Joffre touring / by Strain

I went on an exploratory day tour on tuesday up to Joffre Lakes with Unofficial Whistler's Jake Cohn. Neither of us had been before but wanted to scope the area because of its excellent and easy access from the Duffey Lake road. A short climb and a couple lake crossings and we at treeline in a riding paradise - steep couloirs and chutes, 1000m glacier descents, massive pillow fields and mature forest presented up and downhill options for any conditions.

We tried to gain access to a great looking couloir but short of booting up the gut, couldn't find an ascent option we were comfortable with and decided to back off to a different line. We were again shut down trying to get on top of the Heartstrings zone when the weather socked in, eliminating our ability to navigate above treeline, in an area with more than enough death-gnar to do around... not the kind of place you want to be moving blind. Entering the line further down the ridge, we were rewarded with a playful and pillowy 600m descent to the valley bottom.

Of note: I was able to ride my split all the way back to the lower lake with ease, making Joffre the most splitboard friendly tour I've done off the Duffey to date. A quick transition to put skins back on, and I was first back to the car - doesn't happen often when touring with skiers! Despite being turned back of our two objectives, our exploratory mission was a great success, and you can bet we'll be back soon...