Going for a look-around at Burstall Pass in a relatively low
snow year and trying to find some snow to ski.


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Maria and Michael invited me to join them for a tour on the Smith-D. The conditions weren't amazing
as we've had two weeks of mostly rain and warm weather, so we elected for a low-risk tour into
the Burstall Pass area to poke around. The first thought was to go up the Comm/Pig's Tail col, but
you'll see why that was a bad idea. Here's what I think are lynx tracks within the skin track.
Pretty big paws considering the short throw of the strides.


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Close-up of the paw print.


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Soooo, this is why we didn't go up Comm/Pig's Tail. Pretty barren-looking and not really worth
destroying skis over. This is also the start of the Spray Range Traverse - a tour I'd love to
actually finish some day.


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Not a great look into the normal trail up Burstall Pass with the low cloud cover, but the right side
of Mt Birdwood and a lot of rocks are visible here.


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Michael had a great suggestion as we were having some hot cocoa at the base of the lake and considering
options. He suggested a small tree triangle off the lower part of Pig's Tail below some slide debris.
After punching through some thicker trees, we gained a bench that basically fed right onto that
slope. However, after helping Maria navigate some of the steeper uptrack and roots/trees, Michael
managed to fall over and eat it, which I thought was hilarious.


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Close-up of Michael in the trees with Maria visible giggling.


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The lower left part of this slide path was our target to just get a few turns in. Above where the
skinny Christmas trees are would have been a more fun slope, but had already slid and was a mess
with rock-solid debris as the surface. This is the start of the Shark's Fin/Pig's Tail.


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A nice look back towards the Robertson Glacier exit.

Video of Maria's first tour of the year



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Looking back towards the Chester Lake area across the highway from our high point of the day.


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A very cute photo of a very cute couple in front of Commonwealth Peak, K-country, AB.

Our tour is here in Garmin-land CONNECT .
You can see in the time data that I crushed the exit in ~35 mins from the edge of the lake.
Thanks to Graham for the 'one-skin' trick on mostly flat terrain. Too bad the optical HR didn't
pick up the crushing pace/speed I was working here.

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