Middle Teton Glacier


It has been a fun month and a half of Spring skiing - ticking off some lines from the 50 Classics book, skiing something different everyday and doing it with new people. We, Sam and I, tried for another Classic, the Middle Teton Glacier; a 5000', 7 mile day to the summit, 55 degree at it's steepest slope.

The lake didn't give us alot of confidence to cross, especially at the end of the day.

The snow started just outside the parking lot but we hiked fairly far into the park with hiking shoes and skis on our back. It was a crisp morning, temperatures sitting around 40 degrees. A little warm for 5:30am. We planned on summitting at noon since the high for the day, in the valley, was 65 degrees.


Skinning under the South

Heading further up canyon we hit snow and started skinning on a frozen snowpack. Hiking into Garnet Canyon you could see remnants of one or two slides that had happened in the past week or so. With this in mind we tried picking up the pace a little as our window of safety [time] was running low.

The night prior we decided on climbing the SW Couloir and bumping over to the Glacier. I think this isn't the standard route but after being on the Glacier I'm glad we went this way because it's just so damn steep on the glacier. Plus the SW starts at 11,000' making the skin longer and the bootpack shorter.

Soft deuces
SW couloir

The SW was tight, a little low in snow but we made quick work to the summit. Unfortunately we summitted at 1pm. We both bonked real hard down low but now being on top we had to get down and surprisingly the Glacier looked good to ski.

Summit shot to the South
 Ready to ski looking down on Nez Perce
"Dude, I can get one of those steep-skiing-with-ski-tips-showing photos people like on Instagram!"

Sam went first and ski cut, jump turned a bunch letting loose a few wet slides. It skied like that the whole time. It wasn't the safest thing to do but we did what we could to mitigate risk. The skiing itself was intense though - very steep and hard because of cutting the surface snow.  Anything in the shade (a majority of it is) was still bombproof and made digging in an edge difficult. Bottom section was what we were looking for, beautiful corn.


 The Grand in the back and perspective of how steep 51-59 degrees is. I've heard it's 55.

I'm stoked on the line but not so stoked on my fitness level right now. Wish we would of got to the summit earlier and we would have if we both didn't crash hard. At any rate, we ticked another Teton classic off and Sam got his first ever summit in the Tetons.


Updated Photos from February 22, 2020, when it was much better skiing






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