Sunny Days in the Blackcomb Backcountry

Jan 22 2010

words and photos by Sharon Bader and Lee Lau unless otherwise noted.

The day we've all been waiting for. Blue skies, blower pow and stable conditions! This story contains A LOT of pictures. Most are reference ones as well as ones of us killing it!

We head up Decker Glacier again, the crevase is still there! There is an easier boot pack up through the cornice now, we went around.

Tim was MOTORING on his Dukes/XXXL's must be all that road riding!

Once around Decker we opt for the high and direct line over to Pattison. The conditions were Moderate in the alpine so we went straight across Trorey. Lee has always wanted to ski the North side of Trorey, but there are so many other options in the area. You can also ski down to Trorey glacier and back up to Pattison.

High and fast line.

This route always has some boot packing.

Skiing across Trorey.

Normally you have to boot pack this pitch, we were able to skin up most of it and boot back only the last section.

Tim was on fire in the lead!

Peter on the back side of Pattison. Lots more stuff to ski back there!

Peter's first day touring this year! As a father of three he doesn't get out much.

View of Decker and the Spearhead from the top of Pattison. Don't Swill is just to the lookers left of the S on Spearhead.

Getting ready to drop into Pattison.

Trailbreaker Tim gets first dibs!

Tim drops in, there was some sluffing in the 1st 10cm but that was about it!

Lee at the top of Pattison getting ready to drop in.

We then skinned up a small wedge section beside Pattison that we're calling Pattison Wedge. The snow here was pretty good too!

Peter likes the pow!

Tim's turn.

Sharon's turn!

We stop for a break before heading back to Decker. Our turns are in the back!

Closer look at Pattison Wedge. Our lines and the group that was behind us on Pattison took the next slope which came out lower down on the Glacier. An objective for next time!

We head back up Decker. Despite the look of wind it wasn't that packed in yet!

Taking off our skins in preparation for 19th Hole off Decker.

One of the entrances to 19th Hole.

Peter drops in.

He likes the steep and deep!

My turn, not as stylin as Peter but I'm only half German!

Looking back up at our tracks!

Our last climb up to Disease Ridge, nice view of Decker!

The view of Decker.

Below are photo's of the mountains in the area.

Tremor with hourglass looking pretty filled in.

James Turner.


Fissile, you can see two tracks down Saddle Chute.

Fitzsimmons, Lee's nemesis.

View of Flute and Oboe from Decker.

View of Pattison from the Spearhead


Rainbow across the valley.

Beautiful day in the Blackcomb backcountry from Lee Lau on Vimeo.

Pattison on Google Maps - zoom in if its not already.

View pattison in a larger map 

Elevation Profile - ~1300m of climbing!

Google Earth Image