Sh*t for Brains Couloir

Location: Just East of A-Basin Ski Area
Elevation: 11,000 at bottom, 13,000 at top
This was the first snowboard-mountaineering type climb I have done that required the use of crampons and ice axe to reach a sweet descent and I’ve gotta say…I’m hooked.  The lines that you can reach by climbing are far more appealing and challenging then the everyday mellow black   diamonds at the    bottom of Breckenridge.  Andrew, Jon, Chris and Joe accompanied me on an early rising morning to attempt this quick up and down and to the bar kind of day at A-Basin.  After leaving Denver at 6 AM we hit some pretty inclement weather up in the mountains in the form of cold sleet/rain with some pretty poor visibility.  We got to the parking lot and snagged a front row spot on the A-Basin’s world renowned beach and geared up for the climb.  It wasn’t until half way up the approach when I started post-holing into some pretty deep snow in the trees that I realized how stupid I was for not grabbing my snowshoes at 5:45 when I ran out my door.  I was pretty wiped after walking/crawling to the bottom  of the steep chute but adrenaline took over as we looked up on some sweet terrain while we threw our crampons for the steep (45-50 degree) stuff.  A nice boot pack from someone’s previous climb led us to the top where we strapped up and ripped down some pretty scrappy snow.  All in all a good morning and some good practice for the Bell Cord Couloir in a couple weeks.
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-Tyler Grubb

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