Thursday, December 18, 2008

Skiing the 14ers

Had a good time fixing up kids' bikes today at the Velodrome, plan to do some more tomorrow.

Tonight Laurel and I went to Neptune for a slideshow on skiing the 14ers. I wasn't sure what to expect. I knew Lou Dawson wrote a book on Colorado's 14ers and has done both summer and winter ascents of all of them. This show was by Chris Davenport and I wasn't sure what the angle would be.

The show was gripping! Even though I was up early today and the show ran late, I knew I wouldn't be able to fall right asleep tonight after a show like that! His goal was to ski from the summit of every 14,000+ foot mountain in Colorado -- all 54 of them -- in a year. That's insane. Even skiing the easiest one of these mountains is insane. There was one month period where he bagged 22 descents. That's about how many working days there are in a month, and some of these days started at 3am and were 16 hours long.

These pictures show the route he and his partners pioneered on Capitol Peak (click pic for his website). See in the first picture how that red line goes down from the summit then cuts sharp to the left and around the arete? You have to go that way to avoid the 500' sheer cliffs of doom. He described it as a "no-fall zone". The second pic shows a scary perspective of those cliffs from around the corner.

I'd like to do some back-country skiing someday, but geez, not this.

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