Nisqually Ice Cliff

By:  Sam
May 28, 2011

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Aaron, again, led the way through a tricky section of rotten snow over steep glacial ice.

Joel followed..

… and Josh looked on.

I thought that this photo captured the steepness of the lower section of the line quite well. Moments before I took this picture, I experienced the most exciting part of the day. Pulling in above the rocks, I made a final jump-turn and, with my dynafit toe in full lock-out mode, stepped easily out of the ski. Reflexively, I sat down on top of it, and managed to stop it from sliding down the slope into a crevasse. Somewhat in shock, I skied the rest of the run as conservatively as possible hoping that my ski wouldn’t fly off. Upon later inspection at the house it appeared that I’d bent the base plate under toe wings allowing significant play in the toe wings.

Aaron led the way through the large cracks at the bottom to the relative safety of the glacier.

Joel followed.

A few high fives, and some de-layering, and we were on our way back to muir to collect some stashed gear. Once off the glacier, Aaron, who had hiked up from Paradise that morning, headed back down to his car.

While we played around with funny camera angles.

After getting down, I clicked out of my skis, thankful that there was no further incident. Joel, Josh, and I piled into my car and set off down the road towards the nearest restaurant, the Copper Creek Tavern, where a seriously overworked waitress did her best to hustle our gigantic burgers into our stomaches. My hunger temporarily stayed, I sped northward towards my house trying to outrace my exhaustion. Definitely a fun day.

A look back.

Continue Reading: «Prev 1 2 3 4

Read about the author:   Sam
Enjoy this TR? Read another: TR: South Early Winter Spire


  1. Peter
    wrote on May 28th, 2011 at 4:31 pm  
  2. chris
    wrote on May 28th, 2011 at 8:35 pm  

    Sweet trip report, looked fun! Scary about your binding though..

  3. powhounddd
    wrote on May 28th, 2011 at 8:44 pm  

    wow Sam, another outstanding TR from the Land Where Winter Doesn’t (seem to want to) End!

    I have to stop reading these! Makes me jones pretty hard for some gnar.

  4. icelanticskier
    wrote on May 28th, 2011 at 10:17 pm  

    time for markers? ;)

    awesome report and day well spent!



  5. MadPatSki
    wrote on May 28th, 2011 at 11:00 pm  


    Nicely played and scary about the ski.

    Again, wow. Congrats.

  6. justin
    wrote on May 28th, 2011 at 11:57 pm  
  7. Lionel Hutz
    wrote on May 29th, 2011 at 6:17 am  

    Excellent, Excellent work Sam.
    Question re Dynafits…no brakes on them right? Well would it behoove the BC skier to throw a pair of leases on the ski akin to the telemarker steeze?

  8. Anonymous
    wrote on May 29th, 2011 at 10:03 am  

    The skis do have brakes but they wouldn’t have done much good on a slope that steep. Leashes might be in my future on steep lines

  9. the powder jew
    wrote on May 29th, 2011 at 7:35 pm  

    fucking gnarly guys…..I am always always so stoked when I see a new trip report from your crew. It makes my low end slack-fest up the auto road tomorrow seem so mediocre. Way to get after it.

  10. B. Melvin
    wrote on May 30th, 2011 at 2:30 pm  

    Great write up Sam. The bent plate is definitely something to think about for all of us that ski on the swap plates.

  11. Ben
    wrote on May 30th, 2011 at 10:11 pm  

    awesome report sam!

    I had a similar dynafit issue earlier this year… I cracked the metal toe piece in a similar way to the one that Lou Dawson posted about earlier this year, and it was basically unskiable. Dynafit was great about getting me a new one quickly though, their warrantee dept is top notch!

  12. icelanticskier
    wrote on May 31st, 2011 at 9:26 pm  

    fritschi, no fuss, no discussion, no fiddle :)


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