Today is our day to go hut to hut from Durrand Chalet to Moloch Hut. Of course, first we have to have breakfast and then pack and ooops…. who left the frigging boots in the lounge!!??!!! These are one of the 12 things to do while Ruedi is at the Moloch Hut – right up there with half off on beer and wine; and bonfire on the helipad!
Our route will take us from the chalet and contouring north of the Needle Ice Fall, up through the Eagle Icefall over the Diamond Platform and up to Philharmonic peak. From there we ski to Philharmonic Glacier and then over to a ridge close to Mt Fang, down Kaleidescope (Fang Creek), back up to Fang Col and then down to the Moloch Hut.
Another ski across the Durrand Glacier – ho hum. Another stunning icefall view ho hum. Climb up, go down …. repeat. Bill and Steve on the Philharmonic Glacier descending.
Steve again monopolizing the lens
Seriously, by now the legs are starting to get into the rhythm of up and down and feeling better day after day. Even the odd icy exposed traverse with a 100 foot slide down a ice tube if you lose an edge (this one approaching Mt. Fang) isn’t too bad as long as you’re one of the first on it.
The other group is at the top of the ridge approaching Mt Fang – none the worse for wear for their stay at the Moloch Hut. They’ve apparently just finished a big 2700 foot run and its now our turn. Kaleidoscope – I can only guess its named that because the run is so long you’re seeing stars at the end of it. Here I go …. wheeeeeeeeeee
The view from the top looking down the first section
This run just keeps going and going – beautiful constant steepish grade; deeper into the shade of the valley walls the further you go. Ths part is close to the bottom.
Bill C takes his turns; I can’t say I’ve skied with many tele’ers who attack the fall-line the way this guy does.
Alan takes a tumble nicely testing slope integrity for us!
We then have a long skin back up as what goes down must now go up – to paraphrase Rochus. The top of the run was about 2700m. The bottom of Kaleidoscope where we finished our run is 1927m 0434351 5682444. This is almost 2600 feet of vertical run! The climb is in sun so we’re pretty nicely cooked approaching Fang Col. Luckily we “only” have to climb to 2300m/7600ft. But now we have to drop in through this tight little chute down a north face to ski the last run down to the Moloch Hut. Here goes Steve…..
The setting for Durrand Chalet is beautiful yet Moloch Hut’s surroundings defy description. Let’s say that a picture speaks a thousand words.
I hope this next panorama puts a shiver in the back of anyone who has the privilege of standing near the Moloch Hut surrounded by huge mountains and glaciers. I hope it brings you back to this awesome place in some small way.
and last but not least - sunset over Moloch. Final total for the day is a very relaxed 1590m