2011
Dec 11

Note: Most people call this the East face. But since it gets blasted by the sun throughout the day, with a snowpack that behaves like a south face, it might as well be called South. It would be foolhardy as a skier to arrive on the scene thinking that it only gets early morning sun!

After 3 attempts over the last 12 or so years, finally skied the South-East line on Atwell.  Usually get turned away by horribly rotten snowpacks.

elfin atwell

Lee Lau photo

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Nov 20

One of my best days last year was a quick afternoon hit of the major gully between Atwell and Dalton dome. Not very steep (mid 40′s), but one of the most impressive situations you can find yourself in the sea-to-sky. Finally mentioning it, because I’ve (others included) have never heard of anyone skiing it. The slope is too easy when the world class Siberian is staring you right in the face!

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Nov 11

Peru Steeps Part 7: Iquitos

By Trevor 2011, Peru Comments Off

iquitos1

The cinematic beginning of the ski trip took place in the truly dark and exotic amazonian city of Iquitos. Perched in the North-East corner of Peru, Iquitos is the unofficial start of the amazon. It’s overall charm is derived from the fact that it’s a city of 300,000 inhabitants with no roads accessing it. You either take a boat up the Amazon or fly. You get that ‘Havana’ atmosphere where all the buildings, cars and buses are preserved from a bygone era. Moreover, there is a sinister side to Iquitos that truly makes it such an intense place to visit. When I asked Nick why we were heading there, he simply stated, “the devil lives there.”

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Nov 05

rethel1

Note on the b+w photos.  It was a bluebird day, but when you’re soloing and have no subject in your shot, your tracks become the subjects. Best way to show them is by taking out the color and jacking the contrast 100%.

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Oct 19
Jimmy Mid-couloir

Jimmy Mid-couloir

Yesterday I had a great technical ski mission with my longtime friend Jim Martinello.  A quick-laid plan the night before resulted in a 7am start at the Wedge trailhead, with skis on our backs.  Our plan was to ski the West facing Wedge Couloir (some call it the North-West Couloir) and take some photos of Arcteryx product. I don’t mind being the model, wearing the clothes, and acting out heroic poses with a distant stare, but time was of the essence and maybe our photo taking slowed us down a little too much.

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Oct 15

The set-up, looks funny but works!

Note: upped my ISO to 2500 to take some full moon shots and forgot to lower it the rest of the day. Had to reduce the noise the best I could, and that is why the photos looked rather ‘painterly’.  Early ski season photography is interesting though due to all the rocks and other exposed features adding texture to the photos.

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Oct 03

Ptor Spricenieks. Huayhuash Peru

Ptor and I got to make a bunch of turns. Some steep, some easy, some icy and some a little softer. And that’s all that counts.  Making turns in the Southern Hemisphere where no one else has. Not many pictures though. As with the ratio above, so little time is spent skiing that very few ski photos emerge in this kind of terrain.  Usually I get a couple good action shots per ski line, but since I was filming most of the time on the Canon 5D, I really didn’t get any ski shots.

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Sep 23

In retrospect, navigating the glaciers was the crux of our ski trip.  At home on the coast, our huge snowfall fills in all the nooks and crannies. Not the case in Peru. We had two separate objectives and each time most planning was totally theoretical since we had no idea if we’d get through the glaciers.  But as with all these types of missions the path just seems to unfold. Just as you’re about to be turned back, a step or a little notch through a serac presents itself and you’re once again happy and sailing upward until the next obstacle.

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Sep 07

After setting up our tents in the most beautiful basecamp in the history of climbing, our thoughts turned to filming, climbing and skiing.  We made a plan to simultaneously acclimatize and scope our theoretical ski lines from some 4500m peaks across the valley.

Beautiful views of Jirishanca:

Yerupaja Chico and Jirishanca.

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Aug 25

Peru Steeps Part 3: the approach

By Trevor 2011, Peru Comments Off

Ptor Spricenieks and Yerupaja North Face

Landing late-night in Lima and cruising the empty streets with Ptor, looking for some food, was all too surreal. The immediacy of the trip and the fact that I hadn’t seen him in several years was a bit of a shock.  We soon headed up beautiful mountain roads to the city of Huarez at over 10,000 feet.  Pretty high for a Coastal boy.  Peru’s most impressive mountains literally surround the city.  Being  back in a hardcore mountain zone is like a Hindu going to Varanasi or Catholics being in St. Peters – it’s heavy shit.  Makes my skin crawl with excitement, thinking about all the badass climbers and skiers that have passed through those streets.  To me Peru has the purest high altitude ski history.  The Himalayas are marred with bottled oxygen descents, fixed lines, and climbers pretending to be skiers and anyone else who wants to get famous by skiing everest or k2. Peru seems to attract the purists, people who just want to ski the gnar, going after aesthetic fluted peaks and faces that don’t relent a degree in their entirety.

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