Lee’s Birthday – South Face of Colefax

By:  Sam
June 24, 2012

The start of the line was deceptively easy: smooth corn and approachable slope angles. The Twins Sisters Range is visible in the background.

Tenuous turns. Photo: Lee

We could see that the line choked out into a nasty runnel, but it appeared that the slopes to skiers right would offer a bypass.

Things got steep, and they got rotten. Near where Lee is standing in this photo, I made a jump turn and almost fell through the snow it was so rotten. I managed to punch into it with both hands to prevent a fall, but it was a close call and I cut skiers left to avoid further drama. Lee is still in the thick of it in this photo.

“Check those edges!” – look closely and you can see that about 6 inches of snow has peeled away above Lee.

Once we cut left and negotiated the runnel, we were through the hard part and able to enjoy the remaining turns to the lower Deming Glacier.

We took a little time to eat some food and plot our escape from the Deming Glacier.

You don’t see that every day. We’ll, maybe you do if you’re a mountain guide like Lee.

We roped up for the climb out of the lower Deming. It was hot out and the glacier was a maze of huge cracks and weakening bridges. Yet another instance where I was very glad to be on skis.

Eventually we reached the pass again and decided to ski straight down the Coleman Glacier, a way that I’ve never skied before, and an awesome way to avoid all the traversing typical of skiing the Coleman.

Happy Birthday Lee!

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Read about the author:   Sam
Enjoy this TR? Read another: TR: Sleeper Days


  1. mtl_ripper / powhounddd
    wrote on June 26th, 2012 at 6:03 pm  

    Looks intense!!
    I wish I lived close to reasonable summer skiing. Alas…

  2. Jake
    wrote on June 26th, 2012 at 8:28 pm  

    Ugh. I can’t stand all the skiing in my face. It may be time to move to the PNW.

    Way to get after it recently. Some great looking stuff.

    • Sam
      wrote on June 26th, 2012 at 9:03 pm  

      Its why I moved to the PNW. ;) Come visit sometime

    • MadPatSki
      wrote on June 26th, 2012 at 9:22 pm  

      Sam, I’m flying into the PNW tomorrow :) Now I need to get packing for my trip.

    • Sam
      wrote on June 26th, 2012 at 9:28 pm  

      Awesome! What’s on the docket for your trip?

    • MadPatSki
      wrote on June 26th, 2012 at 9:38 pm  

      Mostly liftserved. Wed night : Portland; Th: Timberline and return to airport; Fri & Sat: Bachelor; Sun: Crystal; Mon: Rainier/Muir Camp??? and Tues: Timberline then back East. Accommodations were booked by Mr. C (except 1st night):Bend 2 nights, Crystal 2 nights and TLodge 1 night. That is the plan that was discussed.

    • Sam
      wrote on June 26th, 2012 at 9:56 pm  

      Awesome that sounds like a fun trip. Enjoy your time here

  3. MadPatSki
    wrote on June 26th, 2012 at 9:05 pm  

    I love my June birthday turns, unfortunately it’s a rare occasion.

    mtl_ripper, summer skiing is an easy flight away. :0

  4. jake L.
    wrote on June 26th, 2012 at 9:18 pm  

    Mmmmm June turns…a guy doesn’t post for a bit and someone goes and steals his namesake, geez!

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