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Early December Kite Trip out West-Advice on CO UT MT WY ID

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lewmt
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Re: Early December Kite Trip out West-Advice on CO UT MT WY

Postby lewmt » Tue Oct 11, 2011 4:38 am

You probably won't need any avalanche gear or preparedness. Most kite terrain doesn't really merit that...but if you snowmobile through some areas & conditions are right some trails can take you through runout zones....but ... it sounds like you won't be doing that. The only reason I suggested watching various avalanche forecasts is that they will discuss daily changes in snow types & quality - there's many variations that could make one area preferable to others.

I wouldn't worry about the 14M. 12M, 9M, maybe a 7 should have you guys in good shape. 14 would only be necessary if the powder is way deep & winds are lightish.

The Bighorns are amazing & Billings is typically almost as cheap to fly in & out of as SLC. But .... there's not much good ski area options nearby. Red Lodge is typically crappy - especially early season. Occasionally they get a huge dump but don't expect it. Its possible that all of the places you're considering will be in great shape by early Dec....but best to watch patiently before plunking your $ down.


4WD rig? You may not need 1 but then you might Really need one - especially if you're not used to driving in snow.

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Re: Early December Kite Trip out West-Advice on CO UT MT WY

Postby JKicker » Sat Nov 05, 2011 6:23 pm

Hey guys,

I'm starting to dig into the weather reports this weekend to see if any action is developing. Besides the Big Horns (which look awesome!), any anecdotal evidence that we can expect snow in either Utah or Jackson Hole area come December 4? I know we probably need to hold out another week or or two, but its hard!

Thanks!

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Re: Early December Kite Trip out West-Advice on CO UT MT WY

Postby waynepjh » Sat Nov 05, 2011 7:40 pm

Utah and jackson area have good spots up high that should be decent by then. Hard to say still but most years it turns on like a switch! We might rally early tomrw to the big horns. The video pascal posted got me really fired up!

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Re: Early December Kite Trip out West-Advice on CO UT MT WY

Postby dandre » Mon Nov 07, 2011 11:46 am

If you're up in Big Sky send me a message and I'll put you up at a ridiculously low rate (60bukos @ the resort)
The low elevations won't be on till mid dec/jan but some of the kite areas above 8/9 thousand should be on. If you're just stopping by to check out the resort I might be able to swing a half off pass or something.

For sure time to come in MT is the end of the February chill. Mid January is balla too.


Enjoy your trip!

lewmt
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Re: Early December Kite Trip out West-Advice on CO UT MT WY

Postby lewmt » Tue Nov 08, 2011 2:02 pm

If you have to give up some $ now - the Bighorns are the surest thing. The base is set & the riding will only improve with each new storm. Everything can change fast with 1 really good storm rolling outta the gulf of Alaska. Marginal base in other areas so far. The bad thing about shooting for the Bigs is I think your timing is just after they close the road???? Windgumby? This just means park & ride is over and bile access is required. Biles are fun too though.

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Re: Early December Kite Trip out West-Advice on CO UT MT WY

Postby JKicker » Fri Nov 11, 2011 5:04 pm

No money committed anywhere yet! 8) I feel like I'm playing black jack with mother nature.

Without a doubt, the Big Horns look amazing! How doable are snowmobiles for newcomers? Are the roads pretty well traveled and navigable by mobile?...or is it more of an off-the-grid scenario? Basically, are we going to end up lost in the middle of the back country or is there still a pretty clear path of travel?

Also, have been checking all of the snotel sensors around the WY, ID, and WY spots. Most are showing 4-6 inches but Togwotee Pass is looking stronger with 11 inches. How much coverage do I need on these sensors before I can start getting excited? Bald Mountain reporting 21 inches, so I guess somewhere around there?

For Utah, is Mammoth-Cottonwood the best snotel sensor for Skyline?

Thanks for all the responses!

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Re: Early December Kite Trip out West-Advice on CO UT MT WY

Postby Windzup » Sat Nov 12, 2011 9:51 am

This forum is the best snotel for Skyline with riders posting reports. An average of 6 inches right now, cold temps dried the snow out, and its not a packed or solid base yet. Needs a couple of feet still, at least 2 storms away from being ridable at Skyline.
Windzup

lewmt
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Re: Early December Kite Trip out West-Advice on CO UT MT WY

Postby lewmt » Sat Nov 12, 2011 1:07 pm

Riding a bile is super easy in its basic form...if you can squeeze a throttle & sit - you're skilled. Like many things if you go big in backcountry circumstances it becomes more skill-requisite. The ride from Bear Lodge to the Bald mtn kite area is groomed trail/ flat/ well marked. You basically ride down a highway that just closed for the season. Worst thing is the layer of cost it adds. It can get white-out at those elevations in some of the open areas which can make it tricky finding your way(no depth perception & low visibility).

New series of storms rolling through the west the next few days - things could improve over a wider swath this coming week.

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Re: Early December Kite Trip out West-Advice on CO UT MT WY

Postby waynepjh » Sat Nov 12, 2011 4:20 pm

Its dumping here in jackson right now! Woke up with 5 new in the valley! 12+ in the mountains! It has begun:)

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Re: Early December Kite Trip out West-Advice on CO UT MT WY

Postby JKicker » Sun Nov 20, 2011 8:20 pm

Thanks for the reports! We have put off the destination decision for about as much as we can at this point... after doing another Snotel review it looks like many of of the Jackson area sensors are reporting well over 2 feet...Towgotee pass reporting 31 inches today. To us, Jackson seems like the safest bet at this point considering the Big Horns, Island Park, and some southern Montana spots will be doable even if the Jackson area spots don't come through.

Has anyone scoped Towgotee Pass yet? I posted on the Jackson facebook groups this morning looking for any nuggets...guess everyone is probably still loving it up in the Big Horns while it is still convenient :thumb:

We are going to try to book our flights to Jackson tomorrow once the weekend rate hikes fall off... expensive to fly there, but looks like it'll be well worth it!

I've been scoping all the spots pretty hard...will probably be following up with some more specific spot questions soon. Looks like a lot of the spots are good on W/SW winds...wondering what other wind directions you get and where the spots are for then.

Thanks, we're getting pumped! :thumb:


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