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Thursday, April 14, 2005

Alpine Bowls, Tree Skiing and Open Cut Blocks

For many skiers and boarders, tree skiing is the essence of the backcountry skiing adventure. The East Ridge at Chatter Creek offers a wide selection of tree skiing in all weather conditions. Below about 7000 ft elevation, the lower East Ridge offers old burns, living forest, open glades and wide-open cut blocks. Above the tree line, the upper East Ridge offers large alpine bowls and steep open slopes with generous vertical drop.

The East Ridge Super Road leaves Vertebrae Lodge to the south, crosses the Home Run cut block and climbs the western flank of East Ridge. Continuing to the south, it crests the ridge at it's south end, which is called the Nose. From the Nose, the road follows the crest of the East Ridge north to a point on Super Spruce, high above and a little south of Steph's Thumb. The ridge continues to meet Stovepipe Mountain where it bisects the Jo-Pal ski run.

This photo gallery is part of the Chatter News Weblog (blog). Click on any Chatter News photo to enlarge it, use the browser's back button to return.                                Return to Road Network Index

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

The Nose, at the south end of the East Ridge. On the left is the Right Nostril and the old burn known and the Enchanted Forest, opening onto large cut-blocks below. On the right is the Left Nostril and a succession of tree runs and open glades including Sweet & Sour, the Fat, the Skinny, Sweet Cheeks, EMOP, Percy's Knob and others. On the right is another view of the east side of the Nose. Scroll down for views of the Fat and the Skinny.

On the right are two more aerial views of the lower East Ridge showing more of the left Nostirl of the Nose and the glades known as Sweet & Sour, the Fat and the Skinny.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

East Ridge Topography and Ski Runs

Chatter Creek's East Ridge Topography and Ski Runs
The East Ridge topography and named ski runs. The contour lines are at 100 ft intervals. Click the image to enlarge it. The East Ridge Super Road marks the crest of the ridge from the Nose, in the south to Super Spruce. The East Creek pickup road traverses the base of East Ridge, just above the tenure boundary (heavy line) which follows the valley bottom between East Ridge and Vertebrae Ridge. The Jo-Pal to East Creek (Super Jo-Pal) ski run follows the tenure boundary from upper Jo-Pal to the end of the road (unmarked arrow).

On the east side of the ridge, EMOP, the Skinny, the Fat, Sweet & Sour and the Left Nostril drop from the ridge to the pickup road. Primo, Salsa and Percy's Knob are partial runs between EMOP and the Skinny. EMOP & Percy's Knob have open glades at the top that drop into trees. Primo and Salsa provide mainly tree skiing while the Skinny and the Fat are mainly open glades with a band of trees at the top. There are a number of unnamed tree skiing runs on the east side of the ridge.

On the west side of East Ridge, Super Spruce and Super Bowl (not marked) are large open alpine slopes at the northern extent of the "Super Road". Low on "upper" East Ridge are two slide paths, Spruce Slide #1 and #2 that are accessed from Megahooped (Road to Vertebrae Glacier).
Starting from the ridge, well south of Super Spruce, are Bad Boys, MJ Gully, Tin Horn, Hidden Valley, Roller Coaster, and Brier, followed by the Enchanted Forest and the Right Nostril of the Nose. These largely provide tree skiing that opens onto a large cut block called, Lower Clear Cut. Of these runs, the Enchanted Forest is most often skied.
The Lodge site is shown at the lower left hand corner of the image. The Chatter Creek Main is the access road from Bush Arm of Kinbasket Lake

Monday, September 06, 2004

A view of the lower East Ridge from the Clamshell. Vertebrae Ridge rises in the background. Trees, old burns and cut blocks, the East Ridge has it all. When the snow on this west side gets sun-baked, the east side of the ridge remains protected and offers many glade runs including the Left Nostril of the Nose, Sweet & Sour, the Fat, the Skinny, EMOP, Percy's Knob and others. In between glades, there is all kinds of great tree skiing. The old burn visible on the Nose of East Ridge is the Enchanted Forest.

Photos on the right show skiing on the cut blocks visible on the lower slopes of the East Ridge. Click on the figure to enlarge it, then use the "Back" button on your browser to return.

Wide angle photo from the Clamshell showing the East Ridge and Vertebrae Ridge, behind it. The Nose and the Enchanted Forest are out of the picture to the right, Megahoop and Jo-Pal can be seen at the far left, on the side of Stovepipe Mountain.

Both sides of the East Ridge provides wonderful tree skiing. Click on the image to the right for the names of ski runs and features in this panorama of East Ridge.

The Enchanted Forest, looking northwest from the Nose in the direction of Vertebrae Lodge.

Powder Skiing at Chatter Creek An old post that's worth re-showing. Jamie enjoying some fine powder on the Nose. The trees in the old burns are gnarly, but they are widely spaced and easy to ski.  It's way too much fun!  Man, I can't wait to get back!      Photo credit to Dave Harvey.

Don Steedman caring for the Pink Purse, somewhere on the eastern side of the East Ridge. Here's the same play, different actor .....>>

Moving north from the Nose, along the crest of East Ridge, a succession of ski runs are passed, both to the west and to the east. Here are some of the glades on the east side of East ridge.

The wide glades are Sweet & Sour, the Phat and the Skinny. The photo on the right shows the Skinny and further up the east side of the East Ridge. EMOP, Primo, Salsa and Percy's Knob are hidden in the trees, or are further to the north (sidebar photo). "Sweet Cheeks" is also in this area. There are numerous lines of great tree skiing that are not named. The photos to the right show skiing in the Phat and the Skinny.

On the Skinny, Don says, "See your at the bottom", and he's gone.

Jo-Pal to East Creek from the East Ridge Super Road
Moving further north and higher on the East Ridge Super Road, we pass more runs on the eastern slope including EMOP (Early Morning Old Phart)and Percy's Knob. As we climb the ridge, the tree line drops away and the runs are more open.

From the East Ridge Super Road looking north towards Stovepipe Mountain. Upper Jo-Pal is the large opening in the far ridge, partly in shadow and to the left of the peak. What we call "Jo-Pal to East Creek" comes towards us into the valley between upper East Ridge on the left and Vertebrae Ridge, on the rignt.

Upper East Ridge lies between Vertebrae Ridge on the right, and Lodge Ridge, just visible at the lower left of the photo. The East Ridge Super Road ends on "Super Spruce", the open slope at the bottom right hand corner of the photo.

Click the image to the right to see the names of features and ski runs in this photo. The second aerial photo to the right shows Super Spruce and, just to the south, Super Bowl, two ski runs on the western side of East Ridge.

Click here for a tour and description of the ski runs on Stovepipe Mountain, which lies at the top center of the photo.

Click on any Chatter News image to enlarge it. Use the browser's "Back" button to return.

The East Ridge Super Road as it nears Super Bowl and its end on Super Spruce. Upper Lodge Ridge rises beyond the snowcat and, to the left, the "worlds largest halfpipe" towers over the Chatter Creek watershed and the Chatter glacier.     Thanks to Phil Fortier for this photo.

Click here for a tour and description of Lodge Ridge.

Super Spruce on the west side of upper East Ridge. Super Bowl is on the far right of the photo. Spruce Slide is on the left of center, mostly hidden after it turns in the trees.
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Sunday, September 05, 2004

End of the Super Road on East Ridge at Chatter Creek
A Chatter Creek guide checks out the eastern side of East Ridge. This imperfect collage shows ski tracks on the top of Super Spruce to the left, and Stovepipe Mountain and the Jo-Pal to East Creek ski run in the background, on the far right. The end of the East Ridge Super Road is in the background, in the middle of the photo. The relatively low crest of Lodge Ridge can be seen at the lower left. We don't know the name of the eastern slope of East Ridge, at this point, opposite to Super Spruce and Super Bowl. Scroll down for more views.

The guide checks out the east side of upper East Ridge (probably without the tracks). This run ends in tree skiing for the final drop into the East Creek valley. The last three photos on the right are of this ski run. Jo-Pal is in the background, in the center of the photo. Vertebrae Ridge is on the right.