Vantage Ridge

On Sunday, Christian Skyler Craig Matt and I skied some great snow off Vantage Ridge, a long ridge that separates Cerise and Caspar Creek.. I’ve skied past this area many times on the way into Cerise Creek, but this was my first time exploring the long easily-acessible runs off the ridge top. The snow quality was best on north facing aspect, and there was break-able crust on west aspects which kept us off “Cheque’s in the Mail,” a good looking run down an avalanche path into Cerise Creek.

Last minute phone calls were exchanged on Saturday night, with only a vague idea of where we were going skiing. We drove past the sunshine in Whistler, hoping to head to the Duffey to ski some less “Coastal” snow.

We only skied the north facing runs off Vantage Ridge, also known as the South Side. By sleeping in, we took advantage of a broken trail along the broad forested ridge until the ridge flattened out at 1900m. The skiing here was good enough to warrant coming back for more.

It had snowed all week, and then another 10cm of light-density snow fell throughout the day. This resulted in some great skiing, although a weak layer only 60cm deep stayed in the back of my mind as I skied down. Quite frequently there would be too much snow spraying up, making it a bit difficult to see where I was going.

Skyler skinning up for our third and final lap, with a view of the Duffey Lake road behind him.

A late afternoon view towards Joffre Peak.

Our last run of the day went down the east avalanche path. Although Baldwin mentions “that the small trees at the bottom are somewhat thick,” we had no trouble skiing down to the cutblock.

This is what happens when you drive over a pothole at 80km/h in a near-bottomed out vehicle loaded with five guys and gear. Luckily Christian had a full-sized spare, and we made it home without further incident.

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