After 10 years of looking at and getting turned around over a dozen times Melissa Tremblay and I skied Fatigue Mountain’s southwest face in near prefect loose dry snow conditions today.
Yesterday I mentioned to Vince Goyette that I was thinking Fatigue might be in good skiing shape. He messaged me later saying that Kai Seifert had skied it on Monday and Kai reported good condition on their run. Then Anna Elkins told me that it was local’s day at Banff Sunshine Village ($35 lift tickets). With everything pointing me towards Fatigue we decided to go for it as a day trip!
Got to the top of Strawberry lift around 9:30am, skinned to the top of Quartz Pass and picked up the still fresh skin track from Monday. We followed the track all the way to the base of Fatigue and up to the ridge. From there we bootpacked the long north summit ridge to the top over rock and snow. We backtracked down to the false summit and skied the skier’s left area of the southwest face down to the low alpine rolls and back to the skin track at high treeline. We ended our day trying to rush back to the resort before dark.
The snow around Quartz Hill is wind blasted but once we dropped onto the other side there is almost no sign of wind until we were above 2500m along the ridge. The run down started thin and rocky but turned to prefect loose dry surface facetted snow for the majority of the run, it was a real treat to ski such a line in those conditions. Sunny with some clouds and fairly cold most of the day. Surface hoar is growing everywhere except the high alpine or where the wind has got to it (Quartz area).