Steep Skiing -NW Face of Mt. Matier

Sarah and I had plans for a two day traverse this weekend but got a bit scared off by the weather forecast. Instead, we decided to take advantage of Saturday (the more optimistic looking day) and try to get in some steep skiing along the Duffy Lake Road.

We left the car at 8:30 am and skinned up Cerise Creek and onto the Anniversary Glacier between Joffre and Matier. Several hours later found us at the base of the NW Face. We skinned as high as possible and then transitioned to bootpacking on a steep slope. Stopping at a sheltered rock just below the summit, we dug out a platform and switched back to skis.

Our run down the face was excellent with a nice layer of powder over firm snow. We continued down the entire length of the glacier and hit spring conditions partway down. The transition from powder to slush was quick with about 200 meters of scary crust. Below that, the rest of the skiing and the way out was on nice spring snow. 

All in all, we skied 9hrs car-to-car, well over 1500m of vertical, and now we have the rest of the weekend to catch up on work and relax in Squamish.

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