First Weekend Ski

Last year our first ski was the last weekend in October. This year the ice and snow came very late to Pangnirtung, and our first ski was at the very end of January. We would have been better off walking!

Markus and our neighbour's dog Freya (aka Chompers), enjoying the first ski of the year.

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Mt. Lapin Lisä

Last weekend I skied up to Mt. Noname, which I'm now going to call Mt. Lapin Lisä (I'll explain it later). The peak on the other side of the fiord was over 1100 m from sealevel which is where I started because I wanted to see if I could suffer through it. There was an easier way.

I spotted a pretty hot-looking coulouir from the top and took a chance skiing down it. I didn't really know whether it was going to be a dead end or not. Well, it kind of was (ice falls) but still the skiing was brilliant. It took me over 20 km and nearly seven hours to complete this trip. I didn't have enough water, my skins broke, and I ran out of time and granola bars. In other words, a hell of a day.

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Skiing on Mt. Duval

Yet again a good telemark skiing trip up the side of Mt. Duval and then down on hard-packed slopes. For us it was good but for somebody used to skiing in B.C. would probably have described it as "you call this a snowpack?" We were skiing over rocky patches at times, and overall the snow was like concrete. Well, we never skied in B.C. so that's not a concern for us.

That's skiing in Baffin for ya: two powder days a year, if we are lucky. As a skier you need to be a jack of all trades: you have to master hard snow, soft snow, crud, complete-shit-snow, something that's a mixture of all of the previous, and you have to have a keen eye for polar bears. The ability to hang back in order to avoid those nasty slams when you hit that only soft spot on the slope is an asset.

It's all good, though. The great thing is that you can put your skis on at your porch and just go.

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