Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Frey Trip 2011 with SGT

Last year was the first year that I got to venture out to Refugio Frey in the backcountry off of Cerro Catedral. It was late in the year and the snow wasn't ideal, but the experience was nothing short of amazing. This year, spending another southern hemisphere winter in Argentina with SASS Global Travel, I had the opportunity to revisit Frey. However, this trip, we had better conditions and a group filled with enthusiastic SGT clientele and staff.


Out journey to Frey started off the backside of the mountain with Skylar leading the way. In total, there was twelve of us, the largest group from SGT to venture out to Frey to date.


Coulter was stoked after our first run to the valley floor. It was a warm up for the rest of the day, but my legs were certainly burning!


After run number one, we still had a short skin to get to the actual hut. Once we arrived we moved in and unloaded our heavy packs.


The upstairs is the bunk room where a symphony of snores can be heard late in the night after long days of hiking and skiing.


The downstairs has a lap warmer...a friendly cat to keep you company.


After we took the load of our backs we left Frey in the distance and went for another run.


Skylar, Coulter, and Ryan soaked in the surroundings while choosing from the endless possibilities around us.


After a moment of relaxation at the bottom of the run, we started our hike to the top. There's something about skinning that is so peaceful. The quietness of the backcountry with your friends is one of my favorite places to be.


At the top, Coulter was ready to turn it up a notch and immediately dropped into his line with confidence.


Ryan cruised down the "Sherman Chute" with ease.


Grant crushed an alternate "Sherman Chute" and his smile never left his face while we were out at Frey...actually I'm pretty sure he was smiling the whole time he was in Argentina. On top of riding sweet lines, eating amazing food, and enjoying the Argentine culture, Grant made his first split board while he was at SGT.


Skylar and Coulter pointed me in the right direction on this fun line. The snow was epic! Photo courtesy of Coulter.


After a long day of skiing and hiking, we hung our gear up to dry and settled in to the ambiance that is Frey.


Drinks were poured and everyone was stoked, beyond stoked actually.


One thing that is absolutely incredible at Frey is the food. Fuel for the next day is so important and they cook up and serve some mouth watering meals there.


The next day we had some more fun, skied some more lines, and ate delicious food. It's my idea of living like a queen.


Although this picture doesn't do this line justice, Skylar crushed this one. I didn't get to see this until we were leaving Frey and I was in awe, as I typically am of Skylar. He's so humble he would never mention it, but that just adds to the perplexity of his character.


Leaving Frey is always hard to do. With two nights and two full days of riding awesome snow, this trip was definitely fulfilling on another level compared to last years.


If one thing can be sure, a visit to Refugio Frey is a solid way to end your trip in Argentina. It's a special place with incredible terrain. The people who run Frey, cook for you, and care take the hut do an impressive job to say the least. If you get the chance and find yourself in Bariloche, make the effort to get out there, you own't be disappointed. I'll be back next year Frey!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Alpine Initiatives


Alpine Initiatives recently put out this video and launched their new site. I've posted many times before about this amazing non-profit that was started within the ski industry, but A.I. continues to inspire me so I figured I will continue to share anything and everything A.I. Check out their new site here: ALPINE INITIATIVES!