What's in this Area?
Submitted By: Franz2 on April 21, 2010
Views: 827 page views
As you drop off of the summit, you are on a large convex slope that is about 38°. This face is almost due East, so it tends to get sun pretty early. In the late spring, this slope can easily be corn by 9:30am at the top, so plan to be up there early. There are very few hazards on the top section, as there are no rocks or trees that are really poking through.
Depending on the size of the group, and your time frame, a lot of people will go back up and do multiple laps on the East Face from above the headwall, as this is where the most open terrain is. Once you get to the headwall, you need to keep a vigilant eye for the convexities and the sliding snow. These slopes measure at close to 45° and have been getting sun from the very first light. The tend to slide regularly, but as the snow gets heavier, they could probably do some damage. There are a few descent options to pick, that all wrap around the lake and back to the main gully.
There used to be an old mining cabin, that you can still see the remanants of just above the upper lake.
After the lakes, if you are done for the day, you should head to the right, so you can avoid the willows and connect back up with teh Crystal Lakes Road. You can take the road all the way back down to the trailhead if there is snow.[more]
A series of 30 to 45 degree chutes and rock gardens on the West side of Berthoud Pass. This area drops from the top of the pass down to the lower parking lot and contains pretty much everything from steep tree chutes, to rock gardens. Loads of hucking potential. Some areas in here are slide prone although they do receive a hell of a lot of skier traffic. Runs are typically about 1,000 feet of vert if you include skiing the Meadows off the top of the pass.
How to Get There
Couple of different methods
1) Skin up the west side of the pass to where you get to treeline, the summit and the scraggly bushes and trees and old antennae, and ski down to the North, not back towards the road. Usually takes between 15 and 30 minutes depending on how fast your crew is
2) Park in the parking lot, cross the road and skin until you hit the aquifer, follow it until you hit the chutes. Usually only advised if the weather is absolutly atrocious and really your just trying to stay below treeline
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