Friday, October 26, 2012

The Banana Chute, Mt Ogden - 36" is better than 11

It's not that our little trips up to Alta over the past few days weren't fun, it's just hard to consider sliding on grass/rocks skiing.  Driving up to Snowbasin Andy and I were optimistic we would find "real" snow.  The idea was to head up to Mt. Ogden and check out Ogden Chute.  

From the start we were pleased to find 2-3 feet of snow and the rare treat of undercast skies.  We raced up faster than comfortable with the hopes of skiing pink powder as the sun hit the upper slopes of Snowbasin.  Unfortunately we were a little slow and had to watch the pink fade to yellow before were out of the shade. We did manage to ski a short powder field with a bit of good yellow light though. 
Andy skinning
Round 1, photo by Andy
From there it was clear Ogden Chute was not even close to filled in.  Instead of forcing our way up it,  we decided to put a skinner up Mt. Allen. Looking from the summit to the NW, we found a nice little shot that has been on the list for a couple years.  Highly visible from I-15,  the Banana Chute runs from the top of Mt. Allen almost all the way to downtown Ogden.   Psyched with the idea of skiing something so aesthetic in October, we couldn't pass it up.  As expected, it was a little boney.  Patches a few hundred feet long were bottomless but just when you started feeling good, the rocks came out.  We skied until we were hitting too many rocks and then skinned our way back up Mt. Allen and headed out Snowbasin.   
Summit of Mt. Allen
Banana Chute
The ski out was enjoyable even though the E to S facing snow was already getting heavy and wet.  Although I'm tempted to go back on Saturday, the thought of more shallow, soon-to-be crusted snow might keep me away, maybe.

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