June 24, 2023
A Bluebird Weekend
I left Denver at the crack of dawn, to beat the weekend I-70 traffic. I sped through the Eisenhower tunnel as the Sun rose above the rugged peaks of the Continental Divide. Ahead I saw only clear blue skies. We had been blessed with a perfect weather window.
Continue reading “Climbing Snowmass Mountain via the ‘direct’ route”
February 2, 2023
Chamonix and the French Alps
We arrived by train in Chamonix, via a narrow mountain pass from neighboring Switzerland. Chamonix was destination #2 for my brother and I—two Americans skiing in Europe for the very first time. The Ikon pass (one of North America’s two skiing “mega-passes”) planted the idea in our minds. Alterra added Chamonix and Zermatt a few years ago, effectively reducing the cost of a European ski trip by … not much at all. But never mind the math. Every avid skier needs to visit the Alps at some point in their life. And here we were.
Continue reading “Chamonix’s Vallée Blanche ski descent”
August 28, 2022
South Colony Lakes
Our truck ambled slowly up the rough road to the South Colony Lakes Trailhead. It was mid-morning on a gorgeous, sunny Saturday in late August. Puffy white clouds had begun to coagulate as we donned our packs and divvied up the climbing gear.
Continue reading “Crestone Needle via the Ellingwood Arete”
June 25, 2022
We arrived at the Castle Creek trailhead around dawn. We drove the rough, 2-wheel drive road up towards 10,000 feet, parking just below the creek crossing. And after fiddling with some gear we were off, up the long dirt road towards Castle and Conundrum peaks.
Continue reading “Castle & Conundrum Peaks”
September 1, 2020
Arrival at Dawn
I met my guide just before dawn for our ascent of Three Fingered Jack: a craggy, prominent remnant of a shield Volcano in central Oregon. This would be, far and away, my most technical rock ascent. As such, we had met the day before at Smith Rock to tune up my climbing skills.
Continue reading “Three Fingered Jack”