Saturday, May 5, 2012

Broad Fork Twins, West Face - Jared's return

Today was the first day Jared had been out since the Superior incident.  His orthopedist told him to expect a 3 month recovery. I'm glad it was more like 3 weeks and, although he's still not 100%, he was well enough for a 6000' climb up the Twins.  Being injured or having friends who are really makes me appreciate being healthy.  WELCOME BACK SAMURAI! 

Chad had the idea of heading up Deaf Smith to the top of the Twins and skiing back down the West Bowl.  Since I had tried to ski this a few times last year (turned back due to sketch snow) and it was Jared's return, I just couldn't say no. We (Scott too) parked on Golden Hills Drive and headed up in the dark, criss crossing the river multiple times.  Lucky for us Scott had been on the trail before and was able to play guide in the few tricky sections (1. trail headed into a raging river and we had to climb 4th to low 5th class rock to get around it 2. trail disappeared into scrub oak).

After minimal bush whacking we found ourselves at the snow line in the middle of an amazing burn.  From there we followed a few narrow chutes up the south fork and were in the upper west bowl in no time.  Dark clouds and something that sounded like thunder had us asking, "Are we going to get struck by lighting?" Who knows if we were right but we came to the conclusion that it was some sort of bombing down low instead.  Can you hear the mine from across the Valley? At that point Chad was feeling strong so he punched a booter all the way up the west bowl.  We were shortly ripping skins and trying to get him back for Saturday morning soccer games.

Chad heading towards the West Bowl (note the ski crampons,  they make it so much easier!)
Chad going strong
The ski down was great.  After 2 trips to the Tetons where we found either wet or wind effected snow, it was great to have some good old fashion spring hard pack.  Apart from two narrow chokes, it was wide open spring skiing all the way to the meadows.  Another half dozen stream crossings and Chad was off driving to soccer.
Jared, on race skis, close to the summit
Jared in the West Bowl
Scott in one of two little chokes
Scott, lower, just past the choke
Scott getting wet


  1. such creepy noises. both days of it, i was sketched out skiing. i received an answer online: it was "artillery testing at camp wilson." wish we could ski in peace.

  2. Ha! You guys like to suffer! Up AND down Deaf Smith in one day! Scenic in there though.

    Fun to just summit Twin via traditional routes, ski the west bowl (I call it SW face), then skin up and over to Bonkers, exit Bonkers. Although that's mid winter, not during May and a low snow year.

    Anyway, cool place back there. I love the remote feel of that part of upper Deaf SMith.