Routes: MO via the C couloir, Belford via NW gully, Oxford from Belford.
Total Mileage:20 Miles with 10,300 vertical in 2 days
Conditons: MO: Plenty of snow for some good clean family fun-summit ski with corn, pow, and crust as the main dish and some sastrugi for a side
Belford: NW gully is skiable within about 200-300 feet of the summit
Oxford: Able to ski within 50 feet of summit almost all the way to the saddle Approach: Skinning possible about half a mile up the trail, icy and a post-holed nightmare for skiers. Slush fest for the descent
The crew: MO- hberry(Mike) skier, Otina-skier, Co Buckey (Jason) skier, Moonstalker (Kelly) snowshoer. Tmathews (Terry) and Dmccool (Dan) caught up with us as our ski boots slowed us down with the ardous boot packing.
After a really long week in school, Dan (Dmccool) and I left Co Springs en route to the Missouri Gulch area Friday evening for the gathering. We met many familiar and new faces and discussed plans for the weekend. With high temperatures in the forecast for tommorow, we did not want to mess around with potential wet snow problems. Big groups tend to increase time spent on a mountain so the start time for skiers was to be 3am. The Approach up the first part of MO Gulch is less than inviting, I opted to make efficient skinning out of it while others bootpacked. It was warm enough that I skinned up in a T-Shirt to treeline where the wind picked up.
A first view of MO
Time to pack up the skins
The trail breaking goes on
Kell and Terry
Topping out on the ridge
The summit ski is in.
Then an exciting traverse on snow...
Terry blazin across
Otina a few feet shy of the summit
Dan almost to the summit happy with his full body suite he payed 20 bucks for Ever ever ever ever est est est est...
Some other people had brought their pooch. Probably the coolest dog I have met.
Jason enjoying the views before the descent
This was my 10th 14er ski descent, with Belford and Oxford the following day being 11th and 12th.
I got no pictures of the descent, but a crappy Go Pro video of it. Otina got a few. This was my first time using a Go Pro cam and the screw to keep it from tilting loosend a little. Still got some good footage. The snow stayed cool and in our comfort zones. Our only concern was a shallow 3-4 inch wind slab that we discovered on our ascent. It varied form gully to gully, we dug a pit, a few ski cuts were made and we were off.
Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
Caution: The information contained in this report may not be accurate and should not be the only resource used in preparation for your climb. Failure to have the necessary experience, physical conditioning, supplies or equipment can result in injury or death. 14ers.com and the author(s) of this report provide no warranties, either express or implied, that the information provided is accurate or reliable. By using the information provided, you agree to indemnify and hold harmless 14ers.com and the report author(s) with respect to any claims and demands against them, including any attorney fees and expenses. Please read the 14ers.com Safety and Disclaimer pages for more information.