We’ve got an excellent situation here in western Colorado during the midwinter months, when the lower altitude snowpack builds up and February/March powder storms renew the surface every few days. To enjoy this, I head west from Carbondale into the aspen forests of Marion Gulch and the backside of Ski Sunlight. Conditions today were perfect. We could have lapped it till our legs died, but a dawn patrol was required so we hit the top of Ski Sunlight, made pow turns down, and drove back to work. Snowmobile was used for short section of Marion sled trail, but not essential (trims about 1/2 hour of flat skinning off the trip to use a machine, but if you skin be very careful of snowmobiles on the trail’s blind curves).
WildSnow.com publisher emeritus and founder Lou (Louis Dawson) has a 50+ years career in climbing, backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering. He was the first person in history to ski down all 54 Colorado 14,000-foot peaks, has authored numerous books about about backcountry skiing, and has skied from the summit of Denali in Alaska, North America’s highest mountain.