Backcountry Skiing in Colorado

Skiing and Hiking in the Colorado Backcountry

Mt. Toll, June 26, 2009

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Time for another throwback trip report.  This time it was June 2009, we embarked on a trip to ski Mt. Toll in the Indian Peaks Wilderness.  Mt. Toll has a beautiful line off its east face which then juts around to its north slope.  All in all, about 1800 ft of vertical is skiable in the right conditions. 

Mt. Toll in all it’s glory

I asked Dave Gardner and Jon Joseph to come along for the trip.  None of them had AT gear at the time, but since most of the trip would be in hiking shoes, it didn’t matter.  I’m impressed with how hard core these guys were, hiking the entire trip in alpine gear couldn’t have been easy.

We started out on a beautiful bluebird morning, but Mt. Toll was shrouded in cloud.  As in most summer ascents we figured the clouds would only increase as we pressed on.

Mt. Toll hiding behind the clouds

Along the way, we sort of picked up another skier, Conner Clancy.  Conner was sporting a Tele set-up, but we didn’t discriminate!  Conner had skied Paiute Peak the month before, the same day I was skiing Audubon.  Here we were  month later back in the IWP for some more!

The trail up to Toll begins at the Brainard Lake Parking area and ascends towards Mitchell Lake and Eventually Blue Lake.  Eventually the clouds began to fade away and after some fun summer hiking we grabbed a bite to eat before the pitch steepened.  We transitioned into ski boots and began the bootpack up.  The ascent seemed exhausting at the time.  But eventually we made the summit and were rewarded with some soft corn snow on the way down.  Classic brilliant descent for sure!

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Author: ToblerX

Husband, Father and fun-lover. I love to ski, climb, hike and preferably all of them together!

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