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It’s been no secret through our reports of ‘wet dreams’ the spring skiing around here has been very premeditated. Whether visible from the safety of the lodge, or the exposure of a steep switchback, there has been one line tugging at the mind more than others. Significantly more. And not surprisingly so.
The upper half of Shirouma Northeast. Sometimes Images aren’t enough.
The corner pocket of Shiroumadake has called for several years, most palpably so since this winter when a closer look at it revealed its potential. It starts with the spine pillow features we have familiarized ourselves with around here, and continues into some steep, techy ridge skiing. The line concludes with a riders delight, their choice of a spine or couloir leading into a wide drainage designed for airplane turns, all concluding 1800 meters down the valley.
On the up.
Up and up.
Requisite entrance shot.
Top of Hakuba.
Matthias further down.
In the thick of things.
The second of many pitches.
Feeling small on the third pitch.
Time to open things up and point ‘em.
Maybe we are paying for it now as we sit through rain. Maybe it was truly meant to be. This was one of the more difficult and more luck driven objectives of the spring. Attaining this was a true treat.