Sarah and I joined Sam, Aaron, and Mike for a fun day of snow-filled adventures in the Williams Lake basin. Sam drove us all in his freshly cleaned (5:20 A.M. that morning) Club-Wagon.
Kachina Peak says, "Good morning."
First on our agenda was Lake Fork Peak. After skinning as high as the felt would allow, Aaron and Mike bust out a boot pack to the summit.
Sarah making her way up as Wheeler towers across the valley
Sarah scampering up the summit ridge in howling winds
Sam anxious to drop off the summit and get out of the wind
Aaron and Sarah enjoying a windy summit
Sarah navigating some challenging, wind hammered snow just off the summit
Aaron finding nice, soft snow below the summit
Sarah joining in the fun
Next we climbed up Sin Nombre at the southern end of the basin.
looking down the long ridge line from Sin Nombre's summit to the top of Lake Fork Peak
Blanca Group in the distance
Aaron making his first turn off the summit with Lake Fork behind him
Sarah picking her way through the wind scoured snow
Sarah finding some powder
dropping into the main chute in the middle of Sin Nombre's north face
Sarah exiting the chute and getting on the throttle
Mike making tracks of his own
Our final destination of the day was Wheeler Peak. We skinned to the top of the snow on Wheeler's south west face. After dropping our skis ~400-ft below the summit, we scrambled up the talus to the summit.
Sarah standing atop a windy Wheeler Peak with Lake Fork and Kachina (L to R) in the background
Taos Ski Valley, as seen from the summit of Wheeler
Sin Nombre and Lake Fork (L to R)
hiding from the wind and taking in the views
Mike snapped a quick photo of Sarah and me before retreating from the wind.
heading back to our skis
Even though it was cut short by a few hundred feet, this was still a pretty long ski line. We want to go back and get it from the summit. Some day.
Sam shredding in the late day light
Sarah on the large open slopes beneath the summit
Sam working his way into the trees
loading up the van after a fun day in the mountains with a great group of friends