Monday 31 December 2012

Cham Chutes and Finger Chutes, Dec 30th

Daily Vert: 750m
Total Vert So Far: 15,015m

After a successful pre-nightshift at work tour yesterday, we decided to do the same again today.  Nothing to ambitious (in terms of length), just one lap of Decker, hopefully via the Finger Chutes.  I've To get to Decker this time we went via the Cham Chutes.  For my money the most over rated lines in the Blackcomb backcountry.  Consistently rocky, no flow to speak of, and always, always rancid snow.    But this trip served to reinforce my opinion, and I'll be making an effort not to ski them again for the rest of the season.  We powered up Decker and popped over the cornice just 36 minutes after leaving the toe of the Glacier.  After a quick snack we headed over to the Finger Chutes.  I have skied this line once before, about 3 years ago, and I remembered it as being the steepest, scariest, and most exposed line I had ever skied.  Since then I have bagged quite a few other exposed descents, including Hourglass on Tremor, the North Face of Fitzsimmons, as well as Summit Chute and the North East Face of Fissile.  I was hoping that with my additional experience the Finger Chutes wouldn't seem quite such an undertaking.  I was wrong.  Despite 3 years of additional experience, the Fingers are still the steepest, scariest, and most exposed line I have skied.  I suppose Summit chute on Fissile comes close, as it is equally steep and much much longer, but none of the other lines even get a look in.  Previously I had skied the middle finger, which is more open but with more consistent exposure, and today we decided to ski the line on skiers right, which is narrower, but slightly less exposed once you are in.
Benoit went first and snowboarded down smoothly and calmly.  I went next and made far to many hop turns for my own good, essentially skiing it one turn at a time in order to prevent the accumulation of any sluff.  I doubt any onlookers would have been mightily impressed with my conservative approach, but I made it down safely and without incident. Another great day in the bag!

 Looking down the middle finger

 Clearly not my photo.... Found this on the TGR forums a couple of years ago and it really highlights the exposer.  If you know who took this photo feel free to let me know.  Who ever you are, props on a sick shot.  The tracks in this photo are down middle finger, today we skied the line on lookers left of this shot.

Finger Chutes GPS track

Finger Chutes Elevation Profile.

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