Valdez w/ Dan & Nik

Our Valdez timing was perfect: splitter weather, stable snow, Tailgate Alaska had just finished and Mountain Man Hill Climb hadn't started. Dan Oberlatz, Dan's longtime friend Nik Koblov from Brooklyn and I roadied to Valdez for a week of touring.

Dan and Nik have been on many crazy Alaska adventures together. In 2008 we spent an epic week skiing and exploring passes and powder basins in the Neacola Mountains.

 

Skinning Crud Busters to log 5,500 vertical on our first day.  

 

Dan flossing up with his Camp XLH 95 ski touring harness. Dan is lucky he didn't fall in a crevasse since he forgot his tweezers to extricate the harness. 

 

Nik and his new, super-fatty DPS Lotus 120 carbon fiber skis.

 

After sampling other dining establishments in Valdez–Fu Kung, Ernesto-less Ernestos, The Bistro–we voted the Best Western our favorite.

 

A real Valdez rig. Mullet required.

 

Nik dropping a long glacial corridor into the Hoodoo. This is one of my favorite tours at Thompson Pas. An earthquake that morning triggered the icefall and obliterated the lower 1000 feet of the run.

  
Nik touring above the Worthington Glacier for a long, creamy, wind-buffed powder run. 

 

Nik dropping into the upper gullet of the Key-to-Lisa, our last run of the trip as we headed out of town, back to Anchorage.