Saturday, March 21, 2015

Wildcat Valley Trail

Last weekend we decided to celebrate Bruno's upcoming birthday with a backcountry ski adventure.  

Ever since skiing in New Hampshire in the early 2000's we had wanted to try out the Wildcat Valley trail from the top of Wildcat Mountain into the town of Jackson.  This ungroomed trail drops off the backside of the downhill ski area and descends nearly 2500' to the valley.  

It was snowing when we awoke on Sunday morning and we were the first party on the trail.  After icy drop-in the trail was superb skiing for the first few miles.  We were soon overtaken by another party who seemed to be in a hurry for fresh tracks, but after that we had the trail to ourselves.  In places the trail was steep and hardpacked, and a little too fast for our skiing abilities!  Hence we had a few ungracious wipe-outs and more swearing than would be normally accepted on a Sunday.  Despite this we had a good time and made very fast time. 

The last few miles to the road at Dana Place were rather tortuous as the trail had begun to fall apart under the previous weeks warm weather and the combination of large holes and an icy crust did not make for smooth, fast, or graceful progress.  We did make it back to the car in less than guidebook time and we finished up our adventure with lunch at the trailhead.

I think that a return visit may be in order next year after we have taken a few lessons to sharpen up our telemark turns!


 On the trail

 Humor in the woods...
Getting near to the end

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