avalanches.  It seems there has been an increase in in-bounds avalanches the past few years.  I wouldn't worry too much, but ski with a friend, they are still a rare occurrence and I would think you are much more likely to die by hitting a tree or getting run over by someone.  After storms the patrols will shoot artillery and drop charges on the slopes at risk.  The odds are less than 50% that there will even be powder on your trip and it would be dump luck to be caught in one.  If you are going to ski the steep and deep you are going to have to take that small chance, that is all there is to it.  Don't let anyone blow this risk out of proportion.  People die at these resorts every year in all kinds of accidents besides avalanches. 

You don't really need specific directions at Alta/Bird, it is all there for you to find, but the advice for skiing the Cirque is good.  Look at it while you go up the tram, and probably you would want to traverse down a bit where you will feel more comfortable with the pitch.  Ski every lift, there is good skiing just about everywhere.  At Alta you want to ski on the Wildcat lift and Supreme.  That should do it for you!
Edited by SnowbirdDevotee - 2/1/10 at 2:44pm
post #14 of 17
Want to go steep and cheep, stay in Salt Lake and ski cottonwood canyon.
post #15 of 17
Thread Starter 
guys, thanks a ton for your advice!

didnt want to start an avy side-thread...  shit happens :(

Anyways, i'll hope for the best!!! :)
post #16 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiking4 View Post


edit: I see a bunch on past avalanches (mostly from last season with the bird, JH, and squaw incidents) but none from this winter.

 


Oh - well no worries then.


Wow.





...I'd also like to say "clustermagnet" is the best trollname I've ever heard. Because you came up with such a great name, I'm going to help you out. Hit Sunnyside. DO NOT tell anybody else this info - it would be a shame to see all that sweet extreme powder all tracked up.
post #17 of 17
If cost is an issue but you want to find some powder, check into Powder Mountain.  It is a little off the beaten path and has powder stashes weeks after storms have moved out. 

If you go off the backside, a bus runs all day picking people up and it is steep and fun as heck.  In addition, you can get Snow Cat rides for $12 per ride if you just want to try it out.  The snowcats go to an area of the mountain that is only services by the cats, but it is nice because at the end of the run, it dumps you off at the bottom of a chairlift so you can just keep skiing, or take the lift back for another cat lap. 

Great place, but not fancy at all!  Also, I will likely receive death threats from telling you about the place since people like it to be a secret or something.  
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