Handies Peak 14,048′ East Couloir 5/15/2012

Its funny how things seem to just work themselves out lately. I just seem to believe in a positive outcome and this seems to lead to good things happening. After dinner in Lake City I got a call from a 14ers.com member about hooking up for Handies. Sweet I had a partner, well he never showed up but I ran into Rob Steinmetz at the trailhead. We’ve skied a bunch together and he’s even in my book I’m almost finished with. We debated about when to start in the morning and then I FINALLY got a good nights sleep. Off at 6:20am we made fair time to the base of the East Couloir up Grizzly Gulch. After a short discussion we decided that we were in the right place and up we went. Snow climbing is really fun. We topped out on the couloir and headed for the ridge and on to the summit. Today was warmer than yesterday with less of a freeze the night before. We knew sluff would be an issue but also knew that it would be manageable. The views up top were great as it was also clearer than yesterday.

We skied off the summit down the ridge to the northeast bowl. Dropped in and skied nice blown in new snow and worked our way down and over towards the skiers right edge. The skis came off for about 100′ of contouring ascent to the top of the East Couloir. Then we yo-yoed down the couloir enjoying the steeps. At the bottom we decided to call it a day due to the warm temps.

It was great to see you again Rob. Looking forward to our next trip to the mountains my friend. Enjoy the pics, if you have any more I’ll add them.

Heading up Grizzly Gulch
Feeling yesterday at this point
The line
Making progress
Hmmm I think this is it
Topping out
Rob nearing the top of the couloir
The entrance
Its a beautiful day in the neighborhood.
"American Peak" and it's north couloirs
More views.
Rio Grande Pyramid
Summit Shot
Summit Shot
The snow here was really nice
Sweet
Steep entrance
Such a fun line
Always love that first turn
Hmmm which line should I take
Rob decides
Looking good
Quality for this season
The apron was a bit hollow
The stoke level was high though
The line
Yeah the stoke level was very high
A look at the line from Redcloud
"American Peak" Couloirs
Niagara Peak looking awesome as always
On the road to Silverton
So many options down that way

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