Skiing

“One of the Best, and Headiest” – Mummy Cooler III & IV (via Scepter) (WI6-, M6, III) & Other Ice Happenings – Hyalite Canyon, MT (01.22.23)

The hanging WI5-6 dagger of “Mummy Four” stands as the single most impressive ice formation on the east side of Hyalite Canyon besides the ever famous Winter Dance. To reach it, Chris Hackbarth and I climbed the Scepter (WI5) and “Mummy Three” (M6, WI3) in what turned out to be an excellent grade three kind-of…

An Argument For Three-Piece Bail Anchors – Piton Rips on Rappel – First Hand Account [opinions]

A first hand account of a “bomber” piton ripping from a rappel anchor while ski mountaineering in the remote necks of Grand Teton National Park. Amidst a growing climate of “two-piece” alpine anchors, this article presents a compelling argument for placing a third, especially when pitons are involved. “Make it bomber, keep it simple, and…

More Sustained – Cardiac Aretes, Man O’ War Variation (5.9, II) – Ship’s Prow, Grand Teton Nat. Park (10.17.22)

A week before the onset of winter 2022, Connor James and I connected the dots on a more sustained variation to the traditional, and somewhat classic, Cardiac Aretes (5.9/5.10-, II) on Omega Buttress. Our line followed the lower half of Man O’ War (5.8, II) for two pitches of adventurous and varied, albeit discontinuous climbing…

A Seven Pitch Jenny Lake Link-Up – Seizure Disorder, Direct South Ridge (Baxter’s Pinnacle, 5.10) and No Perches Necessary (5.9R) – Grand Teton Nat. Park (10.20.22)

Seizure Disorder is a single pitch 5.10- variation to the original South Ridge (5.9, II, 5 pitches) route on Baxter’s Pinnacle. No Perches Necessary is a short but worthy two pitch affair at the mouth of Cascade Canyon, featuring a stellar and sustained 5.9 fist crack, and a bold 5.8R runout slab pitch. On October…

Ice Cream Cone Topo – West Crack (5.7) – Grand Teton Nat. Park (2022)

The west crack of the “Ice Cream Cone” (USGS ~12,405) in Grand Teton National Park is the most popular route of ascent for southbound Grand Traverse parties. To my knowledge there is no existing topo for this route on the internet. This “post” is nothing more than a photo and route description for future parties.…

Unique In Every Way – Dike Route and East Face (5.6, 5.4, IV) – Dike Pinnacle and Middle Teton, Grand Teton Nat. Park (08.20.22)

The Dike Route is a captivating 3000′ alpine climb that ascends the east face of the 12,809′ Middle Teton and it’s eastern sub-peak, the 12,350′ Dike Pinnacle, by way of a striking diabase dike gawked at by Garnet Canyon travelers far and wide. The “climb” is better classified as a full spectrum mountaineering adventure, with…

An Old-School Adventure – Almost Overhanging (5.9, III), Almost Arete – Disappointment Peak, Grand Teton Nat. Park (08.14.22)

On Sunday August 14th, 2022, Alex Wells joined my obscure vision to climb Almost Overhanging, an 850 foot, 7 pitch, seldom climbed route on Disappointment Peak’s Almost Arete. What we found was a “logical” line seriously lacking in traffic though deserving of more, with sound rock where it counted and an exciting variety of climbing…

Backyard Ice – Boy Scout Falls (WI3) – Teton Canyon, WY (03.2022)

Sifting through half written blog drafts from this past winter, I decided to finish up this short trip report for the sake of completeness – and to share some of my favorite pictures. Though far from a destination route, Boy Scout Falls provides an excellent moderate multi-pitch ice experience with easy access from the “Idaho…

Corn on the East Face! – Teewinot Mountain, GT Nat. Park (05.18.2022)

May 18th, 2022 saw my second summit ski descent of the East Face of Teewinot Mountain. Sustained 45+ degree face skiing above terraced cliffs and a 400 foot wide upper bowl funneling through a ski-width choke characterize this extremely classic Teton ski mountaineering objective. Connor James and I took advantage of the newly cleared Lupine…

Three Times The Charm – We Finally Found the Tallboy Couloir – Owen/Teewinot Cirque – GT Nat. Park, WY (04.24.22)

The Tallboy Couloir is an underground classic in the Teton steep skiing scene. 4,000 feet of fall-line vertical relief, uber-exposed entrance, 1,000 feet of sustained 50 degree skiing in a commanding, narrow and consequential upper couloir, all in the shadows of two of the Teton’s finest peaks, Mount Owen and Teewinot Mountain – need I…

Five Things I Learned on My First Bishop Bouldering Trip

It’s approaching spring climbing road trip season! Around this time last year (2021) I took off to Bishop California for three weeks of bouldering, and despite breaking my wrist on day four learned a tremendous amount about the Bishop bouldering scene, especially as it pertains to beginners. I climbed at the Buttermilks as well as…

My Own Little World – Flashing The Thrill Is Gone (M4+, WI4) & The Matrix (M4, WI4-), Lessons Learned & Conditions Report – Hyalite Canyon, MT (2.18-2.19, 2022)

After belaying Brian Emory on his first coveted red-point of “The Thrill” just seven days before, I returned with Scott Melin to attempt an “on-sight” lead. We climbed for two days at the Unnamed Wall and Mummy Cooler Areas, ticking ascents on Mummy II, The Matrix, Feeding The Cat, The Fat One and of course,…

Mission Mentality – Skiing the Bowling Alley – Teton Canyon, WY (02.13.22)

The “Bowling Alley” is a 2,600 foot technical ski descent on the north aspect of Teton Canyon’s Treasure Mountain. After a month of minimal snow I hoped this funky, elusive and likewise rarely descended line could be hiding some of the last untouched powder on the west slope of the Tetons. I scored, but not…

January on the Grand – Ford-Stettner Couloir, Grand Teton – Ski Descent (01.19.22)

The Ford-Stettner route on the Grand Teton is arguably the Teton Range’s most classic and sought ski mountaineering descent. On January 19th, 2022, I completed my second successful climb and ski descent of the Ford-Stettner, this time with a brand new partner. In classic Grand Teton fashion we battled copious unknowns, learned many lessons and…

Awakening the Sleeping Dragon – A Remote Triggered Deep Slab Avalanche in the Tetons (12.27.21)

On December 27th 2021, I remotely triggered an avalanche of serious destructive magnitude while traversing a north-to-south ridgeline, at approximately 9,600 feet in the west Teton backcountry, on skis. The deep persistent slab avalanche broke with a 6-10 foot crown, ran 1,400 feet, uprooted many trees and failed on the “December 5th weak layer”. Read…

Sending 5.11 – Five Things I Learned in My First Year of Climbing

One year ago (Sept. 2020) I bought my first pair of climbing shoes. My cardinal goal was simple – 5.11 by day 365. By month 11 the chains were clipped, and along the way I learned many lessons. From sport to trad, alpine faces to lowland boulders, I pushed my limits. This article is a…

Teewinot Mountain – Southeast Couloir – A Slushy Summer Mess, and A Near Fatal Miss – Grand Teton N.P. (May 2019)

The Southeast Couloir of Teewinot Mountain is an often overlooked alternative to the highly sought East Face route. Topping out at 11,600 feet on the southernmost shoulder, the 600 foot couloir starts narrow, finishes wide and maintains a steady slope angle in the mid-forty degree* range. Despite impressive views of the Grand Teton and a…

Skiing the East Face of Teewinot – By the Skin of Our Teeth (03.01.20)

Rising a staggering 6,000 feet directly from the foothills of Grand Teton National Park, the East Face of Teewinot Mountain is a prized ski mountaineering descent sought far and wide. Instead of the usual Teton technical couloir shenanigans, the East Face resembles primetime descents in the Montana Rockies and High Sierra – steep bowl skiing…

The Undercover Giant – Skiing the East Face of Mount Wister (Feb. 2020)

During a high pressure cycle in late February 2020, Sam Johnson and I set our sights to Mount Wister, the criminally overlooked 11,455 foot giant lurking deep in the heart of Avalanche Canyon, Grand Teton National Park. The East Face is the peak’s test-piece descent, requiring a long (for the Tetons) approach and several thousand…

Knee Deep on Nez Perce – The Sliver and East Hourglass Couloirs (Mar. 2019)

On a bitterly cold March 2019 morning, John Walker and I set off to attempt the “Nez Perce Trifecta” – skiing the Sliver, East Hourglass and West Hourglass Couloirs in a single push – a Teton ski mountaineering classic. We didn’t quite hit the mark. High winds, deep snow and sub-zero temperatures pushed us towards…

Teton Tested – Icelantic Natural 101 – The Ski Mountaineer’s Quiver Killer

The Natural 101 from Icelantic Skis is the ski mountaineer’s quiver killer. Light enough to climb the Grand Teton and tackle multi-peak traverses, but burly enough to dispatch thin couloirs, bushy June exits and rocky October strike missions, this ski can handle quite literally anything. Introduction Lightweight or Durable? Do We Need to Compromise? In…


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