On the Hill: Man on a mission
November 18, 2006
Most area residents took their first runs Saturday when Ajax officially opened its lifts. One local, however, got a head start one week earlier.Snowmass’ Chris Davenport, in the midst of his mission to climb and ski the state’s fourteeners in one calendar year, logged his first ascent and ski descent of the fall Nov. 11 on Mount Bross.Davenport and Aspen’s Nick Devore – who skied 14 peaks together last spring – did a recon mission to Mount Princeton and Mount Shavano, according to http://www.skithe14ers.com. When they determined the peaks were not yet skiable, they drove to Alma and to the base of Bross. A continuous line from the summit was visible, so the two started their climb. They made quick work up the East Ridge and reached the summit of Bross – one of the state’s easiest fourteeners – in two hours, Davenport wrote on his web site. Strong winds filled Moose Gulch with soft snow, giving the two skiers good conditions for a few hundred vertical feet off the top. Things changed, however, when they encountered sastrugi – windblown snow that forms hard ridges.While Davenport wrote that the peak is perhaps the least interesting fourteener in Colorado, he was, however, grateful to log the ascent. Only eight of the state’s 54 fourteeners remain, among them Longs and Kit Carson peaks, and Mount Princeton. Davenport, Devore and Aspen’s Ted Mahon attempted to summit Princeton on Nov. 9, but turned back at 13,000 feet because of time constraints and poor coverage near the summit. Davenport has until Jan. 21 to finish the project within one calendar year. He kicked off his mission on Mount Lincoln in the Mosquito Range.The Aspen Times, Aspen, Colo.