Patagonia Backcountry Report: Perfect F’ing Powder in Scary Chute

Miles Clark | | Conditions ReportConditions Report

Report from September 20, 2022

Tuesday was the penultimate day of our southern ski season.

After learning the previous day that it was south faces or bust (other aspects were already sun cooked), we went for Scary Chute – a due south-facing chute with a fun rollover, rocks, and a wide-open runout.

Scary Chute is often precisely that, scary.

Firm, icy, chattery, rocky, narrow, and kinda ugly…

None of those words applied on this day.

I’ve never seen it so good.

Lines & towers. image: snowbrains

Perfect F’ing Powder…

Usually, after a storm, the wind blows and changes all the powder to ‘carton’ (cardboard) here but for some reason, the wind didn’t blow for three days this cycle – which was dreamy.

I never feel confident atop this line, but I did this time.

1 track mind. image: snowbrains

It was clear that the chute was going to be perfect.

It was going to allow for high-speed turns, slashes, and fun.

What I wasn’t sure about was the runout.

Lenga trees. image: snowbrains

It had a lot of avalanche chunder from the rain a few days back but the new snow on top should be enough to soften the blow.

I took a deep breath and dropped in.

The snow was as advertised:  perfect powder.

Vista. image: snowbrains

I gained speed as my confidence in the snow increased.

My sixth turn in the chute might have been my favorite of the season.

Like skiing on powder rails with full response.

Roller balls. image: snowbrains

I blasted out onto the apron, hit the avalanche chunder, felt it was a-ok, and kept blasting down to the valley floor below.

I’ve never had Scary Chute so good.

I relished it as I sat on my pack eating cookies greedily.

Lots of surface hoar out there meaning there has been no wind, which is special here. image: snowbrains

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