Inspired by good weather forecast Alicja, Mark and I went up for one more ski mission of the season.
On Sunday May 26th we made our way up the Athabasca glacier and up onto the Columbia Icefield to setting up high camp at 3270m elevation and 3km's from the base of the North Twin.
With just below freezing temperatures we experienced fast travel conditions on supportive snowpack from the toe of the Athabasca glacier all the way to camp. Snow coverage over glacier ice ranged from 40 - 70 cm's below the headwall to 2 -3m+ once Columbia Icefield.
Sunday night brought in clear skies with -10 overnight lows and on Monday we skied up North Twin via the South East Slopes easily bypassing visible crevasses and sags. We used ski crampons halfway up the summit slope and removed them on the lower angled terrain near the top.
Ski quality was pretty good with hard snow for the first few hundred meters turning to corn snow lower down.
Packing camp we skied all the way back down to the car in time for dinner.
Monday afternoon suns packed some serious punch with temperatures in the low 10's on the upper glacier and over 15 degrees as we made our way down the final headwall and below the Snow Dome seracs moving as fast as we can to minimize exposure time under an intimidating piece of terrain.
With one day of serious heat since our ascent on Sunday, the bridges over numerous crevasses on the upper ramp below the snow dome were sagging significantly and, we noticed a couple of open crevasses which were not there on the way up just the day before.
Looks like spring is finally here!