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Early Spring at the Switchbacks

Sun, 03/17/2013

Josh, Ian, Sylvain & I hiked up the Switchbacks hoping to cash in on some spring sunshine.  Cima, Jen, Springer, Celine, and Leigh Anne Joined us for the hike.  I was fully expecting to hike back down given the north wind forecasted and the apparent stability of the day but it was light from the west and cycling up the south face when we got there.  We all launched into strong and relatively smooth lift that quickly took us up a couple thousand feet. Sylvain and Ian headed up valley but didn't think it looked promising enough to continue that way while Josh headed straight for Baldy.  I was last to launch (taking photos) and by the time I got near the top of lift Ian and Sylvain were returning from their up valley push. The three of us then dove over the back hoping to connect to lift over Blacktail but not finding any we side hill landed and hiked up to a good launch spot.  We relaunched and flew out towards Baldy finding lots of lift along the way. Once we got to Baldy Ian and Sylvain worked abundant lift out in front of Baldy while I connected to a boomer over Meadowcreek.  I quickly got high enough to head back to the Switchbacks and again found big lift but by this time I was seriously concerned about getting frostbite on my toes so I spiraled down and landed by my car on Columbia Glacier Loop Road.  Ian, Josh, and Sylvain ended up at Harry Mac.



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