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Grand Traverse Direct, Gore Range, CO

Stepping up the level of exposure.  Climbing and skiing a direct line on the Grand Traverse of the Gore Range, CO.  Photos by Ben Markhart and Eric Haskell.

We went after the most direct line possible on April 11.  An interesting mix of nearly neve, rot and some blower pow made for tedious climbing and skiing.

I’d rate the climb at III 1,700-feet 70 degree snow M2.  We roped up for one short traverse over powder covered mixed climbing.

The ski was firm to corn, with a rappel over a 30-foot icefall.

Conditions were great for a fast and safe day, even if it was nerve-racking.  Only signs of snow instability were maybe 2-day old wind slab-crowns that were about 5-6 inches high.  No evidence of reactive wind-slab on our route.

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