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Kickstep with Ryan

Some days there is no instability. Our compression columns snapped off at the base. Kickturns stayed in place. The advisory boasted low. Time to try Kickstep, again. Round three in four days.

Anchorage alpinist Ryan Hokanson and I left Tincan parking lot at 9 am and first skied the 2,000-foot south face of Tincan Proper (Why not Tincan Improper?) to Tincan Creek. We toured up to Kickstep, booted to the summit and skied the standard chute on the west face. The snow was like skiing a massive duvet until we entered the slough-scoured chute.

Ryan on the northwest ridge of Kickstep above Tincan Creek. The chute we skied drops down and skiers left of Ryan.


Ryan snuck through the rocks and skied this 50-degree shot that dropped straight into the hidden chute. He stopped below a cliff to spot me. I yelled down, "Hey Ryan! You see the chute?" "Oh yeah! It's like a hose, right below me." I took my 45-degree powder line straight into the hose.


Ryan skiing avalanche-scour far below the hose's eight-foot wide venturi. 


Our eight-hour tour was 6,000 feet and 11 miles.