Two Rivers Lake Ski Tour

Pretty good skiing, considering it's only November!

Winter always seems to be long in coming down on the plains, but it arrived with a vengeance in the high country some time ago. It always takes one mellow, experimental trip in the late fall to make the mental adjustment. Thus, Brian and I met up at Bear Lake for a little “let’s see what happens” ski touring. Well, at least ski touring on my part, split snowboard touring on his. Since a snowboard (even one split in half) is a miserable way to get around in the backcountry, I opted for my new, Scarpa T2 plastic tele boots and heaviest skis and bindings. Sympathy in slogging or something.

It was snowing heavily at Bear Lake with 10″ on the ground (enough to hide most of the rocks) but more up high. We skied up past the turn-off for Flattop, and continued on up the gently rising traverse toward Lake Helene and Two Rivers Lake. By the time we reached the first lake, we felt sufficiently exercised to turn the trip and head back down.

My new rig had performed reasonably well on the uphill despite their weight and relative stiffness and they were beautiful on the downhill as well. After a long and active summer in the mountains, it was so delicious to glide through the white, puffy version of the same. The only really exciting part came in the last half mile with the final descent to Bear Lake. Narrow, rocky, trees, steep: lots of excitement, but a good start to the season nonetheless.

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