Fairy Meadows 2008 – Swan Creek Trees – Outpost Trees

Words by Lee Lau. Photos by Lee Lau, Sharon Bader, Mike McArthur, Jeremy Roche and Bill Carey. All rights reserved

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Day 5, 6 and 7

The next few days were a powder feast. There really wasn’t much in the way of views so I’m running them together. By Wednesday morning there was 40 new on the ground with winds at elevation maxing out with gusts of between 80- 100 km/h at 3000m. On Thursday another 20 cms fell followed by another 25 – 30cms on Friday. There was a lot of digging and stair – clearing going on every day; it was awesome to share the hut with another group (a group from the Ketchum area of Idaho) that were just as dilligent with chores as we were.

View of the trees we skied on a sunnier day – taken from the Granite Glacier

Setting a good skin track was key to a good day


Surprisingly stability was good and we got bolder and bolder as the week wore on and the powder got deeper and lighter. Ski cuts on convexities would shed the storm snow but the avalanches didn’t step down. Some wind-loading did occur on slopes that were more open but, by and large, slopes in the trees were well-anchored, protected from wind and accumulated a ton of snow. It was ridiculously good skiing.





Vince and Lee attacking pillows


It kept snowing throughout the week and into exchange day. Only two flights came in and out on exchange day so half our party got out, half the new party got in. We were stuck in limbo.

Unfortunately the new crop of Brits who came in were rather clueless – the idea of doing chores was foreign to them. I suppose they thought that snow fairys cleared out the shitters and rebuilt the steps as they were quite content to have tea and crumpets while we got water, cleared out snow and did dishes. We did manage to get in a bit of skiing on Saturday – the day that we were suppose to leave.

The next day another 50 cms fell. Fortunately the bird flew twice and we managed to get out.

Vince in attack position – while skiing and while doing chores

Mike digging out from 50cms

Bill Putnam twilight

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