Saturday, May 14, 2011

Mt Northcote - First Oz BC Day of 2011, 15 May

With all the snow we had last week I was keen to check out conditions on the main range. I had been chatting to Snow Blowey who made the call to check out Mt Northcote. He ended up pulling out so it was a solo mission.

I hit the trail at around 10am. Not an early start but it was a Sunday! My new boots, Dynafit Zzeus’, were a bit sore for the first half hour but quickly warmed up.

Approaching Mt Northcote

I crossed over Club Lake Creek and approached the Mt Northcote summit via Mt Clarke. The view over to the Carruthers chutes was awesome, cant wait to hit these one day.

I made the summit had a quick bite to eat and then hit it. The snow was nice at the top. On the lower slopes, I had to stick to the drainage lines to avoid big clumps of grass and heath and the odd rock.

Stoked first BC line of the oz 2011 season

After Mt Northcote I slapped the skins back on and hiked up Mt Lee. A bit of boot packing was required on some steep icey sections.

The view from the top was amazing and offered a great perspective of Mt Northcote with Mt Kosciuszko, Australia’s highest mountain, in the background.

Mt Clarke and Mt Northcote

The view to the west was also beautiful

I skied down Mt Lee, around 400m vertical and made it all the way back to the stepping stones at the Snowy River, a ski over 3.5km of gentle slope. The snow was nice and fresh in places and boiler plate in others. The slow ski back gave me an opportunity to take in the stunning views.

The slog up to the car was the usually hard haul after a long day touring. I got one last glance of the Mt Northcote peak before heading home satisfied with my first proper day skiing in Oz of 2011 under the belt.

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