Tuesday, June 01, 2010

The Y-Not Couloir

I feel like Andrew does a great job describing this one in his guidebook, The Chuting Gallery:


Y Not? A 40' cliff in the middle of a 45º slope is one good reason!  This is the Y Couloir on steroids.  Shorter, steeper, narrower and scarier by far.  An out-of-control fall in the Y-Not would lead to a graphic death as the victim pinballed down the chute, over the cliff and was torn to bits in the rocks below.  Falling is forbidden.  Timing is critical.

This is the type of ski line description that you don't show your mother (sorry if you are reading this now, mom).


As soon as the snow conditions began to settle this season, the Y-Not was first on my list to hit.  My beard was right on the edge of full and big.  It did not necessarily play a huge role in the actual skiing of this line, but the correlation of both the skiing and the beard was easy to see - they were both awesome.  I got two friends together and we headed up one morning in early March.

The approach is simply 3,000 feet of bootpacking straight up the Y.  We happened to be doing it on a day with a lot of snow and no existing bootpack, so the walk took a bit longer than it has in the past.

James Good and Mark Greenwood lead the way up the Y Couloir.

The top section of the Y-Not is super tame.  Just wide open skiing with a lot of snow.  Then it begins to steepen up.

I have other shots of skiing the upper section, but I just kept going back to this one as my favorite.  I think I just like its generous emptiness.  Skier: Mark Greenwood

The approach to the rappel anchors is where the descent becomes steep and serious.  A fall over this cliff/cave would not end well for anyone.

James Good makes his way to the rap.

The rap anchors where completely mangled due to rock fall (or something) so we had to improvise.

Sometimes rappelling requires a tree and a little more rope than you were planning.  Skier: James Good

Once you get on rope you can begin to relax, smile, and get psyched for what is below.

A freehanging rappel midway down a nearly 3,000' ski descent.  This is cool.  Skier: Mark Greenwood

The bottom section of the chute is tight, steep, and super fun.


The Y-Not is a Wasatch classic for a reason.  Just show the line the respect it demands and you will be glad you did it.

For more photos be sure to check out: www.dbutcherphotography.com

2 comments:

jer-o-rific said...

Sweet! I am truly impressed with the line, the description, and especially the graphics.

Well Done.

Mindy and Shane said...

That's pretty sick...well done.

-Shane