Category Archive: Couloir

Reruns of articles first published in Couloir magazine.

Nov 13 2013

Rerun: Mt. Greylock’s Thunderbolt Ski Run

Back when the annual Thunderbolt Run was a phenomenon.

The Year of the Thunderbolt Muscat called me from the operating room late Tuesday night and said that because he was on call until six a.m. and had Wednesday off, and because, since it wasn’t a weekend, the nannie would be coming tomorrow to look after Rachel while his wife was at work, and because …

Keep making backcountry turns

Jul 15 2013

Profile: Yvon Chouinard

Yvon Chouinard - more than a mountaineer.

What’s wrong with getting lost? It may be the best trip of your life. You can’t get lost in this world anyway! In the lower 48, the most remote spot is a little piece of land in the Teton Wilderness—between Jackson and Yellowstone, 23 miles from the nearest road. That is as remote as you can get.

So that means you are within a day’s walk of a road. You can’t get lost. In fact, you should get lost. You know, if you don’t stick your neck out, don’t leave the ten essentials behind, you’re never going to have an adventure. You’ll never have what I consider to be a great day.

Oct 11 2012

Rerun: Time Changes

Couloir Vol. XIX-3, Dec. 2006

Every year the seasons change, and though the calendar says they begin at the same time, we know when they start and end are as predictable as the numbers on a roulette wheel. Sure there is a range of when it will occur, but the exact day, just as the exact number to bet on, changes all the time.

Aug 18 2012

Rerun: Rainey Design’s Hammerhead (v1)

The Hammerhead delivered unheard of freeheel control and remains the standard by which other tele bindings are judged for power and control.

  As a first year binding it is tough to rationalize awarding the Hammerhead an Editor’s Choice for telemark bindings. However, we couldn’t ignore the improvements either. When the beta version arrived it was clear that a new standard in control had been set, and for some that is reason enough. However, lots of folks …

Keep making backcountry turns

Aug 03 2012

TR: Skiing the Wickersham Wall – Pt. V

The upper half of the Canadian Route of Denali's Wickersham Wall.

© 1994 May 24, Summit Day Departing the all–too–familiar fester dome at 12:30 p.m. we were stalled by howling winds and an upper peak lenticular. Three hours later we loaded up and set off in calm winds with the lightest packs we’d carried. Cramponing up the final 2900 feet unroped on firm saastrugi was a …

Keep making backcountry turns

Jul 27 2012

Skiing the Wickersham Wall – Pt. IV

Official view from the NPS of Denali from the NE, looking up the Muldrow Glacier. South Peak on the left, North Peak on the right.

© 1994 1994, May 17, Day V on the Wall One more perfect day followed before a cloud bank appeared and we narrowly escaped a whiteout on the descent from 14,500′ to the serac camp at 11,000′. Skins worked well on the ascent to 12,800′, where the Canadian Route becomes a knife–edge ridge dropping away …

Keep making backcountry turns

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