It’s funny how things happen. After those last few days I was wondering what I would get up to that could equal any of those adventures. I have a huge list but it is tough to decide what to do. I had not even thought of Bagheera when Mark proposed it to me.
Last year ,while I was in my CAA level 2 avalanche course, a herd of people climbed and skied this peak. I am not sure but it seemed like the first time anyone had skied it and it happened to be 11 of them. Needless to say I was excited that someone had finally skied the south face but also a little jealous that it was not me.So when Mark’s suggested going up there I was excited.
We left the car at 6.15 am and toured up and over Balu pass and towards Bagheera. We needed urgency since this face is huge and if it began to warm up we would be scared and screwed. SO we moved quickly and soon enough we were ski touring up the face. Yes touring! the snow had a nice 2 cm breakable sun crust that allowed us to skin 2000 feet of the 3000 foot ascent. The sun never peaked out and we felt really comfortable with the climb, the previous slides had all frozen over and nothing was warming up.
Boot packing along the ridge we summitted by 12.30 and then it all began. This was the first time Mark and I had ever toured together sans chaperone. Our first outing just the two of us. By this point we were surprised that we were not really pushing the envelope. Maybe we didn’t need a chaperone!
We worked our way down the ridge, put on a rope and began searching out the entrance to the north chute. Switching belayers we cut cornice and searched hard for an easy entrance. No easy entrance into this thing.
All we could see looking down was ridges, rocks, super steep slopes and some cliffs; but beyond this we could also see a beautiful chute that curved away down the mountain. Belaying our way around we finally figured out an OK approach. Mark went first and I belayed him down 100 ft, he set up a deadman anchor with his snowboard and gave me a bit of security as I sideslipped down. Ridiculously steep, almost tough to say, 70 degrees, seriously steep.
We slowly worked our way down, finding deep moats near the rocks to belay from and finally we were in. And it was still steep! But all went well and we leapfrogged down and skied to the valley floor. A 4000 foot run.
But by now it was 4.30 pm and we were very far from home. up Ursus creek to Mcgill pass by 6.30 were I finally got some cell service. Called home to make sure no one was worried and we skied to the road by 7.45. Tough hitchhiking at 8 pm but luckily some highway workers saw us and sent someone down to pick us up and bring us back to our truck. Home by 915 pm, maybe we do need to be chaperoned!