North Mt Massive (Jan. 2009, June 2013, June 2014)

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On January 18, 2009, Bob Portmann, Jonathan Kriegel, and I got high on the east ridge of North Mt. Massive -- a very nice peak -- but were too far away from the summit to go for it. Skiing was heinous, but Bob still had fun. The big bowl on the horizon, center, is Africa Bowl.

On June 6, 2012, while hiking to both summits of Champion, we spotted this line on the SW side of North Mt Massive: the couloir left of the summit in the center.

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On June 3, 2013, Katie Larson, Starr Jamison, and I woke early and headed to the North Half Moon Trail to give it a try. The line was in, the ascent was fine, if a bit tiring at the very end, and the descent down the southwest facing couloir was in perfect corn conditions. Here the line (can call it Luna) is in the center; our ascent was by the left slopes, with some use of ski crampons. The difference between early June 2012 and 2013 is remarkable!

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The view west from the summit was spectacular, especially the nearby high peaks Oklahoma and Deer.

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Here is Starr in the middle of it, with the entrance, and the summit of the peak, visible above:

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And Katie in the middle of the line.

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On June 14, 2014, Chet Roe and I headed to the same area. There was much less snow, so gaining the ridge to the Divide was tedious. We were tired at 13900 and so skied the broad face heading back down just west of the Luna couloir. It was fairly steep for a bit. Ski conditions were fine.


The face: We skied the large bowl left of center, which starts at 13900 ft.

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Gaining the ridge was a minor headache.

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Finally we gained the easy terrain approaching the Continental Divide, and we were able to skin easily to our point this day, at 13900 feet.

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And the reward: A wide-open ski run in a great alpine environment. Here Chet is about to disappear over the roll.

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