I think Andy must have had the same mental image because we both started talking about going back. I wanted to spend time with my wife and I'm sure he wanted to spend time with his family so we tried to come up with a plan that would only have us gone for a morning (and maybe an afternoon). We knew the skinner and booter were in most of the way and on Tuesday it had taken us three and a half hours to summit. We figured this time we could move the same speed if not a little quicker. 4 1/2 hour drive, 3 hours up, 2 hours down, 4 1/2 hour drive back, it'd be easy. We'd leave at 3AM and be home by dinner.
Amazingly, our day worked out almost exactly as planned. The 3AM start was pushed back to 3:45 and the drive to and from the park took a touch longer than expected. Other than that, our timeline was perfect. We summited around noon and the upper south face was still dry. As we worked our way down the snow became progressively wetter but not too wet. We swapped leads and enjoyed the sun, the good snow, and most of all, the effortless decision making that comes from years of skiing and climbing together. It seems like more often than not a day in the mountains doesn't end up exactly as expected, but when it does...
|Entering the South Fork|
|Posing on the summit|
|First turns from the summit. The old tracks we had seen were covered by an inch of new snows.|
|Contemplating the steep entrance to the hanging South Face. Photo AD|
|Entering the South Face. Photo AD|
|The upper hanging South Face|
|Andy skiing to the entrance of the Amora VIda|
|The upper chute proper seemed a little thin so we swung to the skier right for a couple hundred feet before rejoining the couloir.|
|More of Andy staying right before heading directly under the overhanging east side of the Amora|
|In the Amora|
|Photo by AD|
|Photo by AD|
|Andy's boy showing his tough face|