Spring season is just around the corner. In Wyoming, you can smell it in the air and sense it on the wind. The sun seems to be shining more and the snow is stabilizing. Time to get out and see what is happening in some of those shaded and protected couloirs before the grizzly bears wake up too much.
Nick, Rick, and Kevin loading up at the trailhead:
AhhhhÃ¢â‚¬Â¦the beautiful Pinnacle Buttes! We are headed to the backside of these pinnacles:
Purple and pink Panther goes to Pinnacles with Patagonia sticker for environmentally friendliness.
Kevin skinning back into Jules BowlÃ¢â‚¬Â¦we only rode the machine on the groomed trail and then parked it at the base of the bowl.
Coming out of the trees we are greeted with beautiful scenery and formations:
Here is the line we talked about skiing all week, but four people would be way too many to drop this one:
So we work our way a bit further over to the castle formation to see what is hiding back there:
This area is popular for snowmobile high marking (drive clear up into the couloirs in the background), so we looked for an undisturbed line. Amazingly, not one snowmobiler back in this area the whole day.
We found our way into the apron of Jules Castle Couloir. The line was totally undisturbed. We dug a pit low in the couloir since this aspect was untracked by Ã¢â‚¬Ëœbilers. Moderate results, Q3 sheers, nothing too dauntingÃ¢â‚¬Â¦minor surface instablility.
Nick leads the first pitch of Jules Castle CouloirÃ¢â‚¬Â¦variable snow once in the couloir, ice powder, windslabs. Nick is below the rollover and you cannot see the rest of the couloir in this picture. Conditions got very dicey below and on the rollover. Nick started sinking up to his knees in deep snow. I worked my way up to him, set a belay, and dug another pit: