the chute gets what’s coming to him

May 19, 2009

I know, I know, it’s May 19th, but I just couldn’t let the chute win. Nope. I win.

We did Tanners, up Little Cottonwood Canyon. A five minute hike from the car to first water, then snow. Sort of snow. There might have been rocks and dirt and trees in it.

tanners start sign

You know what’s cool? What’s cool is hiking with the guys who design the equipment you’re using. Those green boots? Check. Those skis with no decals? Prototypes. Crampons? Paul, on the right, brought the prototypes he’s working on. He was so intent on trying them in all conditions, he wore them from the car. (Not IN the car. That would be dangerous. But funny.)

Getting your feet wet here would suck. To avoid the dreaded wet sock climb, we resorted to some moves I learned while watching Tarzan the Ape man.

Yup, one just hucks one’s pack and poles across, gets as close to the slippery edge as one can get, and goes for it.

tanners ben 1


tanners ben 2

And on up into what they call the Valley of Death (not late Spring, but imagine being up here mid-winter–avalanche city).

tanners ben skirting water

Here I am with the super duper Little Cottonwood skyline in the background:

tanners ben 3

Because I’m a crappy photographer, you’ll have to imagine the Little Cottonwood South skyline in this shot. I hate myself.

tanners ben paul early snow

But here’s the Little Cottonwood NORTH skyline, sort of.

tanners ben paul climbing

I’m coming, I’m coming:

tanners ben 4

Ben thinks about his line.

tanners ben thinks about it

And decides there are better ones:

tanners ben traverses top

I contemplate my line:

tanners my boot crampon looking down

And decide not to ski. Seriously, I’m still up there. Here. Whatever.

No, just kidding, here I go:

tanners ben 6

After we skied the upper chute, Ben decided the snow would be much better over there.

tanners paul billy goating

And, as always (seriously, ALWAYS) Ben was right.

tanners ben coming down the sweet corn

Sweet creamy corn.

With obstacles:

tanners ben dodging trees

Tanners was so good, I may go show another chute who’s boss. As long as I have Ben to back me up.


16 Responses to “the chute gets what’s coming to him”

  1. mark Says:

    That green face? Envy.

  2. KanyonKris Says:

    Pretty cool to ski the receding snow.

    Is Timp up soon?

  3. Aaron Says:

    Would I need crampons or other gear to do that? I s’pose I should get some eventually…

  4. Rob Says:

    Your killing me…Plus, the dentist didn’t even spot any cavities. I was hoping that he would have spotted a life threatening cavity that would have made me glad I missed out on today.

    But hey, no cavities.

  5. KanyonKris Says:

    Ok, I must add – you are a little crazy, you know?

  6. dug Says:

    kris, i think you made that comment even BEFORE i reposted with ben’s pic of me doing the tarzan pole vault.

    • KanyonKris Says:

      Yes, my comment was before the pole vault pics so I’ll recalculate:

      Resourcefulness (McGyver) quotient increased by +5

      Crazy score increased by +1 because your use of tools demonstrates intelligence which only further proves you must be insane to complete this adventure.

    • KanyonKris Says:

      Wait, you said “tarzan pole vault”. I don’t remember Tarzan pole vaulting, vine swinging yes. Freudian (Bo Derek’s breasts inspired) slip?

  7. slcsamurai Says:

    you no say “bonsai.” “Bonsai” is tree, not kamikaze saying. you say “banzai”! “Banzai”! That you say.

    — the samurai

  8. Miles Archer Says:

    I am jealous. Next snow that I will see is on a hike in the Sierras in August. Not much chance of skiing it then.

  9. Rick S Says:

    how long did it take to find a stick that size? Did you pack it with you up the climb so you’d have it to cross the river again?

    • dug Says:

      rick, in fact, i did pack the log up the hill. then, when skiing, i wedged it between my legs as a brake, so i could descend safely.

  10. bikemike Says:

    no matter what kind of snide/snarky (but mostly dumb and stupid) comments and critisisms i make, at the end of the day, i’m unbelieveably envious of where you guys live and play. for the life of me i can’t figure out why i love the mtns. so much and yet i live approx. 2′ 3″ above sea level, right in the middle of hurricane alley. maybe this helps explain why people still live in places like detroit and such.

    it’s going to be close to 90 degrees today and i’ve got my annual summer cold.

    o.k. i’m going to see if i can find some cheese to go with this whine.

    Is this Heaven…no, it’s Utah.

    • dug Says:

      Where all parents are strong and wise and capable and all children are happy and beloved. I don’t know. Maybe it was Utah.

  11. Grizzly Adam Says:

    I still think the Chute won.

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