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Skiing the Devil's Bedstead

Trail Creek Road passes between Mackay and Sun Valley, Idaho. It accesses some of the most beautiful terrain I have ever laid eyes on, and according to the road closure website run by the state of Idaho, it was closed when my friend Greg and I set out to ski the Devil s Bedstead last spring.
April 2015 43

April 2015 43

Our plan was to drive up to the gate from the Sun Valley side and proceed from there with bikes and backpacks filled with camping gear. The road was steep so we walked and pushed our bikes. As we were riding our bikes down the road, somebody in a pickup truck was heading up the road. He stopped, bewildered at the sight of two people riding their bikes, laden with backpacks filled to the brim, with skis. The driver offered us a ride to where we were going, and we gratefully accepted. After biking a little longer, ditching the bikes, and walking for another little bit, we found a perfect camping spot. It was literally a stone s throw from Kane Creek with running water, a flat dry spot for a tent, and right next to where we would begin our ascent the next morning.   Because we were planning on driving back to Salt Lake after skiing, we woke up at three in the morning. We made some coffee and ate some bars, then we were off. Hiking up the slope to the east of our campsite was quicker than we thought, and soon we reached the snowline. Skinning up to treeline was quick, and we were presented with a beautiful mountain face ahead of us. We were lucky enough to be able to skin to within 100 feet of the summit. The summit of the Devil s Bedstead is one of the most stunningly beautiful summits I have ever stood on. There s not the slightest hint of flat ground visible from it and every peak that we could see had snow on it.

We dropped down off the summit and picked out the most obvious line to ski. The face is divided by shallow gullies that make for multiple line choices. After skiing through the trees to the end of the snow, we walked back to camp and packed up. Light clouds were moving in and the bike ride out was cool and pleasant. The north face of the Devil s Bedstead is an iconic view. The reason that the mountain is called the Devil s Bedstead is because it appears to be shaped like a bed, and Satan lies there tempting skiers away from responsibility with beautiful lines and lots of snow. The peak that we skied makes up the headboard, a beautiful one at that. Skiing the fall line down 2,400 vertical feet of consistent skiing makes for a great run down a beautiful peak. Ben White

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