Sunday Photo – Tasman Glacier Icefall, New Zealand

| June 29, 2008

This classic photo by Chris Figenshau has a funny background to it.

Wandering through the icefall

Steve Romeo, Chris Figenshau and I flew down to New Zealand to do some skiing in the Mt. Cook National Park with Kiwi local, Grant Guise.  We were flown into the Tasman Saddle hut and as we were shuttling our gear to the hut, a bag of pasta slipped out and shot down a blind couloir.  It wasn’t life-threatening, but later Grant and I skied down below the hut to look for it and found the couloir got steeper and steeper, then ended in a giant open maw of a crevasse!  The pasta was one with the glacier.

On the way back up to the hut, Grant and I decided to go right through the icefall as it was fairly short and we had ropes and plenty of time.  Chris was able to watch us from the top, and being a photographer, took a bunch of photos, but didn’t quite get what he was looking for, so he asked if all of us might want to do it again, which we did.  This time we had radios, so Chris was able to direct us through an outrageous path up the center of the icefall which we probably never would have found without his bird’s-eye view.  He shot this photo looking down from the hut, which is perched on a rock outcropping and falls away 100’s of feet on three sides.

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Category: Sunday Photo

About the Author ()

Andrew McLean lives in Park City, Utah and is a gear designer, writer, photographer, ski mountaineer, climber, Mountain Unicycle rider and father of two very loud little girls.

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