Peak(s):  Mt. Democrat  -  14,148 feet
Date Posted:  03/25/2006
Modified:  12/03/2009
Date Climbed:   03/25/2006
Author:  doumall
 Democrat - Summit Ski Descent   

Solo skin up and ski down of Democrat from Kite Lake road closure today. Ascent of the standard route with ski descent of the SE face. The road closure added 2.8 miles one way.

Passed by two snowshoers at Kite Lake who afterward had a very difficult time making up to the saddle between Cameron and Dem. Not sure they made it. Took me 3 hours 40 mins to summit (8:40 am start, 12:20 pm summit). I was very happy to have the skis to skin over the deep wet snow. Very warm in the morning.

The descent was great. From the summit I skied to the false summit of the standard route and dropped directly off the top onto the SE face. Started out with about 150' of 40 degree rock avoidance, then opened up onto a beautiful 35 degree face of perfect spring snow. Really gave the opportunity to let um fly.

As for avalanche conditions, there was plenty of loose activity out of the steeper S to E aspects. I was happy to have skied when I did instead of any later in the day. Just above Kite Lake, I triggered a small shallow wet sluff with a hard turn on an S aspect which was in the high 30 degree range. Shallow soft slabs on the ridge up from the cameron/democrat saddle were shearing easily from the hard windblown crust beneath, making me decide to ascend rock ribs.





The ski out to the car from Kite Late was a little flat, lots of pushing. Finished at 2. Is it always this good?

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