This trip began with the pleasant surprise of discovering that we could drive to within a couple hundred yards of the Pioneer Gulch trailhead before being stopped by lingering snow banks. We strapped our skis onto our packs and started hiking through the forest at 7:45. We were able to skin up and begin skiing after hiking almost a mile. The sky was clear and the air temperature climbed from 55 degrees to almost 80, so a few stops were necessary to shed layers of clothing. This was the kind of day where sun reflecting off the snow found any spots of exposed skin that we missed with sunscreen and a few of us wished we had brought more than the recommended two liters of water! One climber was feeling under the weather, so he stopped in some shade on the ridge at 7,400' elevation below the false summit. Fortunately, he was in a good position to see the open bowl above and watch the rest of us descend from the top. Several climbers selected their downhill run about halfway between the false summit and true summit, while Dave, Megan, and Brian continued ascending the remaining 300' to begin their descent. Skiing the open slopes was a blast! The snow was a good “spring corn”, but it changed to “mashed potatoes” the lower we got. After meeting up on the southwest ridge, we followed the “buddy system” for the descent through the trees. Those with similar skiing skills paired up so that we could keep track of each other as we carved down the slopes, or in the case of less experienced skiers, traversed back-and-forth, trying to stay out of tree wells. We made it back to the trailhead by 5:30, looking forward to the next time! Climbers were Terry Kneen and Obsidians Chrissy Anderson, Megan Henning, Roy McCormick, Gordon Sayre, Dave Jensen, Larry Huff (assistant leader), and Brian Hamilton (leader.) <img border="2" src="images/rm20090516-002.jpg" width="800" height="449">
Starting out - photo by Roy McCormick <img border="2" src="images/bh20090516-001.jpg" width="800" height="600">
Megan and Dave on the summit - photo by Brian Hamilton <img border="2" src="images/rm20090516-003.jpg" width="800" height="449">
Tree Tango - photo by Roy McCormick  .Members: Gordon Sayre, Brian Hamilton, Larry Huff, Dave Jensen, Roy McCormick, Chrissy Anderson, Megan Henning. Nonmembers: Terry Kneen.
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