Singing Pass – Whistler Backcountry

After the dump of snow in the previous Friday and Saturday’s festivities it was time to check out the backcountry of Whistler.

Singing Pass can be accessed from the lift at Whistler. Although generically referred to as Singing Pass; the area commonly skied are the peaks of Piccolo, Flute and Oboe – whimsically referred to as the Musical Bumps. We are heading for that area and up and over to Cowboy Ridge

Starting from the Harmony chair at Whistler, we ski down the Burnt Stew trail into Symphony Bowl and then leave the track onto Boundary Bowl. Then on go the skins and contour up and over Flute.

Gorgeous day. Black Tusk (2315m), the remnants of a volcanic cone is in the background. to the south. The other peak is Helm Peak at 2145m with Cheakamus Glacier in between. Old Peter leads with Peter W following and Sharon pacing at the back.

This area is remarkably accessible to backcountry. From doorstep to first slope takes literally about an hour and a half. Here is Peter W on the top of Flute with the view looking to mountains in the south-west..

Another view but looking south west down the valley past Cheakamus Lake

Sharon (left) and Old Peter (right) on Flute. No prizes for guessing who was on teles and who was alpine. Peter W.’s tracks are in the middle.

More powder goodness ….

and more … but this time Sharon

She’s having a good time!

What goes down must go back up – Sharon with Flute in the background. As you can see the backside of Flute is a popular yo yo.

Off we are to the next Bump. Me on Oboe; the snow is plenty deep in the trees.

More of my – can-you-fit-a-garage-door-through-those-legs technique

Sharon coming off Oboe trees

We’re quickly down again to the bottom of the Oboe at the Singing Pass trail again. Skin up, and away we go up Oboe again – Cowboy Ridge is in the background. Cloud is starting to roll in and obscures the peak of Mt Trorey (2461m).

Next we are on to Cowboy Ridge. To the south west of Cowboy Ridge is Fissile Peter W.

Then old Peter

The slope we pick to ski is tempting but is that oh-so-perfect 25 to 30 degree avvy prone so we skin a conservative line approaching Cowboy Ridge from the relatively gradual southern side along some trees.

By the time we’re at the top, the clouds have rolled in and it is overcast.

After finding a slope that isn’t windblown and digging a quick pit off we go for our last run of the day. Old Peter is first.

Next is Sharon

Then Peter W – that boy sure is smooooth…

Then its my turn

A view from the Singing Pass ski-out looking out over Fitzsimmons Creek. This is a very pleasant summer hike but a luge course in winter.

A very satisfying day; we’re off the Singing Pass ski-out at 4 pm just in time to watch the ant-like masses fight traffic off the hill.

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