Wednesday, 2 May 2018

Troll Peninsula ski touring adventures - first half

The Troll Peninsula of Northern Iceland has been on my 'hit list' for a while now and finally this year I managed to fit a trip into my diary running a week of ski touring adventures for a small group of friends.

Having landed in Keflavik and (fortunately) collected all our bags we set off on the long drive North, broken up by a comfortable night halfway, woken to the bizarre sound of snipe 'drumming'. An easy drive the next morning got us onto the peninsula, where a summit just beyond Dalvik was looking quite appealing from the road.

Rich setting off from the road:

Interesting terrain coming into view behind:

First day, first summit and a view as well - result!

Great spring snow on the descent:

Well hello there! With one good run in the bag there was loads of time to go for a second lap and these couloirs were just screaming out to be skied!

A deceptively long bootpack took us up 500m to the ridge:

Looking tasty!

Sandy making the first turns, no place for mistakes...


Mellower angles lower down:

Sandy ripping up the amazing smooth snow on the apron:

Happy team with our line centre stage:

Monday had always looked like it was going to be the worst day for weather, and so it proved, with low lying cloud and intermittent precipitation (sometimes white, sometimes translucent...). We still managed a good short tour and with some cunning navigation found our way to a summit, though the view was not particularly great:

The ski down was better fun than expected, with a layer of heavy powder over smooth spring snow, and we then retreated to our lodge for tea and cakes...

On Tuesday the forecast was for clouds with sunny spells - it turned out much better than expected!

Nice views on the way to our first summit at 930m:

Summit team:

Top of the North couloir looking inviting!

Good cold snow and 40ยบ - sadly this only lasted for 100m or so before yesterday's rain made itself felt, but a fun run down:

The gang about to enter the 'crust zone':

A quick 400m of skinning saw us back on to the summit ridge and we made a second half-lap down a different bowl with a few cms of soft over a smooth base - nice!

A quick skin back up our previous skin track took us back to the summit ridge just in time to see a portal to another dimension open up briefly:

Portal within a portal:

Our last run back to the car took us through a mix of under-cooked, over-cooked and just right spring snow. Once again despite the lean snow conditions low down we managed to make turns all the way down to the road.

A fine day out topped off with some quality fish soup and cake in Dalvik!

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