After the vernal equinox has passed and the light-deprived souls at latitude 61N can enjoy more than 12 hours between sunrise and sunset, after work ski tours are no longer shadowy trips in darkness lit by head lamp or moonlight. The Anchorage spring time after work ski becomes a late afternoon glisse brilliant at first, then settling into an alpenglow ensonced descent to a warm home. Skiing by moonshadow in midwinter can be dreamlike and deeply enjoyable, but descending through alpine powder in the long light of the northern sunset of spring warms the spirit, even though the temperatures are quite cold. Inspired by the brilliant afternoon sunshine of this equinox, yours truly was compelled to scout Kanchee.
Jon and I have discussed various lines of the Anchorage Front Range so many times I've lost track, but we always mention Kanchee - how it's just there and so beautiful. And, my gaze is always drawn to Kanchee on my after-work journey home to east Anchorage; in mind-numbing rush hour traffic, I daydream about skiing the Kanchee summit line and fantasize about the opulent powder there. And, on a blog post about the front range, Elfy, commented about skiing Kanchee. All this Kanchee karma, I had to go.
Kanchee is so right there, closer than I had imagined. Skiing from the end of Basher Road, I ascended the Dome and skied to a saddle for a good look at Kanchee and Knoya, the K twins. What beautiful summit bowls these two have. I'm going back when I have a full day to devote to it - Kanchee to Knoya would make an exceptional trip.
Rockage potential is always present in the front range, and descending from the true summits of the K twins, especially Knoya, would likely involve some rock encounters, but snow in the gullies looks very good. The snow in the gully I skied tonight was sweet. If the weather holds, I'm going to the K twins on Saturday.