It is one thing to read about the Caroline Face on the east side of Mt. Cook, but nothing beats standing at its base and trying to pick out a ski line down it.
In 2006, I took a trip down to this region of New Zealand with Chris Figenshau and Steve Romeo from Jackson Hole, and once there we met up with Kiwi local, Grant Guise (in Kiwispeak, Grant is pronounced “Grunt”). After a few days of skiing, it became obvious why New Zealand produces so many good alpinists and ski mountaineers – the conditions and mountains are burly! Between howling winds, storms and sheets of ice, we didn’t get much done, but it is one of those areas where just being there is oftentimes enough as it is such magnificent scenery.
The tip of the Tasman Glacier can just be seen at the bottom of the photo, which leads up to the precariously placed Tasman Saddle Hut and then the Kelman hut beyond that, which is a popular starting point for alpine climbs and ski descents. For more information on backcountry huts in New Zealand, check out the New Zealand Department of Conservation (DoC) website here.
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Category: Sunday Photo