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Hundred Days 010

Taking the Headwall Head-On



Day 010: 12/19/11 – Taking the Headwall Head-On

Written by Rob Cocuzzo

According to a couple of members of the ski patrol I caught up with at the top of Apres Vous, four crust layers threaten the stability of this year’s snowpack thus far. In an effort to combat these weak layers, members of the patrol have diligently boot-packed and sidestepped prone areas such as at The Headwall, Tower III, and the Expert Shoots. They hope that breaking down these crust layers will improve bonding when the snow does fall. The painstaking measures are especially visible and extensive above the Bridger Restaurant on the southeast aspect of the Headwall where countless boot prints have been set with bewildering thoroughness. The exhaustive effort conjures up images of the incident in December 2008 when an intentionally triggered avalanche descended upon the newly built restaurant, burying and injuring seven members of the patrol (all were rescued and survived). More so, the sight inspires gratitude for the work being done by the patrol to make the mountain as safe as it can be for the rest of us mere mortals.


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