Friday, March 27, 2015

North Pole Staircase

Here is one you don't see too often. To access the North Pole region, we typically open the hiking gate near the Summit. Skiers and riders hike up the ridge line to Little Lenawee Peak and traverse East dropping into 1st Notch, 2nd Notch, East and West Vertical Cornice, Narrow North Pole and North Pole. The wind can affect the upper reaches of these lines. When the skiing gets too bony at the top, we will close that gate and, if conditions allows, set a staircase right up North Pole.So for the last couple of days, people have been hiking and skiing the North Pole staircase. You will, almost certainly, see the North Pole gate open again.




7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Al--what are the slope degrees in that area? Seems like the staircase could offer someone who doesn't want to drop in from the top a chance to ski some cool terrain with a little less consequence?

Steve Clinkscales said...

No fair! You show all the hard work of the uphill journey, but none of the fun coming down!!! (but I am still jealous of the climber!)

Anonymous said...

Never hiked east wall. But how tough is the hike up willy's? Also where the north pole access gate is, how tough is that hike?

Anonymous said...

North pole gate takes me 5-10 minutes to summit, staircases take more like 20-30. Lenawee chair does a lot of the vertical for you if you use the hiking gate.

Both hikes would be worth your time even without skiing down after.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info, but I could never take the walk of shame back down unless it was ridiculously rocky to the point of wrecking gear, but it would probably be closed if it was that bad

Alan Henceroth - COO and Vice President said...

Good comments there. The North Pole and Willy's staircases are very steep and most people think they are very difficult. The North Pole Gate hike is a fair bit easier, but no walk in the park.

Alan Henceroth - COO and Vice President said...

Interesting question about steepness. The staircase is very steep and difficult, but with no exposure to cliffs. The North Pole Gate is a much easier hike, but more exposure to the cliffs.