Valkyr Adventures – backcountry skiing in Canada
Day 2 – Naumulten Mt. Circumnavigation
As our second day of Valkyr dawned the sun was still shining and the freezing levels were still at 3000m. This suggests a great day for a tour!
Carl, Meg and Linda joined us . We thought we’d do a ridge walk, so headed over to Naumulten Mt, down the south facing Crie de Coeur which was (surprise, surprise!) baked. We then decided to go back up the ridge and walk the perimeter of the Viking Zone. This zone is massive; with entry guarded by pure north facing slopes with steep rocky entrances and often, guarded by cornices.
The first crux entry via Viking Holler was inviting in a binary outcome deadly kind of way. Not liking our chances we kept going until we got to the safer Rune Stones access passing by Scrape and Pillage on the way.
Rune Stones ran well and seemed protected and benched enough that it could very well be a good skin up! We took Rune Stones to the lake at 1880m, had lunch and made our way back out. The exit is a crux of this zone. The elevation gain between 1880m and the upper lake at 2051m was lined with cliffs along both sides of the drainage splitting the face. There is one easy out via a bench and while we did not find that easy out-bench that provided easy cruising to the lake, Team Freedom ‘Murica (Greg and Mike) nailed the exit later in the week! This line is the white line on the attached Google Map.
We then gained the Grizzly ridge in the trees since we didn’t want to venture across the sliding south facing slopes to get to Norsemen lake to exit to Grizzly Gullet. Since we were taking our time on this day once we gained Grizzly ridge, we made the short descent, high traverse and skinned out through Dog Leg, up to Sunrise and back down for a sunset lap to the lodge. Very civilized and a good way to spend the day with a pleasant ramble circumnavigating Naumulten Mountain and getting quality turns.
Blue line was our tour this day.
The days always started with Jesse walking around in his underwear.
The trek up Naumulten, the inversion clouds surround us.
Variable snow on the south facing slopes of Crie de Coeur.
Sharon on Crie de Coeur
Looking over Vikings Zone
Looking down Viking Holler- what a run it could be given the right conditions!
Walking along Viking ridge, seeing if we can get down.
Looking to Rape and Pillage aka Scrape and Pillage
Looking down Rune Stones
Looking back up Rune Stones
Skiing down Rune Stones, Naumulten Ridge on the left into Grizzly gullet in the far background
Looking back up the the exit of Scrape and Pillage
Path from Viking Holler
Skinning across lower lake in Viking Zone, Scrape and Pillage in the back has two obvious lines; the direct and the path taking the safe zone of trees then down.
Skiing down Grizzly Bowl
After coming back up from Dog Leg to the top of Sunrise
Sunset ski down Sunrise
Back at the lodge for appies
Chillin in the Lodge
Google Earth Image from Above
Valkyr Map from Valkyr Adventures
While we as a self-guided group found that we could unlock the massive potential of some of the more gnar terrain of the Grizzly, Viking and Rollins zones with some effort we did notice in the hut log that many self-guided groups meandered around in the more mellow terrain. If your group is a tad more hesitant/less-willing to explore we’d suggest Zenith Guides (Evan Stevens). Lee and Evan geeked out on maps and terrain before getting to Naumulten; an exercise that proved fruitful!