Turns All Year: Up to Montezuma Basin, Colorado yesterday for August backcountry skiing. Had a terrific time with everything: a bit of skiing, exploring old mine ruins, 4-wheeling, laughing at the Forest Service drone on a quad who appeared to be going around enforcing the ridiculous campfire ban they implemented a few weeks ago (we’re having one of our wettest summers in years.) The Montezuma snow surface is quite suncupped but you can still find some smoother spots for turns. Fairly long descents are still possible. We only did about 500 vertical, as the weather looked like lightning was possible (the clouds cleared later — we should have stayed).
|Backcountry skiing on the lower part of the
summer Montezuma snowfield, Castle Peak, Colorado (near Crested
Butte and Aspen).
|Louie finds a spot for a turn between suncups. The early snows of September usually fill these in — winter here we come!|
Montezuma backcountry skiing conditions in detail: The snow is still in from the from the upper parking area up to near the crest of the northwest ridge above the upper basin. Somewhat suncupped but still skiable if you take it easy in some areas. Jeep trail is in the best condition we’ve ever seen it (super rough). The driving was as fun as the skiing!
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.